Strout receives national social media grant

Larry Strout

A Mississippi State communication faculty member has been selected to participate in a national program where he will learn firsthand about the transformation of news and information delivery in a digital media world.

As one of six recipients of a Scripps Howard Foundation Visiting Professor in Social Media Program grant, associate professor Lawrence N. “Larry” Strout will embark on an all-expenses paid trip this August to WCPO-TV/

While working two 40-hour weeks at the Cincinnati, Ohio-based news station, Strout will gain insight on ways media outlets are using social media to communicate across multiple platforms.

Having spent 14 years in commercial and public broadcasting before entering academia, Strout said he is looking forward to “the fun of daily news journalism” during his experience.

“Like I tell students headed out to an internship or their first job, how they conduct themselves will reflect on Mississippi State and how future students may be looked at when they apply for similar positions,” said Strout, who is in his ninth year at the university.

“This may be the first time anyone at WCPO-TV has met or interacted with an MSU faculty member, so it is important to leave a positive impression by working hard,” added the Florida State University mass communication/media history doctoral graduate.

After returning to Mississippi State, Strout said he plans to share insight about the social media duties of news and sports anchors and reporters, meteorologists and other communication professionals.

“In the news writing courses, good writing is good writing; it never goes out of style,” Strout said. “Social media, however, has changed the way newsrooms operate, and this grant allows me to immerse myself into WCPO-TV/’s culture and pass along what I learn to our students.”

Additionally, the grant covers expenses for a WCPO-TV and representative to make a three- to five-day visit to the Starkville campus during the upcoming academic year.

Strout said he envisions the visiting professional speaking to the communication department’s practicum and broadcast performance students, as well as staff of the university’s Reflector student newspaper.

Along with the other grant recipients, Strout is a member of the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication, or AEJMC.

In addition to Mississippi State, this year’s grant recipients represent Arkansas State and Iowa State universities, Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville, University of Southern California, and University of Wisconsin, La Crosse. They will be completing their two-week social media experiences in Illinois, South Carolina, Texas and Washington, D.C.

Originally from Gardner, Massachusetts, Strout currently teaches electronic media newswriting and mass media law courses for one of Mississippi State’s largest academic units.

His research interests include 20th century media history, community newspapers and public broadcasting.

Published in 1999, Strout’s first book was “Covering McCarthyism: How the Christian Science Monitor Handled Joseph R. McCarthy, 1950-1954” (Greenwood Press). He also is the author of the book “Pass Christian and the Gazebo Gazette: A Gulf Community’s Post-Katrina Triumph” (The History Press, 2015), as well as numerous scholarly works. For more biographical information, visit

Part of the College of Arts and Sciences, MSU’s communication department enrolls more than 600 majors and includes nearly 30 full-time faculty members. It offers a bachelor of arts, with concentrations in broadcasting, communication studies, journalism, public relations and theatre. For more, visit

MSU is Mississippi’s leading university, available online at

Sasha Steinberg | Public Affairs

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