Look for some exciting changes in the coming months for SCJ.
Following the 2014 SCJ Biennial conference held at Bethany College in Bethany, WV, Executive Council members responded to delegates’ challenge to boost national profile and participation in our every other year gathering.
We needed to look no further than Lori Brooks, Associate Executive Director of College Media Association (CMA). CMA offers arguably the nation’s most active gatherings for student media leaders twice yearly in cities known for vibrant, active media. Let’s face it; is there a media mecca more exciting than New York City?
College Media Association’s conventions have long set the standard for how to put together thought-provoking speaker line-ups; engaging hands-on workshops; and valuable educational coaching through critique and mentoring services. In short, colleges and universities want to go to CMA at least once a year, and in this day and age of shrinking travel budgets many of us had to make the painful decision to cut out other travel in order to do so.
As a result, SCJ Executive Council members proposed to strengthen an already good partnership with CMA, which Brooks and President Rachele Kanigel immediately welcomed.
What does this mean for SCJ chapters?
- Beginning in fall 2016, SCJ will host its biennial meeting in conjunction with CMA’s fall convention in Atlanta, GA. Chapters will be encouraged to arrive a half day early and participate in SCJ’s workshops and then stay and enjoy all of the excitement of CMA’s convention offerings.
- SCJ will now look to announce its major awards (including the Sheridan Barker Award for Adviser of the Year and the Arthur H. Barlow Student Journalist of the Year) at the CMA fall conventions in the special session dedicated to advising awards.
- At both the fall and spring CMA conventions, SCJ will propose and sponsor sessions designed specifically for SCJ chapters that address key student media issues. We’ve already scheduled some exciting sessions for New York 2015 that address First Amendment questions and also the value of entering student work in national contests.
- Each spring, SCJ will host a day at the CMA Adviser’s Lounge, where chapter advisers and those interested in learning more about SCJ can relax and meet each other and Executive Council members.
And this is just the beginning…We hope that these changes will excite even more chapters to engage and contribute to our growing ranks.
We’re excited to see you in New York!
Andrea Frantz, Ph.D. is associate professor of digital media at Buena Vista University, Iowa. She was installed as SCJ President at the 2014 Biennial. She’s an advocate of student journalists and the First Amendment. She’ll be blogging periodically about SCJ and other news.