The Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. 2014 photo via Wikipedia.

Arts coverage for the 2023 Spoleto Festival USA and Piccolo Spoleto will be deeper and broader than ever before in the Charleston City Paper.

Eight arts journalism students finishing their master’s degree at the Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University will join City Paper staffer Chloe Hogan and veteran culture writer Bill Thompson to provide more than three dozen previews and reviews over the course of the 17-day festivals.

“There are 10 writers for 17 days covering dozens of shows and stories,” said editor and publisher Andy Brack. “Arts coverage through mid-June will be nothing short of awesome.  If you want to know what’s happening with Spoleto or Piccolo, the place to turn to is the City Paper.

Joel Kaplan, associate dean for graduate programs at the school, said the university is pleased to again partner with the City Paper.

“As the capstone experience for our arts journalism and communications master’s students, the ability to cover the Spoleto Festival and Piccolo Spoleto with such an accomplished news organization is an unparalleled experience,” he said.  “We are proud of our students and appreciate the opportunity afforded by the City Paper that allows them to share their expertise with its readers.”

Brack said this year’s coverage would feature more photo essays and video content as student journalists explore the Holy City.  

The 2023 team

Aiyana Hardy is a master’s degree student studying magazine, news and digital journalism. She enjoys music festivals, fashion and meeting new people. Hardy is originally from Connecticut and plans to return in hopes of becoming an arts and culture writer. 

Timia Cobb is a magazine, news and digital journalism master’s degree student and a Newhouse Graduate Minority Newspaper Fellow with She hails from Whitehouse, Texas, and completed her undergraduate degree at Texas State University. When she isn’t writing, she is catching up on classwork, re-watching “Sex and the City” and “Ugly Betty,” reading and ordering too much Doordash.

Tania Ortiz is a magazine, news and digital journalism master’s degree student at Syracuse University. She is a Newhouse Graduate Minority Newspaper Fellow and an intern for She is from Oceanside, California, and attended California State University at San Marcos for her undergraduate studies. 

Desi Gillespie graduated from the University of Alabama with a major in news media and a minor in music production. His bylines include the Crimson White, the University of Alabama alumni magazine and the Tuscaloosa News. He recently interned at Syracuse’s Subcat Studios to build on his audio education. Though he feels most comfortable writing about music and theater, Tuscaloosa’s small-town fine arts scene honed his skills in areas like the visual arts.

Jeremy Lynch graduated from the State University of New York at Oswego with a degree in broadcasting and mass communication. At WTOP-10, SUNY Oswego’s student-run TV station, Jeremy served as both a reporter and a graphics operator for its nightly news as well as a panelist for its entertainment news.

Since graduating from Utica University, June McCambridge has been learning and working in multiple disciplines. After working in theater, film, radio and music, she discovered her love for documenting and sharing different forms of art, which led her to Newhouse. June aims to not only report on new and interesting pieces of art, but to show the unseen parts of the craft that truly bring a piece to life. 

Natalie Rieth is an aspiring journalist captivated by visual arts and museum studies. She aims to capture strides made by the museum community in achieving a more all-inclusive and representational art scene. Natalie graduated from Gonzaga University with a degree in journalism and minors in art history and public relations, and she has interned at Jundt Art Museum and the Everson Museum of Art.

Joyelle Ronan graduated from Roanoke College with a major in communication studies and a concentration in screen studies. As a student, she served as section editor of the culture and wellness page and social media manager for the student-run newspaper, the Brackety-Ack, and spent a semester “abroad” in Washington, D.C., as an editorial intern for District Fray magazine. As a pop-culture enthusiast, Joyelle particularly enjoys television, film and theater.

Piper Starnes graduated from Clemson University with a degree in performing arts concentrated on piano and carillon. She has written and interned for the Aspen Music Festival and School, the Sigal Music Museum and the Brooks Center for the Performing Arts. While editor for Clemson’s research magazine, Decipher, she learned that with persistence and genuine curiosity, there is something interesting and meaningful to find in any subject, no matter how grand or niche.

Eric Grode is director of the Goldring Arts Journalism and Communications Program at the Newhouse School in Syracuse, N.Y.

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