The Media Center for Science and Technology (MCST) has three priorities:
- Conducting interdisciplinary collaborations and research to understand how a variety of audiences convey and understand scientific discoveries and technological solutions
- Attracting and training students for the high-tech communication careers of the future
- Enhancing public understanding of science and technology
The SOJC is uniquely positioned to house the MCST because of its established expertise in media, journalism, strategic communication, and creative storytelling. Nearly a dozen SOJC faculty members already research and teach at the intersection of science, technology, and communication. And the school’s proximity to existing and emerging science and tech hubs in the Pacific Northwest make it a logical partner for research and collaboration.
Integration with the Phil and Penny Knight Campus
The MCST partners with the Phil and Penny Knight Campus for Accelerating Scientific Impact to develop professional development curriculum for incoming graduate students and faculty, weaving together key ideas in communication, business development, and innovation.
In October 2017, a portion of a $50 million anonymous gift to create the UO Presidential Fund for Excellence provided initial funding to establish the MCST and hire a director to lead it.
The gift from Julie and Rocky Dixon for Investigative Journalism funds a project exploring environmental risks in Oregon communities. This project, which will last until 2023, focuses on providing effective storytelling to convey environmental risks in Oregon communities and building a model for connecting and engaging scientists, policymakers, industry, media, and the public.