2020 SPJ R1C Panels

Learn about our speakers and panels for the 2020 SPJ Region 1 Conference on March 20-21, 2020 at Hofstra University!


Panel: How to Get a Job in Journalism 

Description: Learn the ins and outs of what prospective employers want in candidates and what it will take to land the internship or job you want. Session is in two parts to cover a wide range of topics and be of extra help to all the college students in attendance.

Panel: Podcasts: Amplifying Storytelling

Description: This audio/visual presentation will cover the growing popularity and power of podcasting as a meaningful vehicle for journalism in the public good. The team behind award-winning social justice podcast News Beat will outline the basics of this ever-expanding medium, while sharing tips and anecdotes of their transformation from print alt weekly journos to podcasters, melding hard-hitting journalism with original hip hop to shine a light on lesser-known issues and hopefully spark change. Attendees can expect to hear clips from several episodes, learn plenty about the podcasting process and its boundless applications to great storytelling.

Panel: Covering Cannabis

Description: Learn more about the growing and increasingly interesting coverage area of cannabis.

Panel: Ethics of Covering the 2020 Campaign

Description: This year will likely see particularly nasty campaigns aimed at energizing a highly polarized electorate. Former National Journalism Ethics Committee Chair Kevin Smith and former committee member Irwin Gratz will lead a discussion of how we should  help the public recognize spin, call out errors of fact,  and avoid false equivalences while preserving fairness in reporting.   And how the  SPJ Code of Ethics guides us.

Panel: Gangs

Description: TBD

Panel: Hot Law

  • Day: Friday
  • Room: 141
  • Time: 4:00 – 5:15
  • Moderator/Speaker: Roy Gutterman

Description: This panel of legal experts will cover some hot topics in the law that journalists face today.  From weaponized defamation actions to excluding reporters from government meetings and places, this panel will cover cutting edge topics and the current state of the First Amendment.

Panel: Covering the climate crisis from A to Z

Description: With human-caused carbon dioxide levels expected to rise in the coming three decades — and along with them, the Earth’s temperature — the climate crisis is among the most critical issues that journalists can — and should — be covering. Where do they begin reporting on an issue of global proportions spanning generations? How do they catch the attention of an often disinterested public? And how do they convey the severity of the crisis without unnecessarily panicking their audiences when they are willing to listen? This panel will explore these issues and more.

Panel: FOI – A good source for great stories

  • Day: Friday
  • Room: 143
  • Time: 4:00 – 5:15
  • Moderator: Carolyn James
  • Speakers: CarolAnn Habeeb

Description: Reporters and editors talk about their experiences in working with Freedom of Information requests and how it helps with telling more detailed stories, or, in some cases, helps tell the real and whole story.

Resume Editing

  • Day: Friday
  • Room: 145
  • Time: 4:00 – 5:15
  • Host: Bill Bleyer

Description: Students should bring their resume and cover letters to have edited by the pros.

Panel: Breaking into Freelancing

Description: Learn how to be a part-time or full-time freelancer with details on finding markets, writing queries and more.

Panel: Sports of Our Times

Description: A look at how sports stories are being told today. Is it game stories? Is it long form? Is it first person? Is it simply social? What are consumers and sports fans gravitating towards reading and viewing in this whirlwind media cycle.

Panel: Entrepreneurial Journalists: Starting from Scratch

Description: A growing number of journalists are wading into new territory by putting on entrepreneurial hats as traditional media jobs are cut. Meet a few online journalism pioneers, who will discuss the challenges and excitement of operating as their own bosses while also delivering valuable journalism. 

Panel: Moving from Daily Journalism to Writing Books

Description: Learn how to make the transition from writing articles to writing books. Details on finding an agent, finding a topic, royalties, advances, etc.

Panel: Covering Immigration in the 2020 Election

Description: Immigration will, no doubt, play an outsized role in the 2020 presidential election. What issues should journalists focus on? What of DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)? What of TPS (Temporary Protected Status)? And what of the wall? Finally, how can journalists be fair and balanced while following a SPJ Code of Ethics that requires journalists to hold those in power accountable and give “a voice to the voiceless?”

Panel: Investigation: Turning Local Stories into Blockbusters

Description: TBD

Panel: Moving from Daily Journalism to Writing Books

Description: Learn how to make the transition from writing articles to writing books. Details on finding an agent, finding a topic, royalties, advances etc.

Panel: Covering the White House

Description: An inside look at covering the White House from the perspective of reporters who bring the nation some of the most important news each day.

Panel: Leadership

Description: The magic of phone calls.  How to pay for programs.  Join past national SPJ President Irwin Gratz and Region1 Coordinator Jane Primerano for tips on making your chapter stronger.  And don’t forget to bring your own success stories to share.

Panel: Long Island Divided: Behind the Scenes of a Local Investigation with National Impact

  • Day: Saturday
  • Room: Theater
  • Time: 3:30 p.m. to 4:45 p.m.
  • Moderators/Speakers: Keith Herbert

Description: TBD