atlanta logologo_cornerSCJ 2016 Biennium Conference linked with #CMAATL16!

This year, SCJ will host its biennium conference in Atlanta on Wednesday, October 26 during the pre-conference workshop day of the Fall National College Media Convention 2016.

Each chapter is invited to bring two chapter delegates, and as many students as they would like, to the day-long working conference. The meeting will begin at 1 p.m. in the Piedmont Room at the Hyatt Regency Hotel. The day will conclude around 9 p.m., after dinner and keynote address by Mary Beth Tinker.

Biennium Registration

Registration is now closed. Contact Executive Director Sally Renaud for more information. 

Biennium Agenda

After the delegate’s committee meetings, all members will go into a breakout session with David Wickert, award-winning reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Students will also hear from keynote speaker, Mary Beth Tinker, plaintiff in the Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School District case in 1969, about young adult’s free speech rights.

MB @ Newseum.JPG

Mary Beth Tinker (Photo credit: Maria Bryk for the Newseum

SCJ will also host a FREE dinner for all in attendance, at which time, major award winners will be announced.

SCJ/CMA Sessions Lineup

SCJ is sponsoring a number of sessions during the CMA conference.

Wednesday, October 26

Session name: SCJ National Council Meeting

Time: 1 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Room: Piedmont

Session description: By invitation only: Members of the Society for Collegiate Journalists’ National Council will gather for their annual fall meeting.

Thursday, October 27

Session name: At the Schoolhouse Gate: Student Free Speech and the Tinker Ruling

Time: 9-9:50 a.m.

Room: Greenbriar

Session description: It’s been 50 years since Mary Beth Tinker, her brother John and their friend Chris Eckhardt first donned black armbands to protest the Vietnam war—an act that brought about one of the most important SCOTUS rulings on student free speech in history. Mary Beth Tinker, the case’s youngest protagonist, and Frank LoMonte, Executive Director of the SPLC, will offer their unique perspectives and expertise in a dynamic conversation about the importance of this case to students today. Students and advisers alike will have the rare privilege to interact with both and learn from those who have been on the front lines of free speech advocacy.

Mary Beth Tinker
Frank LoMonte, Student Press Law Center

Thursday, October 27

Session name: The Great 2016 First Amendment Trivia Challenge

Time: 10-10:50 a.m.

Room: Greenbriar

Session description: Who was SCOTUS Chief Justice when the court ruled on Tinker v. Des Moines Independent School District? Which Senator refused to hold hearings on President Barack Obama’s most recent nominee to the SCOTUS? Which came first, the Hazelwood or Hosty decision? Think you know your First Amendment trivia? Come show off your 1A muscles and win awesome First Amendment-related prizes at this lively, interactive session.

Andrea Frantz, SCJ Presdient, Buena Vista University

Thursday, October 27

Session name: Privately Challenged: Private Universities and the First Amendment

Time: 12:30 – 1:20 p.m.

Room: Greenbriar

Session description: The guarantees of the First Amendment have long been the safety net for student media leaders who engage in tough, unpopular investigative work. But private universities don’t enjoy the same guarantees and sometimes face significant challenges when taking on in-depth, investigative work. This session will highlight student media initiatives at several private institutions that walked the tightrope without the safety net. Attendees will leave the session with strategies for how to use the 1A even when its power seems to be limited to our public brethren up the street.

Andrea Frantz, SCJ President, Buena Vista University
Lindsey Wotanis, SCJ VP for Communication, Marywood University

Saturday, October 29

Session name: ’Pay No Attention to that Adviser Behind the Curtain’: How Media Advisers Manage 1A Issues Before Tenure

Time: 10-10:50 a.m.

Room: Greenbriar

Session description: One of the most effective methods of silencing student media is to sanction or threaten the faculty adviser with removal. This session will address what pre-tenured faculty advisers face through real-world stories and offer problem solving strategies and resources.

Andrea Frantz, SCJ President, Buena Vista University
Lindsey Wotanis, SCJ VP for Communication, Marywood University


For more information about booking your flights and hotels, visit

For Chapters bringing at least 2 delegates, the SCJ National Office will reimburse your school for one night/one room in the hotel and travel stipends may be available. For more information, contact Dr. Sally Renaud, Executive Director at

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