StreamLab is part of the Online News Association’s “Hack Curriculum” Fund for Innovation in Journalism Education. West Virginia University Reed College of Media was awarded a $35,000 micro-grant is part of ONA’s competitive Challenge Fund for Innovation in Journalism Education in 2014 to encourage journalism programs to experiment with new ways of providing news and information and to seed collaborative news experiments in living labs – their communities.

StreamLab is a community reporting project in which students and faculty are beta testing a new sensor from MIT’s Open Water Project to experiment with citizen science, sensor journalism and to increase public engagement around contaminated water issues.

Partnering with WVU water researchers, West Virginia Public Broadcasting, The Charleston Gazette and noted sensor expert John Keefe of the WNYC Data News Team, StreamLab team members are testing new practices in journalistic storytelling using collaboratively sourced water-quality data.

Read more about our entry and about all the Challenge Fund winners on the ONA website. For more information on the Reed College of Media at West Virginia University, visit

Instructors for the course include College of Media faculty Teaching Assistant Professor Emily Corio, Associate Professor John Temple, and Associate Professor Dana Coester, as well as Innovators-in-Residence John Keefe, senior editor for data news at public radio station WNYC in New York, and Dave Mistich, digital editor and coordinator for West Virginia Public Broadcasting,

The College’s Innovator-In-Residence program is supported by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Through the ONA micro grant, this project is also administered with support from Excellence and Ethics in Journalism Foundation, The Robert R. McCormick Foundation, the Democracy Fund and the Rita Allen Foundation.