Media Fellows


The Media Fellows program supports the development of student leaders in PSU's Student Media organizations. Holding positions in such organizations signifies a degree of privilege and influence, and with that comes added responsibility to one's organization as well as the PSU community. Thus, while learning through practice is at the center of Student Media, students are expected to go beyond skill development. The Media Fellows program, with its emphasis on discussion and reflection, is designed to help them take this next step toward becoming more effective, well-rounded leaders.

Program Requirements

This program is mandatory for each student receiving ELSA funding, in addition to meeting expected levels of organizational commitment. Students will attend the sessions and check-ins listed below and complete the corresponding assignments. 


When accepting your ELSA award, it is important to understand student aid and cost of attendance. The university is only allowed, by federal law, to award you up to the cost of attendance minus the Expected Family Contribution (EFC) calculated from your FAFSAdata. Student aid can consist of federal loans, grants, scholarships, tuition remission, etc. Your ELSA is considered student aid. Visit Financial Aid's website to determine cost of attendance.

If you have been given a financial aid package, the amounts may be adjusted if the dispersal of your ELSA puts your total aid over your estimated "need". 

If you have accepted your maximum amount in financial aid (or close to it), please visit the Financial Aid office to discuss how your ELSA may impact your aid package.



Students must earn a minimum of 70 points out of a possible 100 each term to keep their ELSA. If a student does not earn the required number of points, the ELSA for that term will be retracted.

Points Per Term (Maximum = 100; Minimum Required = 70)

  • 3 Sessions = 20pts each
  • 1 Advisor Check-in = 20pts
  • 1 Assignment = up to 20pts

Reflection assignments are submitted to the Coordinator of Student Media at by 11:59pm of the specified deadline date. Though there is no set word count, a reflection writing assignment that meets expectations tends to be around 400-500 words. It should demonstrate your active engagement with the subject matter beyond a superficial level and also be free of significant grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors. Writings that do not meet these expectations may receive partial or no credit. An assignment turned in after the deadline will still be considered, but will be given a maximum of 10 points. Likewise, significantly delayed arrival to or early departure from a Media Fellows session may result in a loss of credit for attendance or only partial credit.

Schedule (2018-19)

Excluding summer term, we will have three group sessions per term, as well as an advisor check-in session with each student near the middle of the term. The group sessions will all be from 3-4:30pm and located in SMSU M108 (SALP Org Space). Advisor check-ins will be by appointment. 



  • September 28: Orientation & Panel Discussion
  • October 12: Media Law
  • November 9: Media Ethics
  • November 16: Term Assignment Due by 11:59pm
  • November 13-16: Advisor Check-Ins

Reflection Assignment: Choose one of the following topics and write a reflection meeting the criteria listed above.

  1. How do existing media laws impact you on a daily basis? Provide at least one example.
  2. Describe a media ethics dilemma or question in your day-to-day life outside of your media organization.


  • January 11: Digital Tools
  • January 25: Critical Thinking
  • February 8: Social Responsibility
  • February 15: Tem Assignment Due
  • February 18-21: Advisor Check-Ins


    • April 5: Controversy with Civility & Consciousness of Self
    • April 19: Mapping Your Goals
    • May 3: Preparing for the Job Market
    • May 10: Term Assignment Due
    • May 13-16: Advisor Check-Ins

      Learning Outcomes

      • Introduction to Student Media and its role within Portland State.
      • Gaining an understanding of leadership, including its various forms and functions.
      • Understanding basic concepts in First Amendment, libel, privacy, and intellectual property law.
      • Gaining a framework for making ethical decisions in media.
      • Understanding the role of media on an individual and a societal level.
      • Gaining a framework for approaching controversy based on empathy, reason, and outcomes.
      • Gaining a framework for better understanding oneself.
      • Understanding how to prepare an effective resume, cover letter, and portfolio.
      • Familiarization with an assortment of digital tools for professional and personal use.