Student Media Plans National Convention

Posted On October 4, 2016
Categories Uncategorized

When Bryce McNeil, assistant director for Student Media, agreed to be the programming chair for CMAATL16, the national College Media Association (CMA) convention held from October 26-30, 2016, he had some idea what he would need to do.

McNeil previously programmed Student Media’s Modern Media Conference. He was also president of the 2015 Southeast Journalism Conference (SEJC) at Georgia State University.

However, CMAATL16 is more than three times the size of SEJC, with an anticipated attendance of more than 1,000 students and advisers from all over the country. The lineup for the event at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta includes speakers from CNN, all four of Atlanta’s network television affiliates, public radio, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and more. It is also expands beyond journalism to include several sessions on literature and a keynote on the Georgia film industry featuring Tom Luse (executive producer of AMC’s “The Walking Dead”) and Randy Havens (best known for his role as Mr. Clarke on Netflix’s “Stranger Things”).

McNeil has also enlisted several Student Media alumni, including former Signal editors-in-chief Sheena Roetman, Sabastian Wee and Anna Yang. McNeil even recruited one of the over 50 current Georgia State University students attending to speak. Tony Betton, Jr., an active Atlanta Press Club member, will conduct a session on networking.

Perimeter College Student Media adviser Alice Murray has helped extensively with the programming. A retired newspaper professional with more than 25 years of experience at the Atlanta Journal Constitution, she called on friends and former co-workers both at the newspaper and in public relations and nonprofit work.

Her contacts included several speakers that will be leading keynote sessions, including Hank Klibanoff, M. Alexis Scott and Jen Christensen. The keynotes will address important topics for young journalists today, including the Black Lives Matter movement, the Orlando shootings and the world of international journalism.

She also reached out to numerous well-known media professionals including Maria Saporta, Keith Herndon, Faith Peppers, Teresa Weaver and Soyia Ellison. She recruited Tim Merritt from the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning to lead training sessions on how to use key software programs used by media professionals and Gregg Stickels of CNN, who will lead a session on Adobe Premiere Pro, the industry standard video editing software.

The College Media Association is a nonprofit organization serving student media professionals, staff and programs with education, research and resources. Its fall convention rotates from city to city, with its spring convention held annually in New York City.

The full schedule for CMAATL16 can be found on the conference website.