Student Journalists Host Free Speech Wall Day at DePaul

Photo credit: Emily Brosious
The College of Communication's SPJ/ONA DePaul student chapter organized a national "Free Speech Wall" event on Constitution Day, Sept. 17.

DePaul and eight other student chapters around the nation set up blank poster board "walls" on their campuses and in their communities and gave the public a chance to exercise their rights to free speech.

DePaul set up boards at the Bean on Michigan Avenue and on the sidewalk near the Jackson Red Line El Stop, just off the Loop Campus. Hundreds of people wrote messages on the boards during the three-hour exercise.

Students at all of the schools tweeted photos and observations during the session, which have been Storified. DePaul started the project a year ago, and recruited other chapters when the students presented the project at the SPJ Excellence in Journalism conference in Nashville two weeks ago.

"The students enjoy this project and they learn a lot about the First Amendment," said Mike Reilley, SPJ/ONA DePaul faculty adviser. "Taking the project to a national level shows the quality of leadership our student executive board provides not just our student chapter, but SPJ as a whole."

Students will analyze the free speech walls and build data visualizations and stories from the findings.

Visit our Student Organizations section for more information on SPJ/ONA.