The Virginia Center for Investigative Journalism is an independent, nonprofit newsroom, drawing on the resources of veteran journalists and advanced university students to cover stories vital to the commonwealth.
VCIJ holds two core missions -- creating hard-hitting, informative journalism and providing opportunity and guidance to students. VCIJ plans to engage Virginians through widely distributed articles, multi-platform storytelling, and public discussions in colleges, libraries and municipal centers.
The need is clear. Virginia has lost 28 newspapers since 2004. The steep decline in the number of journalists in the state, coupled with the rise in political incivility and violence, make these efforts ever more pressing. Issues vital to Virginians -- education, military affairs, environmental regulations, criminal justice reform and growing inequality -- are getting less and less attention.
VCIJ will promote community engagement through collaborations with public entities -- universities, colleges, libraries, civic centers and organizations. It will host events and foster conversations between diverse communities.
It will engage and train the next generation of journalists, matching students to relevant projects and stretching their abilities. Our guiding principle is civic enlightenment -- helping students understand the constitutional role of a free press and the impacts of high-level, fact-based journalism.