The University of Florida's Photojournalism Program

Our students get around! In a throwback to the past,
UF graduates Loretta Rae Keith (second from
left) and Yvonne Lai (with scarf) hob-nob with three famous photojournalists
at the Eddie Adams Workshop XVI in New York. Nick Ut -- known
for the "Napalm Girl" photo -- and Joe Rosenthal -- who shot
"Raising the Flag at Iwo Jima" -- were among the notable guests at the
workshop coordinated by Eddie Adams (far right) -- "Saigon Street Execution."
(Rosenthal and Adams have since died.)

How many students?

At any one time, we have about 30 majors, from sophomores to seniors, and about half of them are in our NPPA student chapter. The hard workers find good internships (see paragraph below). Although there are no specific graduate-level photo courses, we sometimes have master's students working on a PJ emphasis. Photojournalism is a sequence within the journalism department, which has about 350 majors (including our 30 photo people). The entire College enrolls about 1,500 undergraduates. The other College departments are telecommunications, advertising, and public relations. The entire university has about 50,000 students at the moment. Check out a  Alumni Photo Gallery (always under construction) which features 15 of our former students.

Mike Weimar photographed
a festival for the
St. Petersburg Times while
working weekends during
his senior year at UF.

Experience outside class?

Many photo majors work a semester or two at the Independent Florida Alligator, the nation's largest student-run daily (circulation 31,000, Monday through Friday), and some string for the Gainesville Sun, our local paper. An internship is strongly recommended for students in the photojournalism program. Over the years, students have interned at the Miami Herald, Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel, Orlando Sentinel, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Arizona Republic, St. Petersburg Times, Nashville Tennessean, Eugene Register-Guard, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Flint Journal, Detroit Free-Press and other newspapers. Three of the most distinguished graduates are Tom Kennedy (class of 1972), former director of photography at National Geographic magazine; Stephanie Sinclair with the VII photo agency; and MaryAnne Golon, photo director at the Washington Post.

Gail Fisher, former special projects
photo editor at the Los Angeles
Times/Orange County Edition,
talks with an advanced photo
class during a visit.
She showed work
from several worldwide projects
that were self-assigned.

Photo by John Freeman

Awards and recognition?

Hearst Photojournalism Competition: Students have placed our program in the Top 10 spots nationally 18 times during the past 20 years. We won the championship in 2000-2001 and 2001-2002. For a sample of some of the older winning photographs, check out the news and sports entries by Rich Glickstein and Melissa Lyttle. Three UF students have won the shoot-out during the Championship Week in San Francisco: Mick Tercha, Rob Witzel and Tim Hussin. Matt Walsh place second in 2011.

College Photographer of the Year: UF has won several awards in the CPOY, including the gold in picture story by Jon Fletcher. In the 1994-95 contest, we won first place spot news, first place picture story and several honorable mentions. In 1995-96, student Brian Lukanic placed first in sports portfolio. Rich Glickstein did the same in 1997-98. Eric J. Larson, now an Orlando freelancer, was first in sports action that year. Justin Best won several honorable mentions.

Atlanta Photojournalism Seminar: Graduate students David Zentz and Jen Sens won Honorable Mention student portfolios in the past three years; Daron Dean placed second in 2004. Rich Glickstein won second place student portfolio at the Atlanta Seminar in 1998, and several awards in professional categories. Stephanie Sinclair won best student portfolio for 1996. Former student Adrian Dennis won honorable mention student portfolio twice since 1991.

Alexia Scholarship: In March 1999, graduating senior Melissa Lyttle was named winner of this $9,000 photojournalism scholarship offered through Syracuse University for a semester of study in London during fall 1999. She now runs the popular website. Roberto Westbrook was a $1,000 runner-up two years later.

Southern Short Course: Senior Rob Witzel won first place student portfolio and second place sports action (professional division) in April 2003. UF students took first and second place in the student portfolio division in April 1999. You've already met them above: Jon Fletcher and Melissa Lyttle. Fletcher also won two awards in professional categories. Want to see his winning portfolio?

Photo by John Freeman
Former teaching assistant
Rob Browman photographs
a student in the studio.
Rob went on to become
a multimedia producer with 
MediaStorm, and is now
with the Albuquerque Tribune.

Faculty and facilities?

JOHN FREEMAN teaches the beginning JOU3601 class (three sections), coordinates adjunct activities and internships. In summer, he runs the BERLIN JOURNALISM program.

JOHN KAPLAN teaches the Advanced Photo II class, JOU4605, in spring, PGY3610 (Survey) and a Design class. 

ROB WITZEL, Gainesville Sun photo editor, and TOMMY THOMPSON, a freelancer, teach JOU4603, the studio-oriented "Specialized" class; Rob in fall, Tommy in spring.

DARON DEAN, St. Augustine Record photo manager, teaches our JOU4604 Advanced Photojournalism class in fall semesters.

closed the B&W darkroom about 2002. and went all-digital. Classrooms are a mix of PC and Mac computers running PhotoShop CC. Standard assignment prints are made on HP ColorLaserJets. Advanced students do some work in InDesign and have almost unlimited access to a 10-station lab with five Mac computers and Epson high-quality printer. Starting with spring 2013, beginning students were provided with Canon T3i Digital Rebels for JOU3601. Incoming photo majors are encouraged to buy their own Canon or Nikon digital SLR cameras. For courses past the introductory JOU3601, such as jou4603, students must provide their own gear, including flash units.

COMPUTER REQUIREMENT: Students are required to have access to their own computer and software capable of completing necessary coursework. Adobe Premier Pro is required in some classes in the J-school. Most students own a laptop and their own web domain name.

For basic information about admission requirements and enrolling at (or transferring to) the University of Florida, visit the official UF homepage. For more photojournalism information, and to look at students' pictures, please click on my name below and follow the links on my homepage. Faculty are not directly involved in the admission process. Visit the official UF web page for all enrollment information. We do not mail out information packets; all material can be found on the Web.

To see more photo information, send email: John Freeman, Associate Professor of Journalism.

To see the official College of Journalism and Communications homepage, click here. You'll find course descriptions, information about other faculty, several webcams and more links concerning admissions, transfers, etc.

How to get in touch:

  • E-MAIL:
  • POSTAL MAIL: College of Journalism and Communications, P.O. Box 118400, Gainesville, FL 32611-8400
  • LOCATION: Room 3070 in Weimer Hall on the UF campus
  • PHONE AT WORK: (352) 392-0430
  • FAX: (352) 846-2673

                    ** SPECIAL PROGRAM IN MAY EVERY SUMMER **

"Berlin Journalism" now in its 10th year:
...was introduced by professor John Freeman in summer 2005 as a study-abroad class to give introductory and intermediate journalism majors a chance to write and photograph in a foreign setting for two weeks. It is open to all majors.

See the Berlin website of student work from May 2014.

<< Information on the next trip. >>

FROM THE 2005 Berlin Journalism Study-Abroad Program: Visitors pause at The Memorial for the Murdered Jews of Europe. (photo by Tricia Coyne)



(2008 - 2013 updates coming soon)

HEARST 2007 NEWS: UF came in SECOND PLACE during the 2006-2007 Hearst Photojournalism Competition and will be awarded $5,000. The students winning points for UF were: Jarrett Baker (twice), Tricia Coyne, Tim Hussin, Morgan Petroski and Celia Tobin. Petroski was one of six finalists at the "shoot-out" in San Francisco in June. 

HEARST 2006 NEWS: UF came in FIFTH PLACE during the 2005-2006 Hearst Photojournalism Competition. The students winning points for UF were: Danny Ghitis, Jessica Crossfield, Emily Harris and Matt Marriott. Ghitis submitted a portfolio in the semi-final round, where six students from 12 nationwide were selected for a "shoot-out" in San Francisco in early June. Ghitis made it to the finals and finished second place, winning $4,000 individually.

HEARST 2005 NEWS: UF came in SECOND PLACE during the 2004-2005 Hearst Photojournalism Competition and was awarded $5,000. The students winning points for UF were: Daron Dean, Emily Harris, Liza Shurik and Matt Marriott. Dean and Harris submitted portfolios in the semi-final round, where six students from 12 nationwide were selected for a "shootout" in San Francisco in late May. Dean made it to the finals and finished second place, winning $4,000 individually.

HEARST 2004 NEWS: UF came in SECOND PLACE during the 2003-2004 Hearst Photojournalism Competition and was awarded $5,000. The winning students were: Cynthia Wallace, Greg Undeen, Daron Dean, Kirsten Bartlett and Erica Brough. Senior Daron Dean was selected as a finalist and flew to San Francisco to compete with five other student photographers during a "shoot-out" in early June 2004. Daron finished second and won $4,000. He interned summer 2004 at the Anchorage Daily News in Alaska.

HEARST CONTEST results for 2002-2003: UF placed fourth place nationally. Students winning points for UF were:
Meggan Booker, Danielle Rappaport, Steven McAlpin, Tristan Maher and Andrea Blum.

ROB WITZEL, winner of the Hearst
shoot-out in San Francisco, June 2002
For the 2001-2002 academic year, UF photo students won first place in the nationwide Hearst Photojournalism competition.
The following students' entries got us the points: Glenn Danforth, Rob Witzel, Dave Cone, Brian Tietz, Meggan Booker and Lee Ferinden. The department was awarded $10,000 at the Hearst awards weekend in San Francisco June 4, 2002. Senior Rob Witzel won first place and $5,000 in the on-the-spot shoot-out during the awards weekend. He is now on chief phtoographer The Gainesville Sun.

For the 2000-2001 academic year, UF photo students won first place in the nationwide Hearst Photojournalism competition. The following students' entries got us the points: Glenn Danforth, Michael Tercha, Rob Witzel, Yvonne Malch, Kelly Danforth and Matt May. The department was awarded $10,000 at the Hearst awards weekend in San Francisco June 12, 2001. For the awards weekend, portfolios by Michael Tercha and Glenn Danforth qualified them for a "shoot-out," which was won by Tercha ($5,000). Danforth was a runner-up. 

HEARST 1999-2000
UF students came in second place (the third year in a row) for the 1999-2000 national Hearst Photojournalism Competition. Rich Glickstein and Michael Weimar were among the six finalists at the shoot-out in San Francisco. Weimar won third ($3,000) and Glickstein was unranked in 4th - 6th place ($1,000). To see work by the 1999-2000 "team" of Rich Glickstein, Michael Weimar, Matt May, Eric Zamora and Michael Tercha,
click here. Weimar is now at the Gainesville Sun, Glickstein is at the State in Columbia, SC, Tercha is at the Chicago Tribune, and May freelances from the Tampa area.

Mike Weimar self-portrait


Photo by Rich Glickstein

Glickstein now works at The State in Columbia, SC.
Fletcher is at the Times-Union in Jacksonville, FL.
Lyttle is at The Times in St. Petersburg, FL.

The 1998-99 UF "Hearst Team"
placed second in the nation
among 107 journalism schools.
In individual competitions, Rich
Glickstein (left) was first in
news/sports. Jon Fletcher was fifth
in portrait/feature and eighth in
picture story. Melissa Lyttle was
seventh in portrait/feature, eighth
in news/sports, and 18th in
picture story.

Round one: portrait/features
Round two: news/sports
Round three: picture stories

Page updated July 2014