On July 19, 2013, Murphy Hall welcomed 40 high school journalism students and 8 high school journalism advisers as part of the National Scholastic Press Association's (NSPA) Summer High School Journalism Workshops. The workshops run for three days.
The day began with a keynote from Star Tribune reporter and author Neal Justin, who spoke about the importance of journalists and how journalism skills can be transferrable through many career paths. He also talked about not taking advantage of some of the perks of the job -- such as a press pass -- and about being a responsible journalist.
After the keynote, students broke up into focus area groups that are intended to help high school journalism students grow skill sets and network. Throughout the three-day workshop, students choose a focus area in which to concentrate: editorial leadership, journalistic writing, InDesign and website management.
"It's our job to take over next year, so we want to be as prepared as possible," said Kristi DeLeo of Roseville Area High School who will serve as co-editor of its yearbook with Becca Ohm. Both were taking the InDesign and Illustrator Focus Class. "We want to build on these skills and be able to share this knowledge of our staff," said Ohm.
The workshop also includes a session for advisers to help them gain strategies for managing student media and staff. We kind of live in our own little bubble and I wanted to hear ideas from other advisers," said Virginia Sheridan, a yearbook adviser at Singapore American School. "I've heard some interesting ideas about how to run the staff and I'm finding that all of us advisers have so many connections."
NSPA membership spans the globe and oftentimes that brings international visitors to the workshops, such as Taylor Haas of the Singapore American School. Haas is attending the Editorial Leadership Focus Class because she'll serve as editor-in-chief of the school's yearbook. "I want to get perspective from other students and learn about facilitating a staff," Haas said. "I need to be the leader and want to do well."
For some, it's their first time on the University of Minnesota campus. "The campus is so beautiful," said Ohm. "I love that it's in the city and stores and restaurants are within walking distance."
NSPA is a nonprofit membership organization exclusively for high school and other secondary school publications. The Associated Collegiate Press is a division of NSPA and will hold its workshop for college journalists at the University of Minnesota on July 26, 2013. NSPA is headquartered at the University of Minnesota. Three faculty members from the School of Journalism & Mass Communication serve on its board, including director Albert Tims.