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Ira "Bill" Cole

Ira B. Cole is a member of the Medill Hall of Achievement.

He was dean of Medill from 1957 until 1984, during which time he pushed the notion of having students work in professional news organizations as one element of their college coursework. In 1958, he initiated a program that allowed graduate students to work for the City News Bureau in Chicago, and later initiated the “Teaching Newspaper” program – today known as “Journalism Residency” – that allowed undergraduate students to work in a professional newsroom or setting for a school quarter.

In his 26 years as dean, Cole led efforts to develop the graduate broadcast program, and the Medill News Service in Washington, D.C., and Chicago.

Cole earned his bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Illinois in 1948 after serving in the U.S. Army from 1942-1945. He then earned a master’s degree in journalism from Illinois in 1952.

Cole died in 2002.

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