Ilco Cvetanoski, Journalism for the Fearless

September 9, 2010

By: Melissa McGuire

Each year the International Media Training Center and The Voice of America invites journalists from Eastern Europe to the United States. The program picks young journalists, with four to 10 years work experience under their belt, to learn and practice with American journalists and professors in the U.S.

This year Bradley University invited journalist Ilco Cvetanoski from the Republic of Macedonia.

Macedonia was part of Yugoslavia between 1918 and 1991. On September 9, 1991, The Republic of Macedonia gained its independence.

According to Colman McCarthy of the Washington Post, the media-training program is "journalism school for the fearless."  It has educated more than 7,000 journalists from at least 140 countries.

Cvetanoski, well known in his home country for being an award-winning journalist, said he hopes to improve his journalistic abilities and English language skills. He wants to "feel and understand the everyday life of the U.S. citizen."

Developing his journalistic and media skills will give him a competitive edge upon his return to Macedonia.

Cvetanoski said American journalism and Macedonian journalism are essentially the same. The biggest difference is the access journalists in the U.S. have to money, equipment, and education. Through education, Cvetanoski said the American journalist has more opportunities for practical work.

Cvetanoski's passion for journalism, personable personality, and pride for Macedonia make him the perfect candidate for Bradley University.

Not only will Cvetanoski learn the American culture, but the students, faculty, and staff of Bradley University will benefit and grow from his stay.

Rickey Thein, a Bradley journalism professor, speaks highly of Cvetanoski and his culture.

"I have learned more from Ilco in the past three weeks than I have probably learned in a long time about Europe," said Thein. "He has a way of explaining the everyday life and culture in Europe that is so much easier to understand. He makes it much more interesting than if you were reading it out of a textbook."

When asked what Cvetanoski would like Americans to learn about his country, he had a simple and unique response.

"[I want Americans to] learn about my country tradition, culture, and our journalism," said Cvetanoski with a smile. "I think there are few things you can learn, including how to drink coffee from small cups."

So, if you see Cvetanoski on campus, stop and say hello to him. He will surely do the same with a smile on his face.