Convention FAQs

1. How will my staff benefit from attending the JEANC State Convention?
Students and advisers will have an opportunity to attend sessions hosted by some of the best media professionals and advisers from northern California and other areas of the nation. Beyond networking with other schools, your students will have the chance to enter contests and competitions, as well as seek input to guide their publications through the rest of the year.

2. What is the cost to attend the convention?
Registration for the convention is $55 per person when you register prior to Oct. 1. After the early-registration cutoff date, the fee to register is $65. Early registration includes a convention t-shirt. Advisers who volunteer to judge or moderate on-site contests and present a session or present two sessions will have their registration fee waived.

3. What is the Best of the West contest?

Enter your publication in competition with other schools in attendance. Similar to NSPA’s Best of Show competition at national conventions, this contest is divided by school size for yearbook, page count for newspaper or newsmagazine and type for online media. All entries must be received at the registration desk by 10 a.m. Saturday morning. Results are announced at the closing ceremony. ($10)

4. What are the on-site contests?
During this Friday afternoon activity, students will compete in a category of their choosing (maximum two per school) in a self-contained contest similar to the JEA write-offs at national conventions. These contests do not involve any special preparation; in most newswriting categories, participants will hear a guest speaker from which the contest topics are based. For the other contest categories, students bring their contest entry and participate in a group critique before they are judged. Results are announced at the closing ceremony. Note: Limit two per school per category. ($10 early, $15 late if space)

5. What is the Photography Excursion?
Bring a digital camera and enjoy a walking photo shoot through midtown Sacramento with a veteran photojournalism adviser. Gain valuable tips on photography while seeing part of the city and photographing as you go. Afterward, you’ll upload your images for critique/discussion in an afternoon follow-up session. Images will be showcased at the closing ceremony. Note: Pre-registration required, limit two per staff. Participants must bring their own cameras. (free)

6. What is the Convergence Excursion?
If your staff is looking for ways to do better multimedia storytelling on the web, this double session will get you started. We’ll go over planning team coverage, combining the verbal and visual, and integrating embeddable online tools. The second hour session will be off-site reporting, and projects may be showcased on the JEANC website.  Note: Pre-registration required, limit three per staff. Students can come alone or in teams, though singles will be grouped with others. (free)

6. What is the interactive APPtivity?
Bring your iPhone for this interactive session focused on a few free apps for journalists. We’ll introduce a few great tools for mobile reporting with a brief demonstration of each and a handy reference sheet. Throughout the convention, participants will be challenged to practice one or more of these apps, including off-site reporting Friday evening with your staff. Attend a follow-up session Saturday to share what you produced and offer feedback to your peers. Projects may be showcased on the JEANC website.  Note: Some of the featured apps may also have Android and/or iPad versions, but this session will focus on iPhone. Pre-registration required; limit two per staff. (free)

7. Why should I consider signing up for an on-site critique?
Bring your editors or your entire staff to meet with an experienced adviser who will provide valuable feedback about your publication’s content and coverage, writing, design and photography. Bring a few recent copies of your newspaper or your most recent yearbook volume. For online media, choose the best way for you to bring samples but please understand that the critique rooms do not have a live Internet connection. Learn the strengths and improvement areas of your publication from award-winning advisers with the opportunity to ask questions and get individualized feedback. ($15)

8. What is web consultation?
Web consultation is a service we offer to staffs hoping to expand their coverage to the web or who are looking for ways to improve their existing online media. Staffs will be matched with an experienced adviser and student for a one-on-one conversation specific to the staff’s needs. You can sign up for this consultation by signing up for an on-site critique. ($10)

9. Is it possible to attend the convention for one day only?
While it is possible, we encourage staffs to stay for the entire convention to take advantage of all of the exciting sessions, contests and activities we have to offer. Regardless of the duration of your stay, all registrants pay the same fees.

10. What is there to do outside of sessions?
A lot! We’ve got a lineup of activities that will give students an opportunity to meet others and have fun. Follow us on Twitter or like our Facebook page for updates on the many things to do at the convention and nearby.

11. What should we bring?
Students attending the Photography or Convergence Excursions should bring their own equipment, including cameras, card readers, flash drives, recorder and any other necessary external devices. All convention-goers will want basic writing materials for breakout sessions. You’ll receive a nametag and schedule with session descriptions when you check in on site.

12. Where should we stay?
You are welcome to stay anywhere you’d like near the convention center. The Hyatt Regency across the street from the convention center has offered a reduced rate of $129 + tax for up to four occupants. To take advantage of the rate, book by Sept. 27 at

13. What if one of my students can no longer make it?
We are unable to refund paid registrations, though you are welcome to bring a substitute to the convention. If you know the name of your replacement registrant, email it and the name of the attendee being replaced to [email protected].

14. What do I do if I need to add more students to my registration?
Go to the registration page and go through the registration process again only for the additional students. Registration fees for additional students are subject to current (early or late) registration rates.

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Convention FAQs