University of Moratuwa, Katubedda, Sri Lanka.

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The Rotaract Club of Alumni of University of Moratuwa prides itself in keeping written records straight. Behind their continued excellence in the art of the written word is a commitment to improve writing skills of its members who generally do not come from journalism backgrounds. To this effect, Rotaract Alumni Mora organized ‘Pen Down’, a professional development workshop for its members to enrich their writing skills.

On the 16th of December 2017, renowned Sri Lankan journalist, chief editor of Daily News Sri Lanka, Mr. Pramod de Silva was invited to conduct this special workshop at the University of Moratuwa premises. The editor shared his knowledge in journalism, starting with the basics of Newspapers, discussing headlines, editorials, straplines, features and explaining how each is structured and formed. Articles with shuffled paragraphs were given to participants to reorder using the techniques taught and even write a piece themselves.

Mr. De Silva also shared his views on Sri Lankan journalism including media freedom and ethics. The workshop partakers were asked questions and encouraged to share their own thoughts and opinions on some controversial topics famously covered by the media. The pros and cons of social media was also a debated topic in this interactive session. Issues such as fake news; online bullying and defamations were discussed along with solutions that could be found in responsible journalism.

Finally, the celebrated journalist also shared his own favorite editorials, newspapers and specific features while participants too chipped in with their pet journals and online mediums. With the level of interaction, interest and enthusiasm displayed, it was evident that the workshop was beneficial and enjoyable to all.

By Rtr. Kalpanee Jayatilake

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