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Students Travel To National Convention


Guest speaker Vladim Lavrusik, spoke about the new changes made to the security of Facebook. Other journalism advisors from around the nation were present to teach journalism skills to the students who attended the convention.

By Nathan Britt


On November 17-20, a group of journalism students traveled to Minneapolis, MN to share ideas with other students from across the nation at the JEA/NSPA national fall conference.  They convened at the Minneapolis Convention Center to take seminars, attend a dance, and an expo.The students attended seminars on sports journalism, plagiarism, and interviewing.  These classes were taught by advisers and journalists from all over the United States.  There was even a presentation given by the head of journalism at Facebook, Vladim Lavrusik.  He discussed the use of Facebook as a journalism tool and the upcoming changes to the site.Lavrusik explained the new Facebook timeline and its perks from the scope of journalism.  He also discussed the differences between Facebook and twitter and the new security system in place.  This system prevents the subscribe feature from being applied to minors.

His main focus was how the new changes in Facebook will impact the world of news reporting and its accessibility.  Hundreds of students were there to hear his pitch.

The Royal News staff had the opportunity to be critiqued by college professors from Ball State University at the expo.  The expo was attended by numerous prominent colleges such as Louisiana State University, The University of South Carolina, and Kansas University.  These institutions were there to show off their journalism departments to prospective students and advise the programs that attended.

Yearbook companies such as Jostens were there to display their new products to the photo journalism students.  They gave out tons of free material to the attendees.  They even had some interactive games set up to educate the students.

On the second day of the conference, after the seminars, the Convention Center hosted a dance for the students in one of the ballrooms.

“It was fun because I got to stay with my friends and laugh at all the weird things people were doing,” senior yearbook editor Carrie Young said.

The students also had the chance to do some sightseeing in the Twin Cities.  They were able to check out the downtown area, visit the Mall of America, and attend a Minnesota Vikings football game.  They even had the privilege to see the first snow of the year for Minneapolis, which is part of the coldest region in the nation.

Despite the tiresome travel, cumbersome baggage, and chilly weather, the staff really enjoyed the trip.

“It was a great overall learning experience; it was definitely a lot of fun” senior TRN writer Conner Stevenson said.

The staff now looks forward to the upcoming CSPA Conference in New York on March 14-16 at Columbia University.



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  • M

    Melissa TomlinJan 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    I thought that this article was good. it showed that the journalism in the school takes steps to improve. This is also a very informative article allowing the students to know what is going on behind the scenes of certain things in their high school.

  • F

    Faven ButlerJan 1, 2012 at 6:06 pm

    Although the article may only appeal to a select group of people, it fitted the News category well. News does not always have to be interesting or exciting; sometimes it is simply “news”. The writer provided all aspects of the trip, answering who, what, when, why, and how. Also, Facebook is a very popular aspect of teenagers’ lives today which is why I believe that may have been an appealing factor to more readers.

  • M

    Michaela HarrisonJan 1, 2012 at 3:11 pm

    This article great insight into the journalism program of Prince George High. It showed how the conference helped the students improve their journalism technique, but also have a good time. It encourages students to want to be a part of TRN so they can have some of the same experiences.

  • J

    Jessica TaylorJan 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    This article was very informative, but a bit on the boring side. I’m sure it was not as boring for people reading it who actually went on the trip because they can be like “Oh, I remember that!” For others, however, it just seemed to drag on and did not go into detail on the things that could be considered more interesting to them.

  • N

    Nathan BrittDec 29, 2011 at 3:08 pm

    Thank you for the input gentlemen. Remember Marshall, i’m writing to a wide range of readers. The sentences need to be short and simple so that students of every reading level can read it easily. I’m reporting, not writing a novel or detailing quantum I know you enjoy.

  • P

    Parth PatelDec 29, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    This article gives a good view of what happened at the conference. I would have like to see what the students had learned at the conference and more details about the traveling around Minnesota.

  • J

    Jordan ThompsonDec 27, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    This article was well-written, however it did not provide enough insight about the experience for our school’s journalism teams. It discussed more about the changes that major social network site Facebook is currently undergoing. I would have liked to have read more about the experience our students had, rather than the speech that Vladim Lavrusik gave about Facebook. Although the writer briefly stated the itinerary for our journalism students, he did not discuss the experience and the feedback he gained while sitting inside of the various clasrooms. However, I did find it interesting to read about the colleges that were actually at the conference and the offers they had for the students. As a yearbookie, the article persuaded me to go on the Minneapolis trip myself.

  • M

    Marshall DunnDec 14, 2011 at 4:52 pm

    Though it is exciting that the students went to a journalism conference, I think that the article itself was boring to read. The article contained an overabundance of short simple sentences, which, in my opinion, made the article sound mundane.

  • C

    Caleb JohnsonDec 12, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    The article provided a good overview of the events of the conference. I would have liked for there to have been more information about the classes and the traveling itself so readers could have a better visual of the trip. I also would have liked to have seen more about how the conference impacted our school’s news team. Did it bring you closer and motivate you to do a better job? Did you take anything away besides the feeling of “the staff now looks forward to the upcoming CSPA Conference”? Overall, a good article and well done Nathan.