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Baxter to join SoCJ as Colvin Center director, visiting professor of foreign reporting

Sarah baxter
Photo by Jez Coulson

Sarah Baxter, a recognized foreign correspondent, will join the School of Communication and Journalism this fall as a visiting professor of foreign reporting and the director of the Marie Colvin Center for International Reporting.

Last semester, Baxter helped to teach the journalism capstone course. In that course, upper-division journalism students research and write one long-form multimedia piece over the course of the semester; several of their projects have received Hearst journalism awards.

“Sarah is a deeply talented and dedicated journalist who also strongly believes in mentoring and supporting the next generation,” said Laura Lindenfeld, dean of the School of Communication and Journalism and executive director of the Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science. “She has covered some of the biggest international stories over the span of her career, and her leadership of the Marie Colvin Center will underline the importance of courageous foreign reporting in our interconnected world.” 

Baxter worked her way up from a reporter to deputy editor of the Sunday Times of London and editor of its award-winning magazine. Over the years, she also covered the Obama and Trump campaigns, the election of Nelson Mandela in South Africa, the rise of Hamas in Gaza, the refugee crisis in Greece, and conditions at Guantanamo Bay for the Sunday Times and other newspapers and magazines. More recently, she’s written about efforts to uncover and atone for the abuses of Canada’s residential schools.

Baxter has served as a mentor and advocate for other reporters and aspiring journalists as well. She has mentored fellow members of the Women in Journalism organization, helped to launch an LGBTQ+ group for employees at News UK, and assisted with a program for aspiring journalists from underrepresented communities in the UK.

In addition to teaching journalism classes, Baxter will serve as director of the Marie Colvin Center. The Center, founded in 2013, honors the late Marie Colvin, who was killed by Bashar al-Assad’s regime during the war in Syria. It champions the causes for which Colvin gave her life: human rights, justice for victims of war, support for refugees and attention to the safety of reporters at risk. 

The Colvin Center offers an annual lecture by a prominent international correspondent, a fellowship for recent graduates to work in an overseas bureau at the Wall Street Journal, and the Journalism Without Walls study abroad program. Shortly after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Center hosted a teach-in about the war and conditions on the ground at the time.

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