Posted in Conferences & Conventions, Education, journalism, Webinar

Calendar of Multimedia Training, Events & Fellowships

By Benét J. Wilson, NABJ Digital Journalism Task Force chair

Webbmedia Group has a great calendar of events that catches things not covered below.  If you want to subscribe to the calendar, click hereYou can also subscribe to this calendar so the information appears on your personal Google Calendar. Just go to the Webbmedia Google calendar, click the “+Google Calendar” icon at the bottom right, and then click “Yes, add this calendar” in the dialog box.)

The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism at Arizona State University has updated its calendar of free workshops and webinars through March.  And Media Bistro has its current course list available through March.

  • Ongoing: Steve Buttry, director of community engagement and social media for Journal Register Co., is teaching the Poynter News University course Introduction to Reporting: Beat Basics. This free, self-taught course helps you identify the key issues and sources on your beat, learn how to determine what’s included in your beat and develop the resources.


  • Public Business is offering grants for deeply researched stories about companies and the impact they have on the economy, the environment or society. We welcome proposals for projects of all lengths, but we are particularly keen to receive proposals for medium-to-long form work.  The grants cover the hard costs of reporting, such as travel, interpretation, security and other logistics, obtaining or reproducing documents, etc. The amount of the grant will depend on the project proposed, but most grants will fall between $2500 and $6000.  The deadline to apply is Nov. 28.



  • The International Radio and Television Society Foundation is now taking applications for its 2012 Summer Fellowship Program.  The program teaches up-and-coming communicators the realities of the business world through an expense-paid fellowship, which includes practical experience and career-planning advice. Each year college juniors, seniors and graduate students are selected nationwide to participate in the nine-week Summer Fellowship Program.  The deadline to apply is Dec. 1.
  • WordCamp Orlando will be held Dec. 3 at UCF’s Rosen College of Hospitality Management.
  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free webinar, “Quick-Hit Business Investigations — Concept to Execution” Dec. 6 at noon or 4:00 p.m. EDT. Matt Apuzzo, investigative reporter at the Washington bureau of The Associated Press will provide practical advice on how to pull off investigations that might take one to two weeks.


  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold the Strictly Financials/Business Journalism Professors Seminars in Phoenix, Ariz., Jan. 2-5, 2012.  The center is offering 24 fellowships worth $2,000 each for four days of study in business journalism for experienced business journalists and prospective business journalism professors.  Fellowships cover training, lodging, materials and most meals. Fellows receive a $500 stipend to offset travel and other costs.
  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free webinar, “Cracking Private Companies,” in Phoenix, Jan. 5.  Arm yourself with the knowledge and tools to find public information on private companies and to tell their stories better.
  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free online webinar, “Investigating Private Companies and Nonprofits,” Jan. 23-26.  During the webinar, discover the many public documents that are available on private companies and nonprofits. Even if private companies don’t have to disclose their financials, they do have to file other documents with federal, state and local governments.
  • J-Lab: The Institute for Interactive Journalism at American University has been awarded $250,000 from the McCormick Foundation to fund eight innovative women-led news startups over the next two years under the McCormick New Media Women Entrepreneurs initiative. Under the grant, eight winners (four in 2012 and four in 2013) will each be given an initial $12,000 to launch their ideas. The winners will receive an additional $2,000 in the second year if they match it with $2,000 from other sources. The deadline for 2012 proposals is Jan. 27.



  • The Poynter Institute is holding a week-long seminar, “Developing a Smarter Mobile Strategy,” Feb. 6-10 in St. Petersburg, Fla.  You’ll deepen your understanding of the journalistic power of mobile — and of how the public is consuming information on all kinds of hand-held devices, from simple phones to tablets. The cost is $1,175, and the deadline to apply is Jan. 1, 2012.
  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free webinar, “How Not to Be Bamboozled by Local Economic Studies: Online,” Feb. 8-9.  The webinar will give you the tools and techniques you need to read economic studies with a critical eye.
  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free workshop, “Follow the Money – Tracking Companies’ Influence on Politics,” on Feb. 22 in St. Louis.  Bring the name of a company you follow to this workshop and learn how to track its efforts at political influence from two experts: New York Times reporter Ron Nixon and Sunlight Foundation editorial director Bill Allison.


  • The Donald W. Reynolds National Center for Business Journalism will hold a free workshop, “Be a Better Business Watchdog — CAR for Business Journalists,” in  Indianapolis, Ind., on March 15.  Polish your skills in computer-assisted reporting (CAR) and learn how to hold local businesses accountable with this free, daylong workshop co-presented with and Investigative Reporters and Editors.


•           The Scripps Howard Foundation Wire is taking applications for its one-year, post-graduate, multimedia fellowship, beginning in late summer 2012.  The fellow manages and maintains its website and The fellow creates multimedia projects for the Scripps Howard Foundation Wire’s website, works with undergraduate interns to develop multimedia projects and provides leadership to a team to produce news stories and projects.  The fellowship includes a $21,000 stipend ($500/week for 42 weeks), plus free housing in a furnished apartment shared with the program’s undergraduate interns. The fellowship does not include benefits and will not result in a job.  The deadline to apply is April 1.

If you have any items that I’ve missed, please drop me an email via the DJTF Yahoo! Listserv or at benet AT aviationqueen DOT com.  Thanks!

Posted in journalism

Another Journalist Layoff: My Own Story, The Update

By Benét J. Wilson, DJTF chair

First, I must apologize for how I’ve let this blog go.  I really thought that during my unemployment, I’d have much more time to devote to it.  But that wasn’t the case.  In some ways, I worked harder while unemployed that the regular day-to-day operations of a regular job.

The good news is that I did find another job. My first day was Monday.  In my original post on Oct. 7, I offered tips on how those of you in my old situation could jumpstart — or start — your job search efforts.  They work.

I moved away — quickly — from the mourning of the job loss.  I kept hearing how well I was taking the layoff, but I really didn’t have time to look back.  Having that resume ready was very helpful, because I could literally send it at a moment’s notice. Even if you have a job and are comfortable in it (like I was), have the resume ready to send out tomorrow if need be.

One of the three jobs that were offered to me came as a direct result of my 100% updated LinkedIn profile.  My network and groups were great resources for job and freelance leads.  And the recommendations were mentioned in all of my job interviews.

I was a BIG fan of social media (Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Google+) before my layoff, and I’m an even bigger fan now.  I received 2 other job leads (that resulted in offers) from Facebook and Twitter.  And Twitter and Google+ led to a nice pile of freelance work that continues to this day.  I’ve managed to build two great networks — aviation and journalism — using my social media outlets.  And they were my salvation after the layoff.

In the end, I was offered a journalism job, a communications job and an editorial job for an association.  I did struggle, because I thought I wanted to stay in journalism.  But I ended up becoming the director of media relations for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.  This job offered the perfect blend, allowing me to use my communications/PR, community manager, social media consultant and aviation media/marketing skills.  And did I mention that one of the perks is free flying lessons?

So that’s my story.  I want to say thanks to all of you who sent me words of encouragement.  I want to thank my freelance folks for giving me all kinds of great advice for getting set up and what to charge.  I want to thank all my Aviation Week colleagues for their support and personal recommendations.  And thanks to my fellow aviation journalists and the aviation community for the job leads and freelance work.

And for those of you out there still searching — don’t give up.  Work your network and think outside the box — that next job is around the corner!