A Magazine by the Society of Professional Journalists

Chapter News

By Quill

Will Write For Food 2014

Now in its sixth year, SPJ’s annual Will Write For Food program brought 21 college journalists to the Homeless Voice shelter near Fort Lauderdale, Fla. Over Labor Day weekend, they took over the nation’s second-largest homeless newspaper and completed a 28-page print edition and website.

Students came from 14 states — including Alaska — and worked on a tight deadline of 36 hours before flying home.

“This program imposed grit on me — it was a sink-or-swim experience,” said Celene Arvizu, a freshman at the University of Arizona who not only wrote a story but hand-painted illustrations for it. “In this career field, we oftentimes find ourselves drawing a line between personal impact and work in order to produce content. Nevertheless, we experienced things that imprinted a new-found perspective of humanity and the determination to not only survive, but to live.”

Applications are already being accepted for WWFF15 next Labor Day weekend. Program alumni will choose 2015 participants. Apply at journo terrorist.com/homeless or email Region 3 director Michael Koretzky at michael@koretzky.com.

Learning to Follow the Money

Ahead of election season, the Rio Grande Pro chapter sponsored a workshop focused on covering money in politics Aug. 2 in Albuquerque, N.M.

About 50 people attended, including journalists from 14 different print, online, radio, and television outlets.

The event came together thanks to a friendship forged between chapter president Laura Paskus and Eve Byron during a 2013 Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources (IJNR) fellowship. A former reporter, Byron now works for the National Institute on Money in State Politics. In August she and the institute’s research director Pete Quist went to Albuquerque to give a one-day training to New Mexico journalists. To broaden SPJ’s reach and help host the event, the chapter partnered with the non-profit New Mexico Foundation on Open Government.

The chapter hired a videographer to record the event, livestream it, and edit for later viewing online. For more information, see the chapter website..