SPJ Region 3 Conference this week in Birmingham

The Society of Professional Journalists’ Region 3 Conference will be held April 1-2, 2011 in Birmingham, Ala.

We’ll start the conference with the Mark of Excellence Award luncheon at the Highland Conference Center, (2012 Magnolia Ave, Birmingham, AL 35205-2892, (205) 939-4599)

The luncheon will start at 1 p.m. We’ll have two options for breakout sessions from 3:30 to 5 p.m. at the conference center. One of those sessions will be with Kristen Heptinstall of al.com. She’ll be discussing social media, community engagement (getting journos to interact directly with readers through social and commenting), and the future of news in the social sphere.

On Saturday we’ll be at the University of Alabama, Birmingham campus and will have breakout sessions all day.

Some of those sessions are:

  • Officials Stonewalling With FERPA? Learn what the rules are with the federal privacy law that university officials like to use to keep every piece of paper with a student’s name on it secret. When can they do that and when can they not? Carolyn S. Carlson, assistant professor of communication at Kennesaw State (Ga.) University and chairman of the FERPA subcommittee of the SPJ Freedom of Information Committee will lead the session.
  • There will be a panel discussion on social media ethics, featuring Clay Duda, a social media professional from Atlanta and Chris Roberts, professor of journalism at The University of Alabama.
  • Bob Corley will be discussing independent publications and how to thrive in a tough market.

There will be many more sessions and the full schedule will be released soon. We’ll have sessions on social media, political reporting, sports journalism, and a special panel discussion with recent graduates on landing that first job out of college. There will also be plenty of opportunities for networking.

The conference hotel is the Hotel Highland (1023 20th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35205, (205) 933-9555). Let them know you’re attending the SPJ Region 3 conference and you’ll get the $99 rate. Register for the conference itself via Eventbrite.

More details are coming soon so check back regularly for the program schedule and more details.

Feel free to contact Jenn Rowell with any questions at rowell83@gmail.com

Hope to see you there!

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