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The Catholic School for Journalism and Communications, which offers a two-year part-time training programme,  was founded by His Eminence Cardinal Kazmierz Swiatek on July 3, 2000.  The school is located in the Holy Trinity Mission House in the city of Baranowitschi in western Belarus and is administered by the Divine Word Missionaries. The project originated from the initiative of Tatjana Schimkowitsch, editor-in-chief of the journal Dialog, and Br. Korneliusz Konsek SVD, who are also taking charge of its management.  The school was realised through the help of   Sophie Jannusch, representative of CAMECO (Catholic Media Council), which has its headquarters in Aachen.  Through the arrangement made by CAMECO the contact with Katholiek Instituut voor die Massamedia (KIM) in Nijmegen, Netherlands was established.

 

The  Planning Phase

The announcement for the recruitment of the first students could only be sent through the Church’s communication channels, since the state licence provided with corresponding restrictions.  Nevertheless one’s acceptance to the school is not confessionally connected.

The applicants were invited to Baranowitschi on September 1 and 7, 2000 for an entrance examination.  The examination consisted of two parts.  First, they were required to write an essay.  The second part of the examination consisted of a conversation, in which the applicant could take position once more from the written theme, introduce themselves, give piece of information about their motivation to take part of the study and about their occupational plans.

Finally it was decided that all 19 applicants be accepted.  The number was in fact bigger as expected (it was predicted to have a maximum of 15 Students), yet the after a thorough consulatation, the members of the admission committee agreed, to give all the applicants a chance.

 

Classes

On Sept 16, 2000 ( a day before the Church’s Day of Massmedia) began the first school year at the School of Journalism and Communications, opened with the celebration of the holy mass with Fr. Jan Glinka, the representative for social communications of the bishops’ conference, as main celebrant.  The opening programme of the school was concluded with a dinner for all guests, professors and students.  The first lectures were held immediately afterwards.

The lectures are held twice a month during weekends.  The students can stay in Holy Trinity Mission House with free of charge board and lodging.   This cost is shouldered by the school.  The Saturdays’ lecture are takes place from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m., with a one-hour noon break.