Posts Tagged ‘jccc’

Convergence is the word at Region 7 conference


Convergence journalists at JCCC

Student backpack journalists at JCCC prepare to cover the day’s events at the Region 7 Spring Conference.

For three years, Johnson County Community College asked to host the Society of Professional Journalists’ Region 7 Spring Conference, and when the moment arrived the 20,000-student campus in Overland Park, Kansas, delivered a grand performance.

JCCC is among the leading higher education institutions in the region on convergence journalism. The school placed its print, TV, and radio journalism components under one roof in 2012, and has used the word “convergence” in almost every discussion about media since. Consequently, convergence dominated the day.

Among the highlights, co-organizer Molly Baumgardner, JCCC’s journalism coordinator, started off with a presentation on good taste in journalism, explaining how the Seven Deadly Sins can kill a career before it starts. Sara Smith of The Kansas City Star reinforced the need for the three R’s — research, research, and more research — in writing entertainment reviews. And Maj. Bill Hisle of the Shawnee (Kan.) Police Department revealed the secret to dealing with public information officers.

Johnson County Community College is just a few blocks from the site of the 2011 Region 7 Spring Conference in Overland Park, Kansas.

Johnson County Community College is just a few blocks from the site of the 2011 Region 7 Spring Conference in Overland Park, Kansas. (David Sheets)

Other presenters included Mary Schulte, a photo editor at The Star, and Susan McSpadden, chief photographer for JCCC’s media relations department, explaining how wordsmiths can acquire the wisdom to become visual storytellers; and former Wichita Star reporters Dan Close and Laura Kelly recounting how the BTK serial killings changed their lives and their approach to journalism.

Maria Antonia, communications director for the Kansas City-based Bishop Sullivan Center and before that a veteran TV reporter and anchor in Kansas City, gave the keynote address ahead of the Mark of Excellence Awards banquet, which was catered by JCCC culinary arts students.

JCCC backpack journalists rushed from one event to the next to cover the conference for class projects. Their reports were posted by day’s end on YouTube.

The 2015 Region 7 Spring Conference is tentatively scheduled for Omaha, Nebraska, next spring.





Regional conference returns to Kansas in 2014

Johnson County Community College logoThe spring conference returns to Kansas in 2014. But the host is unique for Region 7.

Johnson County Community College, based in Overland Park and the largest institution of higher learning in Kansas, with more than 30,000 students. has been selected the first community college to host the conference for the region, winning a bid process that began at the conclusion of this year’s conference in St. Louis.

JCCC representatives first suggested their institution as a possible venue two years ago when the Kansas City Press Club and the national SPJ headquarters co-organized the 2011 conference, also in Overland Park. This year was the first that JCCC made a formal bid.

Corbin Crable, coordinator of JCCC’s Department of Journalism and Media Communications, said he thought it made sense for his school to host the conference because of the diverse curriculum and the attention paid to multimedia in his department.

The journalism program consists of four faculty and seven adjuncts teaching 17 classes that range from video production to advanced reporting. JCCC also has a variety of media internships in the Kansas City area.

“And now that we have the green light, we’ll immediately move forward and have the conference just as we planned,” Crable said upon hearing of JCCC’s selection.

He said the tentative conference dates are April 25-26, and overnight accommodations would be at the Doubletree by Hilton Hotel, 10100 College Boulevard. A pre-conference get-together would be that Friday at Hayward’s Pit Bar B Que, about a mile west of the hotel.


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