This unit was created by Tracy Johnson, a high school visual arts and digital media educator  in Chicago, IL, as part of the spring 2021 Pulitzer Center Teacher Fellowship program on Journalism and Justice. It is designed for facilitation across approximately six 60  minute live or virtual class periods.

For more units created by Pulitzer Center Teacher Fellows in this cohort, click here.


  • Define migration and how and why people migrate.
  • Identify how a journalist prepares to write an article.
  • Identify how and why a journalist uses investigative/research and interview techniques to gather the proper information to correctly approach the idea of writing an article.
  • Use journalism investigative/research and interview skills to find a school or job that you would like to gain entry.

Unit Overview

Migration normally happens out of necessity: work, natural resources, or safety for one’s life. The desire to migrate may be a solution for many but there are barriers that can prohibit the need for safety and prosperity. A large number of students’ families are renting or experiencing homelessness in many parts of the United States. They are entering secondary education ready to get jobs to help their families to gain or just maintain a stable home. Students are also preparing for their small individual migrations from their current schooling location and/or homes to a place of post-secondary education or occupation.

Their coming journeys, while exciting, may have similar motivations of those that migrate from their present homelands. Students can look at people migrating internationally and their stories of struggle and triumph, finding kinship, and hopefully not feeling isolated in their own situations. 

Having students learn the techniques that investigative journalists use for interviewing can be learned and repurposed for interviewing for universities and employment. Using journalism skills as a tool to break through postcolonial misperceptions of inadequate candidacy for entry into highly competitive academic, labor, and professional positions encompasses the spirit that migrants hold as they leave their homelands.

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