Thursday, May 27, 2010

Countdown to Soul of Athens 2010

Every year the students at Ohio University's School of Visual Communication and E.W. Scripps School of Journalism canvas the Appalachian community of Athens, Ohio in search of colorful stories that lend themselves to online multimedia presentations.

Incredibly for the past four years they've continued to find and explore the pursuits and passions of area residents in this diverse small community, and never seem to run out of engaging ideas.

The annual project is dubbed "Soul of Athens," and every year it is recognized for its excellent photojournalism, videojournalism, and multimedia packages, which are strong on storytelling. The site is designed, edited, produced, and operated exclusively by students; this year, 60 have participated. They tackle an array of topics, ranging from poverty and sustainable farming to fashion, arts, and religion.

The 2010 edition launches on Tuesday, June 1. You can follow the countdown here, with sneak previews of what to expect.

The first volume of Soul of Athens launched in May 2007. Since the initial launch the site has continuously been recognized for its accomplishments in the fields of photojournalism, multimedia web and video production and editing. In 2009 Soul of Athens was honored by Pictures of the Year International with the “Award of Excellence” for “Online Publications Best Use.” The 2008 edition of Soul of Athens landed 1st place in National Press Photographers Association’s Best of Photojournalism contest in the category, “Best Multimedia Package”.

The 2010 Soul of Athens website will be published in a series of editions, starting on June 1. Every two weeks additional thematic editions will be added to the site. The editions include Expression, Shelter, Passage, Thrive and Experience.

Here are some of the 2009 Soul of Athens video stories that were showcased on

Growing Up After Foster Care
Caeshel Sue Rae Allen, 18, faces single parenthood and life with a drug-using partner who's awaiting trial for abusing her.

A Life Alone
After 63 years of marriage, Tom Rose shares his perspective as a depressed widower struggling to face life on his own.

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