Posts Tagged ‘spring regional conference’


Region 7 journalists head to Omaha for professional development

Journalists from across the region traveled to Omaha March 27-28 for the 2015 Society of Professional Journalists Region 7 Spring Conference.

Journalists from across the region traveled to Omaha March 27-28 for the 2015 Society of Professional Journalists Region 7 Spring Conference.

The Society of Professional Journalists Region 7 2015 Spring Conference came to a close Saturday at the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Journalists from Missouri, Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska made the trek to Omaha for a weekend of professional development. Organizers held conference sessions about social media, digital, work/family balance and more.

Journalists Mariah Stewart, John Beaudoin, Chase Snider and Ashley Jost discussed their coverage of the protests and police action in Ferguson, Mo. during the SPJ Region 7 conference's keynote presentation.

Journalists Mariah Stewart, John Beaudoin, Chase Snider and Ashley Jost discussed their coverage of the protests and police action in Ferguson, Mo. during the SPJ Region 7 conference’s keynote presentation.

Rob McLean, region 7 director for SPJ, said those who attended the conference had an opportunity to network with colleagues and get a leg-up on their next job hunt.

“One of the best parts about being an SPJ member is the opportunity to make new journalism connections and friends,” McLean said. “As the industry continues to change, those connections can be invaluable when journalists are looking for their next gig.”

The event ended with the regional Mark of Excellence Awards Saturday afternoon, where SPJ recognized the best journalism at the collegiate level within the region.

 

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Journalists enjoy conversation at the SPJ Region 7 Spring Conference meet-and-greet March 27.

Marjorie Sturgeon and Jonathan Garcia served on a panel, moderated by Sherrie Wilson, about digital in the newsroom.

Marjorie Sturgeon and Jonathan Garcia served on a panel, moderated by Sherrie Wilson (right), about digital in the newsroom.

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.

Conference site extends deadline on discounts

SPJ in STL 2013The special hotel rate reserved for attendees of the Region 5&7 conference next month in St. Louis has been extended by one week.

Management at the Drury Plaza Hotel at the Arch agreed this week to extend the conference rate after seeing a spike in registrations through March. The conference is scheduled for April 26-28 at the hotel.

Besides several programs, there will be Mark of Excellence awards handed out during dual luncheons at the conference.

But the hotel says just a few rooms remain in the block reserved for conference attendees, so anyone interested in an overnight stay needs to book reservations right away.

A happy-hour mixer with free drinks for hotel patrons is Friday, April 26, and a meeting of region leaders is slated for Sunday, April 28, starting at 9 a.m. The conference events take place from 9 a.m. through 5 p.m. that Saturday.

Drury management also urges those attendees who drive to the conference to arrive early for parking, as the baseball Cardinals will host the Pittsburgh Pirates a couple blocks away on Saturday and the hotel shares parking space with Busch Stadium.

Time is running out to apply for chapter grants

Time is running out to apply for a chapter grantNeed some cash for an event or program? Region 7’s chapters have until Dec. 5 to apply for the latest round of chapter grants, awarded by the national office.

The grants help fund unique, diverse and creative programming, and can total up to $500. Past grants have gone to programs on copy editing, diversity, ethics, the First Amendment, freelancing, and reporting techniques, among others.

Programs designed for the spring regional conference, however, are exempt.

All fully chartered chapters that have filed an annual report for 2011-12 are eligible, as well as new and reactivated chapters that are up to date on their paperwork with the national office.

Keep in mind though, grants are awarded only after chapters submit summary reports about their program, including receipts. Those reports and receipts are due within 15 days following the program.

So, apply now online. The deadline is midnight Eastern time on the due date.

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Region 7 Spring Regional Conference March 30-31 at Iowa State

From reporting for mobile devices, to crowd sourcing on Twitter, to writing for magazines in the digital age and finding your way as a freelancer, this year’s Region 7 Spring Regional Conference has something for everyone.

The conference kicks off with a welcome reception from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Olde Main Brewing Co. and Restaurant in the heart of downtown Ames, Iowa.

Saturday is packed full of sessions that will help inspire and energize student reporters, early- and mid-career journalists and seasoned veterans. The workshops, Mark of Excellence Awards ceremony and keynote luncheon will all conveniently take place at Iowa State’s Memorial Union, where a block of hotel rooms has also been reserved, with room rates starting at $80. Call 515- 296-6848 to book your room and mention SPJ to get the conference discount.

Register for the conference here.

Follow the Twitter hashtag #SPJRegion7 for updates.

The sessions and speakers include:
Keynote Speaker “Covering Politics in Iowa, the Presidential Battleground,” with Kathie Obradovich, political columnist for the Des Moines Register: In a presidential election year, Obradovich has a front row seat to all the drama of the Iowa caucuses, campaign trail and candidates. Hear how this Iowa State alum helps lead the Register’s award-winning political coverage and how her job as a political journalist has evolved in the age of Twitter.

Reporting for (and with) Mobile Devices,” with Jenn Jarvis, Internet director, KWWL Channel 7 in Waterloo, Iowa: Tablet and eReader ownership doubled just over Christmas, new Pew research shows. How does this change the way we do our jobs as journalists and storytellers?

 

“Using Social Media to Find Sources, Break News and Attract Attention,” with Dave Sheets, sports editor, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Learn how to use Twitter, Facebook and other social media to spot trends, establish sources, share stories and build your brand.

 

“Basics of Multimedia Storytelling,” with Mary Cox, newsroom coach: Want to boost your storytelling skills using multimedia? Cox, an Iowa State alum, will show you how to write web-optimized headlines and provocative abstracts, shoot better videos, gather strong sound and look and sound better on camera.

“Creating a Data and Document-Driven Newsroom,” with Joel Campbell, assistant professor in the Department of Communications at Brigham Young University and former reporter and editor at the (Salt Lake City) Deseret News: This session teaches journalists how to effectively integrate public data and documents into their reporting. Walk away with dozens of ideas for document-based stories, an understanding of state and federal freedom of information laws, and strategies for acquiring records, overcoming illegal denials and lowering outrageous copy fees. The session is useful for beginners and FOI veterans.

“Ethics in the Real World,” with Elizabeth Donald, reporter, Belleville News-Democrat in Belleville, Ill.: Donald, a newspaper reporter for 15 years, knows first-hand that personal ethics statements should not be crafted on the spot during a difficult assignment. It’s something we should all consider ahead of time to decide what we will do, what we don’t do and what we will hold our noses and do.

“Learn from Oprah’s Boss,” with Eileen Solomon, journalism professor at Webster University in St. Louis: Name a job in journalism and Solomon’s had it. The Emmy-award-winning producer spent 12 years in television and radio news in St. Louis, Miami, Tucson and Baltimore, where she was Oprah’s boss. Solomon knows how to produce the producers.

“Magazines in the Digital Age,” with Lori Blachford, journalism professor, Drake University: Who says magazines are dead? Blachford, who’s worked for The Des Moines Register, Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publications and Country Home, knows hows magazines are evolving and adapting to the world of online publications, tablets and smartphones.

“Taking the Plunge into Freelancing,” with David Sheets, president, St. Louis Pro Chapter, Society of Professional Journalists: As more journalists switch from staff positions at big media outlets to solo work, what do they need to do to get started, stand out among the increased competition and keep work steadily coming in?

Conference Schedule at a Glance

8:30 a.m.: Registration & Check In
8:30 a.m.: Breakfast/Regional Meeting
9-10:15 a.m.: Sessions
10:30-11:45 a.m.: Sessions
Noon-1:30 p.m.: Mark of Excellence Awards Luncheon, Keynote
1:45-3 p.m.: Sessions
3:15-4:30 p.m.: Sessions

4:45-5:15 p.m.: How Can We Revive the Iowa Pro Chapter?

This conference is made possible with support from our sponsors, which include the Iowa Newspaper Foundation and the Leo Mores Chapter of SPJ at Iowa State.

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