Program overview

History of the Medill cherub program

This interactive timeline shows the program’s rich 79 year history and its notable alumni.


Female interviews women on the street.

Rejection letters

Cherubs recount their experiences trying and failing to find sources for their assignments. Although everyone succeeded in writing their stories, they hit a few rough patches along the way. This podcast features cherubs Sydney Bergan, Kaitlin Musante, Lauren Fromkin, Dylan Carlson-Sirvent and Eileen Chen.

Girl with an open computer screen and phone scrolling.

Status update: Learning about personal branding

Cherubs take on the Twitterverse after a presentation from the community associates.

A girl edits her Adobe After Effects project on the computer.

Designing women (and men) experiment with multimedia journalism

Cherubs initially intent on becoming hard-news reporters found a passion in design and digital story telling.

Two students hold up an old poster for the Orson Wells movie "Citizen Kane." The poster is animated with bright colors and says "It's Terrific!" across the middle.

Citizen Kupetz: Instructor spotlights movies about journalism

Movies spur discussions of journalism issues and ethics with students at the program.

Female journalist speaks in front of students.

Speakers share investigative reporting tips, experiences

Cherubs got a first-hand look at investigative reporting from professional and student reporters.

An article has various corrections written on it in black pen.

Comparing instructor editing styles

From John Kupetz’s signature green scrawl to Mary Lou Song’s loopy purple, students learned from their instructors’ edits.

Female student, left, holds camera and microphone up to male student (center) sitting on steps as a third student (right) looks on.

Better together: Cherubs choose collaboration

Admissions is competitive, but journalism students at the program collaborate to succeed together.

Group of around twenty high-schoolers chat in small groups of four to five.

Community associate organizes workshop on covering marginalized communities

Diversity in the newsroom and reporting on diverse populations have been on Marissa Martinez’s mind since she was a cherub in 2016. Now as a CA, she created a workshop on covering marginalized communities.

Three students, viewed through a camera, sit at a newsdesk.

Sunday clubs offer primers in digital storytelling, creative writing

Cherubs can participate every Sunday in clubs to learn and develop broadcast, writing, coding, photography and audio skills.

Two girls read the edits on their newspaper.

Instructor marks up student newspapers in green

John Kupetz critiqued SNO award winners and brand new papers alike, giving editors some much-needed advice.

A man presents a TV broadcast room to a group of journalism students.

Cherubs take to field of sports journalism

The program offers opportunities to learn more about the ever-changing field of sports media.

Guest speakers

Medill cherubs in the front row of auditorium speak to a man in a cargo jacket.

Photojournalist encourages cherubs to “keep in flight”

John H. White delivered cherubs’ final guest lecture, speaking not only about photography but also the value of journalism.

A woman speaks to a small group of journalism students in a lecture hall.

Peace activist and journalist Ruth Ebenstein inspires cherubs

An Israeli writer and peace activist shared her story and how the power of friendship transcends conflict.

A woman presents slides on a podium in front of journalism students.

Keeping up with Kendall

Mic opinion video producer and 2010 cherub Kendall Ciesemier explains how social media impacts journalism.

A woman presents slides at a podium.

Maier mania leads to lecture, photo contest and walk

Cherubs become Vivian Maier fans after a lecture about her photography by Medill author and professor.

Reporting and editing

Cherub works on her laptop in the broadcast lab.

2018: A journalist’s odyssey

For their trend stories, cherubs had to call and email day and night and endure numerous rejections. Here are some of their stories.

A teacher and a student look at the student's laptop together.

How cherubs handle constructive criticism

Cherubs describe their experiences being critiqued by their instructors and how they improved.

A male student talks on the phone while taking notes for an interview.

Never have I ever broken a record

Some cherubs went the extra mile for their interviews — both literally and figuratively.

A man holds up a newspaper written in Mandarin in front of a long table.

Cherubs learn to be effective editors

The program helps students build skills they can apply to their high school publications.

Female dancer in red dress and feather headpiece gets touch-ups before performance at parade.

Cherubs find unique stories at Evanston’s July Fourth parade

Cherubs endured the beating sun, miles of walking, and the challenge of finding a unique Fourth of July story when they set off to interview people at Evanston’s annual parade.

Cherub faces a computer screen with the Writer's Diet highlighting weak words.

Cut the fat: Cherubs learn The Writer’s Diet

Fitness is important, but lean, cut writing can draw more eyes than any physical specimen. The Writer’s Diet, an intense fitness regimen, helps tighten cherubs’ writing.