Trip Highlights

Trip Highlights

  • Practice filmmaking and editing with National Geographic producers and videographers.
  • Go behind the scenes at National Geographic headquarters, learning about the organization’s history and current initiatives.
  • Meet a National Geographic magazine photo editor, and hear how they piece together stories for the publication.
  • Explore the National Mall, and see our nation’s iconic monuments during a boat trip along the Potomac River.
The National Geographic Experts were extremely patient with us and taught us so much! The experience would not have been the same without them.
Brianna C., Student Traveler, 2019

Itinerary

Itinerary

Since its founding more than 130 years ago, National Geographic has been instrumental in the evolution of storytelling by pushing the boundaries of how critical knowledge is collected and shared. From our base at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., get an inside look at National Geographic headquarters to see how this organization harnesses the power of visual media and journalism to effect change on a global scale; and work with photo editors, videographers, and a public speaking coach to create compelling media of your own design.

Travel to Washington, D.C. and settle into your dormitory at Georgetown University. The workshop will be led by instructors who have experience in the themes of our program: Multimedia Journalism, Visual Storytelling, and National Geographic: Past and Present. Each day begins with a hands-on workshop or field project followed by a lively seminar to further apply what we’ve learned. Our instructors will guide us through each activity and facilitate workshops and discussions with National Geographic Experts. We’ll have inside access to National Geographic headquarters; and Georgetown University—located within steps of trendy shops and lively restaurants—will serve as our classroom as we build the skills necessary to tell stories that make a difference.

The program kicks off with a behind-the-scenes tour of National Geographic headquarters, where we’ll hear about the organization’s storied history and the latest initiatives being launched from within this epicenter of exploration. Sit down with Susan Goldberg, editor in chief of National Geographic magazine, to get an insider’s perspective on how the magazine’s powerful storytelling has shed light on global issues and served as a change agent throughout history. Browse the photo and video archives for a look at how storytelling methods have evolved over time, and hear from the in-house editorial team on the ways in which their work supports National Geographic’s mission. Then meet the engineers who develop field equipment for National Geographic explorers to use in remote places around the world, and visit the National Geographic Museum to see the latest exhibit.

Spend time with National Geographic senior producer Sarah Joseph to learn how she and her team of videographers and producers use film to illuminate important issues, such as wildlife conservation and vanishing cultures; and hear how their films have been instrumental in some of the organization’s most successful conservation campaigns. Then join a workshop on the fundamentals of documentary filmmaking. Choose a topic you wish to investigate, and bring it to life through filmmaking and video editing as you learn about how National Geographic uses science-based storytelling to protect critical environments. Participate in a public speaking workshop led by a National Geographic staff member who helps explorers craft stories for live events at headquarters, and practice presenting your own story.

Meet with Whitney Johnson, the director of visual and immersive experiences at National Geographic, to hear how she works with photographers to tell impactful stories through imagery. Discuss the strategy behind photo selection, master the basics of magazine layout and graphic design, and join National Geographic staff for a conversation about the changing landscape of journalism and media. Then hit the streets to apply what you’ve learned, taking pictures and conducting interviews on an issue of importance to you.

In the evenings, take a break from your workshop to explore Washington, D.C. Wander past the White House, Washington Monument, and Lincoln Memorial; cruise the Potomac River on a boat tour, or track down the city’s best food trucks. Cap off your workshop with a private celebration at Nat Geo headquarters, where you will have the opportunity to share your capstone project proposal with staff.