graphic with democracy day text
UNL students are participating in Democracy Day 2022 on Sept. 15.

University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communications students will join more than 300 U.S. news organizations on Sept. 15 in calling attention to issues facing American democracy.

Democracy Day is a nationwide collaborative of print, digital media, TV and radio that’s coming together on one day to report on U.S. democracy. As a partner in the collaborative, the college’s Nebraska News Service, which publishes student work, will launch a series of stories on Sept. 15 about state voting issues and Nebraskans who are working to strengthen democracy.  

Participation in Democracy Day is a prime example of how CoJMC strives to allow students to “do from day one” by providing real world experiences. 

Our mission is grounded in the ethical pursuit of truth to uphold democracy,” said Dean Shari Veil. “Supporting Democracy Day is just an extension of what we do every day. I’m excited to see the stories our students produce and to get students across campus talking about the role of journalism in our democracy.” 

While students in the News Lab, the capstone class for broadcasting and journalism majors, and the Experience Lab, an experiential learning program, will publish democracy-related stories, students in other CoJMC classes also will be acknowledging the day. Students in Social Justice, Human Rights and the Media, for example, will hear from guest speakers about voting rights and will explore opportunities for them to get involved. 

“Students are participating in Democracy Day in a variety of ways,” said Jill Martin, assistant professor of practice of journalism. “They are writing stories that will be published through the Nebraska News Service, conducting social media campaigns and raising awareness about constitutional rights, a journalist’s role as it relates to democracy, election coverage and more. How great is that?”

Organizers of the national collaboration said they wanted to provide a way for news organizations to collectively sound the alarm about threats to democracy. 

Among the U.S. news organizations participating on Sept. 15 will be the USA Today Network, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and States Newsroom, which includes the Nebraska Examiner. Other supporters include the American Press Institute, the Society of Professional Journalists and the Online News Association. 

“We are excited to have our students participate alongside hundreds of news professionals in calling attention to the importance of democracy in our society and the role journalists play in safeguarding it,” said Michelle Hassler, associate professor of practice of journalism. “We think this will be a tremendous learning experience.”

For more information, visit To see the Nebraska News Service’s stories about democracy in Nebraska, visit