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Forum on the Future “News, Real or Fake?”

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Sunday, January 28 at Jewett Hall, UMA Augusta Campus

The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) College of Arts and Sciences and the UMA Senior College (UMASC) announce the next Forum on the Future entitled: News, Real or Fake? on January 28, 2018 from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at Jewett Hall on UMA’s Augusta campus. (A snow date is scheduled for February 4, 2018). There will be a panel presentation with a refreshment break, followed by a question and answer period. Forum on the Future presentations are intended to provide a variety of ideas on a subject, and are not intended to be debates.

The January forum will be introduced and moderated by Marilyn Canavan. Marilyn is a former state legislator representing part of Waterville, Maine and the retired Director of the State Ethics Committee.

Today we are hearing repeated accusations of news items being real or fake, and many are confused about how these terms are used and when they are accurate. Accusations using the term fake abound, and even trusted sources are questioned or even denigrated. Our trust in the freedom and integrity of the press is a basic and key aspect of our Democracy, and is being eroded by these attacks. We look forward to hearing from the following panelists whose expertise will give us an inside look at determining between real and fake news.

Mal Leary is the political correspondent for Maine Public, who is based at the State House in Augusta. A winner of many awards, he reports regularly on state government and politics. He is a native Mainer, and a lifelong journalist. He was the former owner and operator of the Capital News Service also based in the State House. In addition to his writing, he also belongs to the Society of Professional Journalism and Editors, and is the President of the National Freedom Coalition of Journalists based at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, and Vice President of the Maine Freedom of Information Coalition.

Bill Nemitz is a columnist for Maine Today publishing who comes to us from a wide range of experience. He is an experienced wartime correspondent, having followed our troops three times to Iraq, and twice to Afghanistan. In fact, in 2004 he was cited as Maine Journalist of the year by the Maine Press Association for his reporting of the Maine Army National Guard 133rd Engineering Battalion in Iraq. In 2015 he became a member of the Maine Press Association Hall of Fame, and in the same year received a Distinguished Service Award from the New England Newspaper Association.

Jessica Lowell of Wiscasset is a journalist for the Kennebec Journal who has spent 30 years reporting and editing stories large and small in Maine, New Hampshire, New York and Wyoming. She has won awards for investigatory and explanatory journalism and is a Fellow for the Knight Certification for Specialized Journalism and the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources.

UMASC is open to all who are 50 years or older, their spouses and partners. For courses and other programs, please call 621-3551, e-mail us at umasc@maine.edu or check us out online at umasc.org.