The Reese News Lab is known for experimenting with new ideas in the media industry — and now they are looking at ways to increase innovation within their own student staff.
The lab, a project based out of the School of Media and Journalism, is trying to diversify its applicant pool, said Sara Peach, the lab's associate director. In the spring, Peach asked the Reese News Lab marketing team to think of new ways to recruit students from different backgrounds and experiences.
“We see better results when we bring a lot of different perspectives into the room — the ideas for startups gets better,” Peach said.
In past years, Peach said, applicants came primarily from the journalism school, which comprises around 16 percent minority students, according to the school’s website. According to a registrar report, 32 percent of UNC undergraduates reported a race other than white.
“We all, as journalists, have been trained in similar ways, so when you add someone from computer science or business — immediately the ideas are richer,” Peach said. “That works for people from different walks of life, too. Someone who is a first generation student brings a different perspective to the room. That’s what we want — a sort of check on people’s assumptions.”