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Reflecting on the ACP Midwinter National College Journalism Convention

This year, our executive board got the chance to attend the 2018 Associated Collegiate Press Midwinter National College Journalism Convention held in Long Beach, California. We attended sessions centering on creativity, self-expression, and story structuring, among other things. In addition to attending numerous sessions, the executive board, including myself, got the chance to present a session.

Our session, titled, “Tell TMZ You’re Leaving the House Today: How to Brand Yourself Through Online Journalism and Communication,” centered on the importance of establishing one’s self online. Whether we are conscious of it or not, superficial elements of our online presence – from the pictures we post to the grammatical rules we follow – create an image of the brand we are trying to sell online. Lucky for us, a lot of our attendees resonated with our message. Many who were present worked for publications at their respective colleges and agreed that these qualities can play a major role in molding your online image – whether individually or as a group.

While teaching a session of our own was without question the most memorable part of our trip, there were several speakers hailing from professional publications such as the Los Angeles Times, who provided thought-provoking, insightful sessions, as well. A favorite of mine was a session taught by Los Angeles Times writing coach, Steve Padilla. Padilla gave a candid, matter-of-fact presentation where he laid out the writing tips that have helped him advance his own writing and the writing of his tutees. He discussed the different messages certain phrasing and sentence structures evoke; such as where the emphasis lies in a sentence when passive voice is utilized rather than active.

Padilla was just one of many journalism professionals who taught a session at the convention. What I came to realize by the conclusion of the convention, however, was that any new insight- whether it be from a professional in the field or a Her Campus executive board- is beneficial in expanding one’s writing skill set. I left the conference feeling confident in my abilities as a writer while simultaneously being open to any new tips or tricks that may come my way that will aid in bettering my writing skill set.

Hi! I'm Kate, and I'm a junior at New York University majoring in English.
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