Loyola University Chicago

Commencement

Nikole Hannah-Jones

School of Communication & School of Continuing and Professional Studies

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Author, Journalist, Activist

Nikole Hannah-Jones covers racial injustice for The New York Times Magazine, and she has spent years chronicling the way official policy has created—and maintains—racial segregation in housing and schools. Her deeply personal reports on the black experience in America offer a compelling case for greater equity. She has written extensively on the history of racism, school re-segregation, and the disarray of hundreds of desegregation orders, as well as the decades-long failure of the federal government to enforce the landmark 1968 Fair Housing Act. She is currently writing a book on school segregation called The Problem We All Live With, which will be published on the One World imprint of Penguin/Random House.

Hannah-Jones was named a 2017 MacArthur Genius Grant Fellow (one of only 24 people chosen globally) for “reshaping national conversations around education reform” and for her reporting on racial re-segregation in our schools. Her piece “Worlds Apart” in The New York Times Magazine won the 2017 National Magazine Award for “journalism that illuminates issues of national importance” as well as the Hillman Prize for Magazine Journalism. In 2016, she won a Peabody Award and George Polk Award for radio reporting for her This American Life story, “The Problem We All Live With.”

Also in 2017, Hannah-Jones was named Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists, and she was named to The Root 100, an annual list of the most influential African Americans aged 25–45. Her reporting won Deadline Club Awards, Online Journalism Awards, the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Public Service, the Fred M. Hechinger Grand Prize for Distinguished Education Reporting, and the Emerson College President’s Award for Civic Leadership.

Hannah-Jones co-founded the Ida B. Wells Society for Investigative Reporting with the goal of increasing the number of reporters and editors of color. She holds a Master of Arts in Mass Communication from the University of North Carolina and earned her Bachelor of Arts in History and African-American Studies from the University of Notre Dame.

For the Institute for Advanced Journalism Studies, she investigated social changes under Raul Castro and the impact of universal health care on Cuba’s educational system. In 2007, she was selected by the University of Pennsylvania to report on the impact of the Watts Riots for a study marking the 40th anniversary of the Kerner Commission report. Along with The New York Times, her reporting has been featured in print in ProPublica, The Atlantic magazine, Huffington PostEssence magazine, The Week MagazineGrist, and Politico Magazine. On radio stations across the country, her worked has appeared on Face the NationThis American Life, NPR, the Tom Joyner Morning Show, MSNBC, C-SPAN, and Democracy Now.