J-Day 2017 Registration Now Open

J-Day 2017, presented by the Maryland-DC Scholastic Press Association and hosted by the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, will be held at the University of Maryland on Friday, October 27. We’re planning a great day of journalism education on the Maryland campus and look forward to meeting you and your students there.

Registration is now open and online. You can sign up on our Registration Page. You should find everything you’ll need to plan your field trip to J-Day on our J-Day informational pages, including information on traveling to UMD, parking, the schedule, lunch plans, speakers, tours and more.

For those of you who’ve attended the event in the past, the day will proceed much as it did last year. The only major change will be that we will hold the Opening Ceremony with the keynote speaker in the campus’ Memorial Chapel instead of in the Stamp Student Union as in past years. We have scheduled a terrific line-up of speakers and presenters which you can find on the Speakers, Presenters and Panels page.

If you encounter any difficulties with the website, or any difficulty registering, please email MDCSPA President Gary Clites immediately at gclites@comcast.net and we’ll work to solve any problems. If you need any additional information to plan your field trip to J-Day, or if you need any additional information, please feel free to contact Gary.

J-Day 2017 will be another great educational opportunity to develop your students’ interest in and knowledge of the world of scholastic and professional journalism. Space is limited. We encourage you to register early to guarantee space for your students at the event.

J-Day 2016 Planned for Friday, October 28

JDay WelcomeTeachers and Students – Save the date! Fall J-Day at the University of Maryland, co-sponsored by the Maryland-DC Scholastic Press Association and the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, is scheduled for Friday, October 28.

Make plans now to bring your students to the campus of the University of Maryland for a full day of journalism education and fun. There will be some changes this year – an earlier schedule for those schools that need to leave earlier – and plans to locate sessions more centrally near the Knight Center.

Stay tuned for more information. Registration will open early in September and we will get you more information as soon as plans are solidified.

New Voices Maryland Passes the Legislature

NewVoicesMarylandLogoOn Saturday, April 9, The New Voices Maryland Act, designed to reasonably protect the First Amendment rights of high school and college students in Maryland, won final passage with amendments in the Maryland State Senate. This was the last hurdle to passing the bill out of the state legislature. The act now goes to Governor Hogan for his signature.

This passage is the culmination of years of effort to get the legislation before the House and Senate, and a solid year of work by dedicated individuals to find sponsors, create the bill, and shepherd it through the statehouse including representatives from the Student Press Law Center, The Maryland-Delaware-DC Press Association, and the Maryland-DC Scholastic Press Association.

The bill will:
• Protect the First Amendment Rights of Students to report without fear of censorship on their schools and communities.
• Protect students from retaliation for their work as journalists.
• Protect journalism teachers for retaliation over the journalism their students produce.
• Protects student journalists from prior restraint.

School administrators can still prevent the distribution of material that:
• Is libelous or slanderous
• Constitutes an invasion of privacy
• Violates state or federal law
• Incites students to commit an unlawful act
• Incites students to violate county school board policy
• Incites students to materially disrupt the orderly operation of the school
• Is vulgar, lewd, obscene, harassing, threatening or intimidating.

If you support this bill, consider contacting Governor Hogan using one of these methods

  • Mail:
    100 State Circle
    Annapolis, Maryland
  • Phone:
    MD Relay 1-800-735-2258
  • Email Form:
    Click Here

Plans for J-Day

Knight Hall

Knight Hall

As everyone knows, we at the MDCSPA received far greater response to our J-Day at the University of Maryland event than we expected. We anticipated a high of 175 registrants, but received requests to bring many more than twice that number. We worked with the university to accommodate as many of those attendees as possible. While we couldn’t register everyone who wanted to come, we were able to expand the event to around 300. We sincerely apologize to those advisers who put their groups on the wait list, but who did not get in. Please come back again next year.

Adjusting numbers upward, some changes had to be made. Specifically, we will now principally use four buildings on the campus for our sessions: The Stamp Student Union, Knight Hall (home to the College of Journalism), the Tawes Fine Arts Building, and the Mathematics Building. Knight and Tawes are side by side on Union Drive off of the top of Campus Drive. Stamp is about halfway down Campus Drive, and Math is at the bottom of Campus Drive just below the “M”. Anyone who is familiar with the campus can probably picture this, but if you can’t, visit the campus map at this link to see the relationship between the buildings: http://maps.umd.edu/map/ .
We have adjusted available travel times to make the walk between buildings doable, and the feeling of some teachers was that the distance will let students experience traveling from class to class around a large college campus. If, however, registered participants are concerned about your students attending sessions in distant locations, we are offering all groups the opportunity to bring one additional chaperone to the event at no charge. Please just send the person’s name to me within the next week so that I can register them. Personally, I can tell you that I have taken large groups to the CSPA Convention at Columbia in New York many times where sessions are held in buildings even further apart, and my students have never had any problem.
Late registrants to J-Day were unable to register for lunchtime tours. In lieu of that, we have added a Swap Shop to be held in the Stamp Student Union near the Food Court from 12:20–1 p.m. Bring copies of your staff’s newspaper, magazine or yearbook to the shop to share with other staffs (yearbooks will, of course, be returned) and help your students gain great new ideas by networking with students from other schools. The Swap Shop is also available to those schools that registered for tours if they’d rather send some students there. Talk to your students about the option.
I will be sending everyone a detailed email regarding specific plans for the entire event next week – including a digital version of the program so that you can pre-plan with your kids what to do at J-Day.
I look forward to seeing everyone on campus on November 6.
–Gary Clites
president, The Maryland-D.C. Scholastic Press Association

J-Day Registrations On Hold

Interest in the Maryland-D.C. Scholastic Press Association’s J-Day at the University of Maryland event hosted by the Philip Merrill College of Journalism has far exceeded our expectations.

On Wednesday, September 30, MDCSPA passed the number of registrations we can currently accomodate for J-Day. We were forced to suspend the registration form on our website. We will be working with the College of Journalism and the university over the coming days to try to add sessions to the event and to open up additional slots for students to attend the event.

For the time being, if you would like to bring students to the event, please send an email to that effect to organization President Gary Clites at gclites@comcast.net. Include your name, the name of your school, and the number of students you would like to register. If we can open up additional registration slots for the event, we will let as many of you as we can know that space for your students is available.

We appreciate your patience in this matter and hope that you understand that the amount of space available for this event is not entirely within the control of MDCSPA. We sincerely hope that we will be able to expand the event, and we promise that we are working to do so.

J-Day Registration Now Open

knight-hall2-croppedRegistration is now open for J-Day at the University of Maryland on November 6. Sponsored by the Maryland-D.C. Scholastic Press Association and hosted by the Philip Merrill College of Journalism, J-Day offers teachers and students an immersive day of journalism experiences on the Maryland campus.

For a detailed description of the day, click here. Detailed pages on the information you need to plan your field trip to the Merrill College of Journalism are available under the J-Day 2015 tab on the menu above or by clicking here.

The early registration cost for the event is $12 per participant until October 2. Late registration is available October 3-16 for $15. To register, fill out our online form by clicking here. Space is limited to only 175 participants. Register now to make sure your space is saved.

We look forward to seeing the best young journalists in the area on the Maryland campus on November 6.

Come to J-Day at The University of Maryland on November 6

Knight Hall, the home of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at Maryland.

Knight Hall, the home of the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at Maryland.

The MDCSPA will hold J-Day hosted by the Philip Merrill College of Journalism at the University of Maryland on Friday, November 6. Students and teachers are invited to the campus for a day of journalism education and networking.

The day will start with a panel of young professionals in the field who will talk about starting careers in the field of journalism in the 21st Century. Three concurrent sessions led by professional journalists and educators will follow during which you and your students can choose from sessions on yearbook, print, online and social media journalism, and more.

During lunch (not included – students can eat at the Stamp Student Union food court), students and advisers can take a tour of the Merrill College of Journalism, the Diamondback student newspaper and the WMUC student radio station, or the Capital News Service broadcast facility. Advisers will have a chance to meet to network and discuss press freedom in Maryland and D.C. with Student Press Law Center Executive Director Frank LoMonte during one of the concurrent sessions.

Presenters from The Philip Merrill College of Journalism, The Baltimore Sun, Big Ten Network, CNN, Education Week, McClatchy News Service, News Channel 8, The Student Press Law Center, Terp Magazine, and WMUC Sports will be among the speakers.

Registration information for the event will be released in late August. Check back here or watch your school mail for details. Space at the event is limited, so sign up early.