Eight Montenegrin Journalists Visit Cox Center While Democratic Change Takes Place in Yugoslavia

The Cox Center hosted eight journalists from Montenegro on October 6–the very day the Yugoslav people revolted against President Slobodan Milosevic's regime and expressed their support for Vojislav Kostunica, the democratically-elected President of Yugoslavia, of which Montenegro is a part.

The Montenegrin journalists said the visit provided them a unique opportunity to see how American media were covering an important international event through live reporting and the constant updating of American newspaper websites.

Dr. Tudor Vlad, visiting research scientist in the Cox Center, and Kornelia Probst-Mackowiak, Center program coordinator, welcomed and hosted the Montenegrin journalists in the Center. Cox Center Director Dr. Lee Becker, was in Europe on other Center work at the time. Dr. Vlad gave a presentation of the Cox Center activities to the journalists.

The journalists visited a news writing and reporting class in the Department of Journalism in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, in which the Cox Center is housed. The students had been given in advance the guests' resumes, and they had gathered information on the latest political developments in Belgrade.

Dusko Mihailovic, a 26-year-old news writer and radio broadcaster from Podgorica, Montenegro's capital, led the discussion and gave a brief history of the country and a perspective on current events. The opinions of the Montenegrin participants were so diverse that students gained first-hand knowledge of the complex reality in Yugoslavia.

"It was one of the most exciting discussions that we've had in our classes," said Marie Carmody, a graduate student. "It gave us the opportunity to have a better understanding of the situation in the Balkans. I think the fact that many of them were our age helped keep the discussion light and informal." The average age of the Montenegrin journalists was 25.

"I was surprised to see how interested the American students were in our presentation," said Senko Cabarkapa, deputy editor-in-chief of the daily newspaper Dan based in Podgorica. "It was a very profound dialog, and we also had the chance to learn about teaching methods in the news writing classes."

The journalists and their two accompanying translators had lunch with the faculty who teach print journalism in the Grady College. Later, Dr. Kent Middleton, head of the journalism department, gave them an overview of journalism education and the opportunities for international students in the Grady College.

Following the class visits, the Montenegrin journalists toured the facilities of the Grady College and the University of Georgia. The Montenegrin group traveled for two weeks in the United States under the auspices of the Washington Foreign Press Center of the U.S. Department of State.