We’re excited to have some of the best and brightest minds in North American media join us at NASH76 MASH UP, many of whom were once student journalists themselves. We’ll be adding to the list as time goes on, so be sure to check back for updates.

NOTE:  This page will be regularly updated with session descriptions and the names of additional speakers. (Last update: Dec. 18, 2013)


Robyn Doolittle, The Toronto Star (Wednesday, Jan. 8)
Robyn Doolittle is a city hall reporter at the Toronto Star, Canada’s largest newspaper. Doolittle has broken some of the most talked about stories in Toronto over the last few years, including a year-and-a-long investigation into the Mayor of Toronto’s substance abuse issues has garnered international attention. Doolittle is now writing her first book, Crazy Town: The Rob Ford Story. 

Mark Coatney, Al Jazeera America (Thursday, Jan. 9)
Mark Coatney is Senior Vice President, Digital for Al Jazeera America. He has previously been the media director for Tumblr, a Senior Editor for Newsweek.com, and a writer and editor for Time magazine and its website, Time.com. He’s a graduate of the University of Kansas, and does indeed believe that there’s no place like home.

Aliya-Jasmine Sovani, MTV Canada (Friday, Jan. 10)
Aliya-Jasmine Sovani is a host & segment producer for MTV (Canada) on the popular new show Play with AJ, and the original ‘1 girl’ on the hit show, 1 Girl 5 Gays (“1g5g”), on Logo and MTV (Canada).  In addition to her hosting duties on the rejuvenated and reenergized weekly series MTV News, MTV Live, and MTV2, she is the producer for many social issue segments on the shows.

Ezra Levant, Sun Media (Saturday, Jan. 11)
Ezra Levant is a TV anchor, newspaper columnist, author and general trouble-maker. As Canada’s best-known Conservative pundit, Ezra Levant provokes debate wherever he appears. To the relief of his wife, Levant finally got a real job this spring, when he joined the new Sun TV all-news channel as the host of the always-controversial daily news program The Source.

Feature Presentation Speakers:

Don Iveson, Mayor of Edmonton

Don Iveson was elected Edmonton’s 35th mayor in the fall of 2013. He was first elected to City Council in 2007, and served two terms as Councillor for southwest Edmonton. Iveson graduated from the University of Alberta, during which time he worked as The Gateway’s managing editor. He then served as CUP president in 2001. In 2002, Iveson returned to The Gateway and became its business manager. Over the next three years, he developed the organization’s commercial operations, making it the most financially successful campus newspaper in the country. Mayor Iveson now envisions Edmonton as a globally competitive city, ardently supporting the city’s entrepreneurial culture.

Margo Goodhand, Edmonton Journal 

Margo Goodhand is the Editor-in-Chief of the Edmonton Journal, former editor of the Winnipeg Free Press, a member of the National Newspaper Board of Governors, and a recovering author. She recently spent 11 months researching and writing a history of the first five women’s shelters in Canada. A distinguished alumni of the University of Winnipeg, she is one of Langara College j-school’s  most famous dropouts, quitting the program on a spring internship to take a job. She may advise you to stay in school, but don’t listen to her.



What I Wish They Taught Me in Journalism School (Josh O’Kane)

Do you know how to calculate percentage change? Your answer could be the deciding factor in getting a job. Josh O’Kane, who writes business and personal finance stories for The Globe and Mail, will go through some basics of business reporting and other things he didn’t learn in journalism school, including how to make your job or internship application stand out out.

Josh O’Kane writes about business & personal finance for The Globe and Mail. He’s a Brunswickan alumni and former CUP chair/national bureau chief.

The Game of Life (Chris Jones)

Everything I needed to know about how to succeed in my working life, I learned from game shows. All of our questions about perception, strategy, self-improvement, and how to effectively pass a snow day—the answers have been waiting for us in The Price is Right, Wheel of Fortune, Jeopardy!, and my personal favourite, Golden Balls. We’ll learn through the eyes and minds of some all-time contestants, men and women who cracked life’s code and won cash, prizes, and most important, my affection. This won’t be nearly as pathetic as it sounds. I hope.

Chris Jones is a Writer at Large for Esquire and a columnist for ESPN The Magazine. He’s in the middle of a pretty severe midlife crisis.

Bloody Shoes & Broken Fingers (Jana G. Pruden)

From grieving families to angry killers, veteran reporter and true crime author Jana G. Pruden goes beyond the police tape to explore the art and craft of reporting on crime, tragedy and disaster.

Jana G. Pruden is a senior reporter who has covered some of Canada’s biggest crime stories. She is now the crime bureau chief at the Edmonton Journal.

Pitch Perfect (Omar Mouallem)

It may sound simple, but there are numerous unwritten rules to the magazine query. Know the audience and study the “book” are just a few, but there’s also the pressing question of how to get your foot in the door and structure your pitches. Join Omar Mouallem, an experienced magazine writer and editor, for a seminar that will get you one step closer to writing for your favourite magazines.

Omar Mouallem a National Magazine Awards nominated writer who has contributed to the Globe and Mail, The Walrus and Alberta Views

The changing face of mainstream sports journalism: Did Jason Botchford break any rules in the wild west of digital sports coverage? (Evan Daum)

What does Vancouver Province sports writer Jason Botchford, San Jose Shark Joe Thornton and a hypothetical X-rated goal celebration have to do with the changing face of mainstream sports journalism? A whole lot more than you’d think. Using the Botchford-Thornton example, which generated plenty of buzz back in October, University of Alberta sport management master’s student and former Edmonton Journal sports reporter Evan Daum will explore how mainstream sports journalists are adapting to a media landscape increasingly dominated by page views and cross-promotion. Drawing on research from his master’s thesis, which aims to uncover how sports journalists have adapted to the pressures of a crumbling print newspaper industry, the presentation will explore how Botchford and other sport journalists are pushing the envelope to keep themselves and their newspapers relevant in the digital age.

Evan Daum is a recovering sports reporter with the Edmonton Journal, who is now a Sport Management master’s student at the U of A researching sports journalism.

Interviewing 101 (Charles Rusnell & Jennie Russell)

Interviewing is the most important basic skill for journalists, but often the one most neglected. The seminar teaches the methods and strategies of successful interviewing, and getting interviews. It is guaranteed to make reporters faster, more efficient and accurate, and to produce stories that are more focused with stronger reporting and editing.

Charles Rusnell and Jennie Russell are the reporters and producers behind CBC Investigates, the award-winning investigative unit for CBC in Alberta.

Applying Investigative Organizational Methods (Charles Rusnell & Jennie Russell)

It is not by chance that some journalists are much better than others. All the best, most productive journalists employ a method for organizing their work. This seminar teaches the basic method employed by many of the top investigative units in the world. And it is method easily applied to daily reporting.

Charles Rusnell and Jennie Russell are the reporters and producers behind CBC Investigates, the award-winning investigative unit for CBC in Alberta.

Don’t give up on a day job (Alix Kemp)

You’re on your way into an industry in the midst of an identity crisis, and you’d really like to land a steady job that will let you pay your rent, buy beer and maybe even get groceries occasionally. Alix Kemp, a recent Gateway grad, a business journalist and an assistant editor at Alberta Venture magazine, dishes on getting a “real job” in journalism.

Alix Kemp is an assistant editor at Alberta Venture magazine and is likely the most heavily tattooed business journalist in Western Canada.

Style Matters (Tim Cook)

You wear a T-shirt and take an X-ray, but send an email. You throw your garbage in a Dumpster. You tweet on Twitter. There are 105 senators in the Senate, but only one from the N.W.T. For nearly a century, The Canadian Press has been the standard-bearer for style in Canadian journalism. Through the years, The Canadian Press has tried to apply certain principles when coming up with style rules. The nature of the English language, and the habits of the people who use it, can make that challenging, especially in an era where publishing has never been easier or more accessible. Join Prairies-North News Editor Tim Cook as he takes you through some of the ins and outs of Canadian Press style.

Tim Cook is news editor at The Canadian Press and has been based in its Prairie bureau since 2008. He is a Ryerson graduate. 

The Rules of the Game: How to Land a Journalism Internship (Panel) 

Hundreds of aspiring journalists apply each year for coveted journalism internships, but only a handful snag the coveted positions. How do you make yourself stand out and secure that interview for your dream job?  What should you include in your resume, cover letter and portfolio? And what are the pitfalls of internship applications that you should avoid at all costs? Learn from our panel of three expert intern hiring managers: Stephanie Coombs, managing editor of the Edmonton Journal; Neil Fitzpatrick, an executive producer at CBC Edmonton; and Kathe Lemon, editor of Avenue Magazine. Their advice just may just land you a job someday.

Likable protagonists: the business of book reviewing, writing your own, and trying to publish both (Michael Hingston)

Join Edmonton Journal books columnist Michael Hingston as he explains what it takes to be a successful book reviewer — as well as how to get the job in the first place. While also drawing on his experience publishing his own novel in 2013, Hingston will argue that while fictional characters don’t have to be at all pleasant to be around, the authors and journalists writing about them probably should.

Michael Hingston is the books columnist for the Edmonton Journal and author of the campus comedy The Dilettantes.

Why I Went To Practice — Covering Sports From The Arena, Not The Basement (Mark Spector)

Mark Spector takes you inside the clubhouses, dressing rooms and press boxes of a 26-year career in sports journalism, where the only way to learn anything about the game is to show up, ask questions, keep your mouth (mostly) shut and your ears open. How do you spot the right angle? How do you find out if the coach is telling you the truth? Which players do you need to maintain a relationship with, and which ones are safe to make collateral damage? Why are scouts and trainers some of the best sources in sports?

Mark Spector is a senior columnist for Sportsnet.ca and has worked at the National Post and the Edmonton Journal.

Social Media in Reporting: Legal Restrictions and Considerations (Matthew Woodley)

Communications lawyer Matthew Woodley will review the traditional limits on reporting, including defamation, privacy, copyright and contempt, and will explain how they apply in the modern reporting environment. He will address areas of development and limitations in the law, along with tips on how to avoid lawsuits or criminal charges.

Matthew Woodley teaches Communications Law at MacEwan University and works as a partner at Reynolds Mirth Farmer & Farmer LLP. 

Who gets a voice? Journalism and social change (Larkin Schmiedl)

Many of us start off in media with ideals of exposing injustice, giving voice to the voiceless, watchdogging the powerful and speaking truth to power. If we’re working to bring the hidden to light, eventually we run up against our society’s power structures. The way we as journalists give language to what we represent affects the ways people can become informed and engaged in the world. This workshop will discuss how journalists can reach out to include marginalized communities in their work in ways that build relationship and bring about change.”

Larkin Schmiedl is a Vancouver-based freelancer and former staffer at TRU Kamloops’ Omega. His passions are social and ecological justice.

Disaster Reporting (Jason Markusoff) 

The roads are out. Thousands are evacuated. The scale of damage is staggering. And more eyeballs are glued to your website or broadcast than ever before. After covering southern Alberta’s floods last summer, Calgary Herald writer Jason Markusoff will walk you through reporting on a disaster as it unfolds, from the newsroom and in the chaotic (or eerily quiet) streets.

Normally a city hall reporter, Jason Markusoff anchored the Calgary Herald’s live blog for the flood. His first flood shift lasted 21 hours.

Radio: The New Old School (Matt Hirji)

They say that radio is the wireless transmission of signals through free space by electromagnetic radiation of a frequency between 30 kHz to 300 GHz. They say that radio is dead. In his presentation Matt Hirji will tell you why it isn’t. He’ll talk to you about how to use those radio frequencies to your advantage when conducting an interview, and then how to use interviews to craft a story for the most intimate of mediums.

Matt Hirji is the News Director at CJSR FM 88.5. He likes telling stories. He has a giant block poster of Ira Glass in office.

The other side of the arts pitch (Paul Blinov)

What’s the difference between average and exceptional arts journalism? How do you identify which pieces are editor-intriguing samples, and then deliver that level of dedicated radness in every article you write? From criticism to interviews to story pitches, Vue Weekly’s arts and film editor will draw the distinction between good and great arts writing, and explain how freelance writers become freelance regulars, keeping their editors coming back for more.

Paul Blinov is a writer, editor and man about town, that town being Edmonton. He was CUP’s 09/10 arts bureau chief.

Taking it to the Tweeps: Opinion writing in the social media age (Paula Simons)

Once upon a time, opinion writers composed solemn, authoritative editorial and columns, and waited for people to mail in letters to the editor. Today, opinion writers are called upon to provide analysis and insight in real time, on live social media platforms. In a world in which everyone has an opinion, how do “real” opinion writers develop and maintain an authoritative community voice?

Paula Simons is the Edmonton Journal City columnist and a five-time National Newspaper Award nominee.

Getting Paid to Drink Beer: Craft Beer, Cultural Trends and the Niche of Lifestyle Journalism (Jason Foster)

Craft beer is the largest growing segment of the liquor industry. What once was the bastion of frat boys and football fans is becoming a legitimate source of serious culinary experience. Jason Foster is an Edmonton-based beer writer and educator who has for the past eight years developed a beer journalism and consulting business. Jason will discuss the dynamics of niche journalism and how one can get paid to write objectively about one’s passion, whether it be beer, food, fashion, gaming or whatever. He will also discuss the realities of niche journalism, including how to balance industry insight with journalistic distance and how to maintain one’s integrity in a small community. Plus, there will be some talk about tasty beer in town.

Jason Foster is a beer writer and educator on a mission to educate Canadians about craft beer and its importance in the world.

Word Nerds: Why Copy Editing Counts (Kim Tannas)

Errors and inconsistencies in grammar, punctuation and style can call into question the credibility of any publication. Discover the important role that copy editing plays in a newsroom. What is the difference between copy editing, substantive editing and proofreading? How do you copy edit “without harm” – preserving the writer’s unique voice and approach? How do you create and maintain an in-house style guide? Also, learn some tips and tricks to help you spot errors. Even if you’re not interested in becoming a copy editor, understanding the basics of copy editing can help you become a better writer and editor, and improve any publication you’re working on.

Kim Tannas is the copy chief at the award-winning Venture Publishing Inc., where she’s been editing and copy editing magazines for more than a decade.

Taking the Free out of Freelancing: Panel

That major daily might not take your CD review, but there are still plenty of freelance opportunities out there — you just need to know where to find them and how to make an impression. Join three successful freelance journalists — Omar Mouallem, Michael Hingston and Lyndsie Bourgon — as they share their tips and strategies on maintaining a viable and long-term freelance career.

Omar Mouallem a National Magazine Awards nominated writer who has contributed to the Globe and Mail, The Walrus and Alberta Views.

Michael Hingston is the books columnist for the Edmonton Journal and author of the campus comedy The Dilettantes.

Lyndsie Bourgon is a freelance journalist based in Calgary. She is a former CUP Features Bureau Chief and was co-editor-in-chief of the University of King’s College’s The Watch.


The World Still Needs Freelance Photojournalists (Jimmy Jeong)

Freelance photojournalist Jimmy Jeong will share his advice and tips for surviving the harsh landscape of today’s freelance market. The session will include business tips, contract tips, portfolio advice and what you need to do before calling some of Canada’s top photo editors.

Jimmy Jeong is a freelance photojournalist based in Vancouver, B.C., who has worked for Maclean’s Magazine, The Canadian Press, Getty Images, Bloomberg News, and The Globe and Mail. 

One flash, two flashes, three flashes, Four – Advanced Portrait Workshop (Jimmy Jeong)

From newspapers, to magazines to corporate clients, being able to take a great portrait photograph is a prerequisite to getting that job. This hands-on workshop will explore different techniques using off-camera lighting and light modifiers.

Jimmy Jeong is a freelance photojournalist based in Vancouver, B.C., who has worked for Maclean’s Magazine, The Canadian Press, Getty Images, Bloomberg News, and The Globe and Mail. 

iPhone photography: the basics (Max Hurd & Adam Gaumont)

They say the best camera is the one you have with you, and for many of us, that’s the one in our pocket. While they are not a replacement for a proper DSLR body and lens, camera phones such as the iPhone 5 can still produce amazing photos – if you know how to get the most out of your device.

In this session, Max Hurd and Adam Gaumont from the University of Alberta will present some tips and tricks for how to shoot and edit high-quality images on your iPhone (or similar).


Intro: iPhone, DSLR, or potato?; Beginner: Focus, exposure, and timing; Intermediate: Composition and light; Advanced: Editing (beyond Instagram filters); 1337: Perspective and symmetry; PLUS (if there’s time): Other ways to hack your camera (beyond the Camera app).

Max Hurd is the Multimedia Coordinator at the University of Alberta’s Office of the Registrar. He works mostly in photography, film, design, and social media.

Adam Gaumont is a Communications Strategist at the University of Alberta, with a background in newspapers and digital publishing. True fact: he was once EIC of The Gateway.


How data is creating new opportunities for journalists (Fred Vallance-Jones)

Data journalism has gone from being something done by a few nerdy folks relegated to a back corner of the newsroom to something that is on the lips of managers, reporters and entrepreneurial journalists worldwide. But what is it, and how can data make or change your career? Fred Vallance-Jones teaches data journalism to undergrads and grad students at King’s, and will show you why data is no longer just a four-letter word.

Fred Vallance-Jones teaches investigative data journalism at the University of King’s College in Halifax. 

The Podcasting Renaissance (Adam Rozenhart)

Remember when podcasting was popular in the early 2000s? Don’t worry, neither does anyone else. It’s even more popular now than it was then — thanks to the ubiquity of smartphones, iTunes, YouTube and Soundcloud. More than ever, people who spend a significant portion of their time online are tuning in to podcasts — both audio and visual. Adam will make a case for getting into podcasting, and he’ll discuss the ingredients you need to launch your own show. As a bonus, if you’re the editor of a student paper that isn’t podcasting, he’ll gently and endearingly berate you — because he thinks everyone should be doing it.

Adam Rozenhart is a digital strategist, founder of OilersNation.com, the Unknown Studio podcast and the Edmonton New Media Awards.

DSLR video: the basics (Max Hurd & Adam Gaumont)

Or, how to make videos on a budget that don’t suck.

In recent years, digital photography equipment has evolved to the point where it has become a viable alternative to traditional camcorders. This has sparked a revolution in amateur and DIY videography, putting the means of video production into the hands of many more users outside of the professional realm. Today, many DSLR cameras can produce stunning, high-quality videos – if you know how to use them. Combined with simple lighting and audio-recording techniques, you, too, can learn how to make a video that doesn’t suck.

In this session, Max Hurd and Adam Gaumont from the University of Alberta will provide some hints and tips for how to get the most out of a modest equipment budget.


Intro: Camera body and lens choices; other equipment must-haves; Beginner: Let there be light! (Natural vs artificial); Intermediate: Sound is half of what you see. (Using microphones and recorders); Advanced: Light temperature and colour balance; 1337: Picture profiles; Codecs; Camera RAW (OMG WTF); PLUS: Tripod vs monopod vs handheld

Not included in this session: Editing & post-production; storytelling and interviewing; etc.

Max Hurd is the Multimedia Coordinator at the University of Alberta’s Office of the Registrar. He works mostly in photography, film, design, and social media.

Adam Gaumont is a Communications Strategist at the University of Alberta, with a background in newspapers and digital publishing. True fact: he was once EIC of The Gateway.

Mobile is eating journalism (Matt Frehner) 

In case you haven’t noticed, something big is happening to the way we read. More than 75% of the cellphones in Canada are smartphones. Some 9.4 million Canadians check Facebook on their phone or tablet every day. And 34 per cent of you (yes, you) read news only via a mobile device. We’re going to talk about what the mobile explosion means for journalism, and why it’s critical to understand your audience as a group of fundamentally mobile readers. We’ll talk about how mobile-first journalism helps us define the best way of telling a story, for all platforms. And we’ll look at how The Globe has been working through these problems (and trying to make some money in the process).

Matt Frehner is the Mobile Editor at The Globe and Mail. He works to design and build new ways of delivering the news.

Spycraft for journalists (Lucas Timmons) — 2 hours

Cryptography, anonymous email, proxy servers. These aren’t just buzzwords from spy movies — they are technologies that journalists are using to keep confidential sources confidential, keep whistleblowers safe from corporations and work safely where governments detain journalists. In this session you’ll learn how to encrypt files to prevent police from reading them, ensure no one is reading your email conversations except you and the intended recipient and how to protect yourself from all kinds of attacks from government or corporate hackers and thieves.

Bring a laptop and be prepared to install software.

Lucas Timmons is the Special Editor for Data Journalism at the Edmonton Journal. In CUP he was the first ever Cupcaster and the EIC of the Athenauem. 

Drone journalism (Lucas Timmons)

Unmanned aerial vehicles are growing more sophisticated and cheaper with each passing day. No longer just million-dollar killing machines owned by militaries or children’s toys, drone technology is accessible and useful for journalists. In this session, we’ll talk about what drones are, how they work, how expensive they are and their potential uses for journalism. We’ll also talk about the law surrounding the use of drones in Canada. And we’ll have a live demonstration of a smaller drone, running free, open-source software. We’ll also look at a much more sophisticated drone and how it works.

Lucas Timmons is the Special Editor for Data Journalism at the Edmonton Journal. In CUP he was the first ever Cupcaster and the EIC of the Athenauem. 

Really?! You shot that with your phone? (Ryan Jackson)

It’s not the camera that shoots the video — it’s the videographer. Everyone has an iPhone or Android that can shoot surprisingly good video. Although most papers have D-SLRs and cameras, do you really know what to do after you push the record button? This workshop is for journalists at all levels and will include helpful tips on how to capture decent video with your smartphone and advanced tips on how to make your footage look and sound more professional. With some basic rules to always follow (and sometimes know when to break), you’ll learn how to shoot video with your smartphone that doesn’t look like it was shot with a smartphone.

Ryan Jackson is a senior multimedia photojournalist at the Edmonton Journal and the winner of several national and international multimedia awards.

Advanced Interactive Multimedia Journalism (Ryan Jackson) — 2 hours

Seems like everyone is shooting video now, eh? Wish your work could stand apart? Wish there were ways you could have a more engaged audience on your website?

This advanced workshop will appeal to videographers and photographers wanting to challenge themselves and also any web designers and coders who would like to collaborate their skills to take multimedia to the next level online. Ryan Jackson has been a pioneer in Canadian journalism for creating 360-degree interactive video and games. He recently won a North American Eppy Award for his 360-degree choose your own adventure game of a carnival. http://punkoryan.com/capex360/ Come to get inspired, scared, excited, challenged, informed and have your mind blown!

Ryan Jackson is a senior multimedia photojournalist at the Edmonton Journal and the winner of several national and international multimedia awards.


Kicking ass and taking names: Creative inspiration from the design world (Jason Chiu)

The future of print hasn’t gotten any brighter. Cuts, job losses, something called Twitter, and declining ad revenue are all contributing factors.  But print is still kicking ass and taking names.  We’ll review standouts of print design from the past year, everything from killer magazine covers to controversial newspaper presentations, right down to where Art Directors and Design Directors get some of their wackiest ideas.  And, how you can beat them at their own game.

Jason Chiu is Design Editor at The Globe And Mail and is the recipient of back-to-back National Newspaper Awards.

Storytelling Through Illustration: The Art of Creating Art for a Mass Media Audience (Mike Kendrick)

Many journalists like to think that a well-written article can tell the whole story, but a good illustrator knows that words often aren’t enough. Freelance illustrator Mike Kendrick explores the art of visual storytelling from cave paintings to comic books to show how illustration has been used throughout history to convey the messages that words cannot. He’ll show you how to employ key strategies to get to the heart of a story and ensure that your editorial art is more than just pretty pictures on a page.

Mike Kendrick is an illustrator, designer, and jokes enthusiast who’s been making pictures for print since his days as a Gateway volunteer.

New Media/Entrepreneurship

Take chances, make mistakes, get messy: Experiments in community-building (Karen Unland and Brittney Le Blanc)

Follow the adventures of two intrepid experimenters in Edmonton who left traditional journalism to search for new ways to serve their city and maybe save the news business in the process. For the past year and a half, Karen Unland and Brittney Le Blanc have been part of a team at Postmedia Labs that is working on new ways to serve communities, through Capital Ideas (for entrepreneurs) and Gastropost (for food lovers). Learn how to make your news organization useful in a whole different way and how to build and maintain a community, a valuable asset in the realm of new journalism.

Karen Unland runs Capital Ideas at the Edmonton Journal. She was EiC of The Gateway around the time you were born.

Brittney Le Blanc is the community manager for Gastropost Alberta. She started in news radio, met over 5,000 new people in a year and helped co-found the Edmonton New Media Awards.

Building a digital media empire in five easy steps (Adam Rozenhart)

You’d think creating a series of hockey blogs rich with content and ripe with revenue potential would be easy in a country like Canada. And you’d be wrong. Turns out it’s really, really hard. But hopefully you can learn from the wins and losses that form the story of the creation and eventual success of OilersNation.com, TheLeafsNation.com and other sites in the Nation Network. Bring your entrepreneur hat, your blinders to criticism and naysaying, and your “Haters gonna hate” travel mug to this session.

Adam Rozenhart is a digital strategist, founder of OilersNation.com, the Unknown Studio podcast and the Edmonton New Media Awards.

Storytelling Going Digital : How e-Editions could revitalize the newspaper industry (Mélanie Boudreau & Ayelet Germanski)

Tired of hearing the same negative facts and numbers about the traditional print newspaper industry? We all are. But let’s face it — publishers and journalists have a tough job these days. Content is going digital by the second, but in a world where everything moves, and attention spans are shorter than that of your little two year old’s – replicating your publication online simply doesn’t cut it. Well, we’ve got good news for you. We’re Virtual Paper, and we’re about to turn your digital presence from a headache to the fuel that will revitalize the newspaper industry! This session will present the CUP Research Project, powered by Virtual Paper. To make magic happen, we are going to need your participation in the project. Are you ready?

Mélanie Boudreau has been working with Virtual Paper for the last year, as a Marketing & Account Manager. Besides work, she is also a food blogger and event maker.

Ayelet Germanski is Virtual Paper’s Production & Account Manager, where she’s worked for two years. Born in Israel, she’s an exotic gypsy colleague.

Scribbling Live: Real-time reporting and getting the most from social media (Allendria Brunjes) — 2 training sessions

Rob Ford. The Boston Marathon bombings. Syria. The Super Bowl. Some of the world’s biggest news organizations are using ScribbleLive to cover their most important stories, publishing information as it happens and pulling in posts from social media. Learn why they’re doing it and how it increases their audience engagement.

Allendria Brunjes is ScribbleLive’s training lead. From Al Jazeera to TorStar, she helps orgs around the world with live news strategies.

How to build a new media venture and spend almost nothing in the process (Emerson Csorba)

In Guy Kawasaki’s Art of the Start, Kawasaki writes about the importance of growing new ventures while spending as little cash as possible. He refers to this as “bootstrapping,” which is now a glorified term in entrepreneurship circles. This session will share takeaways from the successful launch and growth of the online media publication The Wanderer Online. It’s one of Western Canada’s most successful online media ventures, with over 1,200 articles, 75 writers and 100,000 unique readers in the first year – spending less than $250 in the process. The session will highlight how cash-strapped students can achieve impressive results with little money spent.

Emerson Csorba is editor-in-chief of The Wanderer Online, an online media venture based in Edmonton.

I’m Doin’ Me (JJ Brewis and Tomas Børsa)

Are you a self-promoting egotist? Do you enjoy irregular patterns of sleep? Do you want to avoid “selling out to the man”? Then you may be ideally suited to the worlds of self-publishing and freelancing. Two BFFs and roommates with entirely different goals and interests will share their common interest: producing original content with non-traditional methods. We will explore both the ups and downs of working for yourself, the benefits of multimedia collaboration, and the glee of going it alone.

Tomas Borsa is co-founder and Director of Line In The Sand, an independent multimedia project, and former Opinions Editor of The Sheaf.

JJ Brewis is the co-founder and editor of Lords of Dogwood, a West coast-based online entertainment magazine, and a regular contributor to Ion Magazine.


Local Advertising – Seduce and Destroy (Vikram Seth) — 2 hours

How to:

-       Price print and online publications

-       Create a useful media kit

-       Figure out unique selling points

-       Target clients

-       Negotiate with clients

-       Budget and forecast ad revenue

-       Establish commission structures

-       Introduce a sales intern

Vikram Seth served as The Gateway’s ad sales manager for 3 years, in which time he doubled ad revenue. He has since launched FREE Media.

Governance & Policy (Ashleigh Brown)

Do you know where your bylaws sleep at night? Everyone knows policy, standing committees, reporting structures, and accountability are for the birds. But without them even our best-laid plans can go south. Learn how good governance can more effectively mobilize your staff, membership, and board, ease long-term planning, facilitate retention and support turnover, and prevent the breakdowns in workflow and communication that most commonly undermine member-driven, non-profit organizations.

Ashleigh Brown is the Operations Manager at FREE Media and the former Business Manager at The Gateway. She’s a maven of non-profit shenanigans.

Making a career in media sustainable (Katherine Lapointe)

Find out what resources exist to support media workers once they graduate from school and launch their careers. Whether you end up in a traditional workplace, in a contract position, or working as a freelancer there are unions and organizations that you can draw on for support. This session will lay out what organizations exist, how you can get involved in them and their advocacy work, and what training, networking, and job resources you can access.

Katherine Lapointe is the Associate Member Program Coordinator for CWA Canada, Canada’s only all-media union.

Financial management (Karen Fournell)

Where’s the green at? Balancing the books isn’t always easy, but we’re here to help with tips and tricks that can take you beyond cashing in your empties. Learn the basics of how to effectively forecast revenues and expenditures, track and adjust spending, prioritize resources, and make the best decisions for your paper. Wondering who’s got their hands on your piggy bank? We’ll also discuss how to increase transparency with a crash course on how to evaluate financial reports, encourage accountability, and facilitate all levels of membership having a hand in the shaping of where their dollars flow. Q & A session to follow.

Karen Fournell is a 14-year arts manager with Rapid Fire, Shadow, Varscona Alliance, FAVA, and PACE. She’s a former journalist and always a treasurer.

Your paper in a campus setting (Bryn Ossington)

How should your paper navigate its relationships with other campus organizations, including SUs and University Admin? This session will focus on developing strong operational procedures agreements between the paper and University Parties, and will touch on issues such as running referenda and competing against defunding campaigns.

Bryn Ossington is the Executive Director of WLU Student Publications, & co-founder and writer for @AlbatrossNews. He can’t write but he can direct.

Having Those Awkward Conversations: Addressing HR Issues in a Student-Run Organization (Marc Charbonneau)

It’s Monday morning and one of the writers for the newspaper has posted a number of slanderous posts about the newspaper on Facebook. What do you do?  Every year, the newspaper faces nearly 100% turnover of their writing staff. How do you mitigate this inevitable issue?  Sitting someone down and discussing their inappropriate humour at work, rejecting a requesting for vacation, or – even – firing them, will inevitably be uncomfortable and a bit awkward. This session will discuss ways to handle various Human Resources issues that student newspapers face.

Marc Charbonneau is a certified Human Resources professional who has worked in healthcare and on the board of not-for-profits organizations.

Money Talks! (Panel)

Student newspapers are constantly looking for new ways to gain revenue, so let’s talk sponsorships, fundraising and contra deals. Trades have been part of our economy since the beginning of time, and sometimes we can get things we need by simply offering up advertising space. Learn how to do effective and valuable contra deals with clients and suppliers. Sponsorship opportunity are all around us: in our schools and our communities. Find out how to secure sponsorships and get free stuff! And fundraising ain’t just car washes and bake sales anymore: listen to our panel discuss fundraising ideas that have worked for them, and tell us what you’ve done at your newspaper to increase revenue in non-traditional ways. Panelists include: Deidre Butters, advertising representative of The Fulcrum; Mike Davies, editor-in-chief of The Omega; and Marta Ligocki, university outreach liaison of CJSW Radio. The panel will be moderated by Jason Schreurs.