September 20th Photojournalism PIoneer

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Nikki Wesley works for Metroland Media

Oakville – Keith Childerhose has Diffuse Panbronchiolitis and is in the ICU at Toronto General Hospital. He is on the waiting list for a lung transplant at the highest priority, status 2. Here his is pictured with his wife Sarah Taylor, who rarely leaves his side. January 22, 2013
Nikki Wesley/Metroland Media Group
Photographers Note – Childerhose was given a successful transplant days after this photo was taken. He is alive and got back to camping in Algonquin Park.

After starting her career at the Mississauga News in 2007, Nikki Wesley moved on to the Halton Division of Metroland Media. There she has been shooting for the Burlington Post, Oakville Beaver, Milton Champion and West of the City Magazine for nine years. She lives in Burlington with her husband, kids and two massive dogs.

Photojournalism program testimonial

“After graduating from University with a BA in English, I wasn’t sure what to do. Loyalist College helped steer my career in the right direction. Thanks to the Photojournalism program’s teachers, I have a job where it feels like “I have a front row seat on life.” I learned just how much I love visual storytelling here, and I have also made wonderful contacts through the advisory board.”


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Julia McKay works as multi-media journalist

KINGSTON, Ont. (17/01/2013) – Kingston Fire and Rescue were called to a vehicle fire in the eastbound lane of the 401 between the OnRoute service centre and Gardiner Rd just after 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013. The driver and passenger were returning to Kingston from spending the day in Belleville when they noticed smoke coming from the engine. According to OPP Constable Marc Gallant, they had pulled over to the side of the road and were in the process of calling CAA when the car engine caught fire. No one was injured. Julia McKay – Kingston Whig Standard

For the past five years, Julia McKay has been a multi-media journalist working full-time as a member of the newsroom at the Kingston Whi­g–Standard.

After 10+ years in the customer service/technical support fields, Julia decided it was time for a change and went back to school in 2011, taking Photojournalism at Loyalist College.

During her time as a Loyalist photoj, Julia made connections with her hometown paper and worked as a freelance weekend/spot news photographer for both the daily and weekly papers.

Since graduating in 2013, she secured a full-time job at the Kingston This Week, before the newsroom was merged with the city’s daily paper, The Whig-Standard.

On the education beat, Julia regularly interacts with students, families and the community, taking photos and telling stories ranging from classroom education to sporting events, school safety and funding for both local school boards.

As well, she is in the sixth year of her 365 Photo challenge, taking a photo a day, every day, to help keep her eyes sharp and always looking for possible standalone photos.

Julia received the Paul Henry Award for commitment and dedication to spot news coverage in 2013, the Award of Excellence in Spot News from the College Photographer of the Year, a worldwide competition, in 2013 and is nominated for an Ontario Newspaper Award for sports in 2018.

Photojournalism program testimonial

“Good things happen when you talk to people” – Frank O’Connor

This is just one of the many lessons I still tell myself, learned during my time in the photojournalism program at Loyalist College.

The program faculty, with their years of combined real-world experiences, provided me with the skills and understanding about how to approach people, keep objective, and how to tell a compelling story.

Being a mature student, there turned out to be many opportunities to learn, as well as share my experiences, with faculty and my fellow classmates.  I greatly improved my photography skills, as well as being able to share my computer skills as a tutor.

The faculty goes out of their way to mentor their students.

Through hands-on assignments and real-world applications, I learned different ways to step outside of my comfort zone and to explore my surroundings.

This program helps develop a variety of different styles of photojournalists, from those who work in community newspapers, like me, to wire photographers, freelancers, news editors, documentarians, videographers, magazine photographers and more.

I would highly recommend this program for anyone interested in telling stories, capturing memorable photos and learning about the world around them.


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Zachary Prong focuses on long-term project

A smudging ceremony on Cote First Nation, Saskatchewan. Performed to cleanse a place of its negative energy, it was organized by Stanley Cote, a member of the Winnipeg-based First Nation Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement, a civil rights organization with chapters across North America. They travelled to Cote to lend support to a community that has been shaken by a string of suicides, violent deaths and overdoses in recent years. Half way through the walk, the group stopped at the place where Stanley’s 19 year-old son Tre was accused of beating 24 year-old Freedom Gladue to death one night this past February. Some of Freedom’s relatives held each other and sobbed as Stanley and others said a prayer. “I hope it gave them some sense of peace. I feel terrible about my son killing that kid. He was only 24. And now my son is gone for I don’t know how long too. I don’t condone what he did, but I love him no matter what. He’ll always be my son. I look at the situation and my sons have nothing to turn to. They’re just hopeless. All they got is gangs, violence, drugs.” Stanley recently founded a youth warrior society on Cote, “Indigenous Warriors,” a group he hopes will give young people an opportunity to confront and solve problems that they face in their community. (2017/07/06) Photo by Zachary Prong

Zachary Prong graduated from the Loyalist College Photojournalism Program in 2016. He has since worked as a photographer and videographer for the Winnipeg Free Press, Reuters and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. He is currently living in Winnipeg where he is working on a long-term documentary project. His work has been recognized by the News Photographers Association of Canada, College Photographer of the Year and he was a participant in the Eddie Adams Workshop.

Photojournalism program testimonial

I came to Loyalist not expecting much more than a grounding in the basics of photojournalism, but the program proved to be intellectually rewarding in ways I hadn’t foreseen. With the guidance and critical feedback of my instructors and classmates, the projects I worked on as a student allowed me to wrestle with the many challenges presented by documentary work. More than just teaching me how to make pretty pictures, I was forced to consider all kinds of ethical issues and think more deeply about what I hope to achieve with my practice. But perhaps most importantly, through my classmates, teachers and other alumni, I’m now part of a community of passionate visual storytellers working across the globe.


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April 25 Photojournalism Pioneer

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