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Widener to Co-Sponsor April 26 Debate About Whether Political Coverage Helps or Hurts our Democracy

Widener University and West Chester University are co-sponsoring an April 26 debate led by WHYY and the Eastern Communication Association titled “Is Media Coverage of Politics Helping or Hurting our Democracy?” The event takes place Sunday, April 26 from 9 a.m. – 11 a.m. at the Sheraton Society Hill.

This event is open to the public and comes at a time when media coverage of politics is intensifying as political leaders are announcing their bid to become president of the United States in 2016.

WHYY Vice President of News and Civic Dialogue Chris Satullo will moderate the panel.

The panelists will feature:

Dr. Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania and author or co-author of 15 books, including“unSpun: Finding Facts in a World of Disinformation;” “Packaging the Presidency: A History of Criticism of Presidential Campaign Advertising;” and “Beyond the Double Bind: Women and Leadership;” Dr. John Gastil, professor in communication arts and sciences and political science at Penn State and author of “Political Communication and Deliberation;” Dr. Richard Vatz, professor of rhetoric and communication at Towson University and author of “The Only Authentic Book of Persuasion;” and Stephen Janis, two-time Emmy award-winning investigative reporter for FOX news based in Baltimore.

Register online at . Cost is $15 for ECA conference participants, $30 for non-participants and $20 for WHYY members (register as community member). A continental breakfast will be served at 8:30 a.m.

Widener University is a metropolitan university that connects curricula to social issues through civic engagement. Dynamic teaching, active scholarship, personal attention, leadership development and experiential learning are key components of the Widener experience. A comprehensive doctorate-granting university, Widener is comprised of eight schools and colleges that offer liberal arts and sciences, professional and pre-professional curricula leading to associate, baccalaureate, master’s, and doctoral degrees. The university’s campuses in Chester, Exton and Harrisburg, Pa., and Wilmington, Del., serve some 6,000 students. Widener is proud to be a tobacco-free university. Visit the university’s website,