May 2015: Top reasons to attend CAMP

This month I attended Georgetown’s commencement and had the honor of hooding our journalism graduate students. It didn’t take long. Not many journalism degrees were handed out in comparison with degrees in public relations, sports management, real estate and other fields where job prospects are more secure.

That’s why I am so impressed with the passion and dedication of those students who choose to follow careers in journalism. And I was pleased to see several JAWS members among this year’s grads (shout out to Brittany Bremer, Heather Curtis and Julie Gilkison. Also Nicole Lewis, in absentia).

It is my hope that the JAWS network will be there for them and for all of us at every stage in our careers to provide support, resources and perhaps most importantly friendship. It’s the friendships we develop in newsrooms and through our JAWS networks that help us celebrate the highs when we produce great work, get promotions and new gigs. And these are the friends that help us get through the layoffs, the spiked stories and the newsroom dramas. We’ve celebrated steps big and small, and we hope to commemorate 30 years of JAWS history with a modest cookbook – a collection of your stories and recipes. Consider it a keepsake, a smorgasbord of inspiration, maybe even a fundraising tool.

There’s no better place to enjoy longtime friends and make new ones than CAMP. Start planning now to join JAWS in Montana. And start lobbying now to get your employer to help cover costs. After all, you’re journalists. You are masters of the art of persuasion. Turn those powers on your newsroom supervisor. JAWS Development Director Kat Rowlands has compiled talking points to help both full-time reporters and independent journalists hone their pitches for CAMP. Fewer outlets cover costs than in decades past, but you don’t know until you ask. If you successfully persuaded your employer to help pay for CAMP, please share any additional tips.

Here’s another great reason to come to CAMP – to meet the awesome JAWS staff.
Roxanne Foster, our new operations director. Many of you already met her at La Quinta last year or at another CAMP in 2012 or 2013, or you’ve received one of her warm welcoming notes to new members, or you’ve been in touch with her more recently for help. Check out her weekly office hours and take a moment to call and introduce yourself.
Kat Rowlands, our development director who works tirelessly to seek support for JAWS.
Connie Ho, our web manager who pulls together this newsletter each month along with keeping updated and fresh and who helps to solve and anticipate all our online needs.
Ankita Rao, social media manager who is working with the Communications Committee (thanks Stacy-Marie Ishmael and others) to engage JAWS strategically in the wider world.

Linda Kramer Jenning