Seeking coordinator for Day of Doing

Seeking coordinator for Day of Doing

From Mark Newton, JEA president

I remember being in awe of my high school journalism teacher Gary Cordray. That respect more than adequately explains that I’m a student media adviser because of him. I owe him so much. One of the reasons I was in awe of “Coach” (he also was my basketball coach at Grand Junction High School in Colorado) was because he was a working journalist. A couple of nights a week and on weekends, Coach was a copy editor for the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel.

Fast forward 35 years to a conversation I’m having with JEA Executive Director Kelly Furnas about a plan I have for JEA members. After telling Kelly about the Day of Doing, Kelly told me about one of his favorite college professors. Kelly shared that, just like I respected Coach Cordray, he was in awe of Paul Parsons. Why? Paul spent his summers interning in professional newsrooms.

Our current students are no different than Kelly and me. They respect their teachers, for sure. And, with your participation in the inaugural JEA Day of Doing, they will even more.

JEA’s Day of Doing will be a one-day event where scholastic journalism educators across the world will produce journalism to share with our students, each other and other media. Individually or in maestro groups, participants will select a story to cover and a means of creating it. The content created will be shared on a new website,

In groups or single handedly, advisers will pick their own topic and write stories, take photographs (and write captions!), and/or produce multimedia packages in their own communities. As a participant you may simply share a photograph and caption or produce a four-page newspaper or content-driven yearbook spread or produce a video package.

You might think of it as similar to News21, the Carnegie-Knight Initiative on the Future of Journalism Education ( News21 is a national initiative to train a new generation of journalists capable of reshaping the news industry. Our focus might be a national initiative to help journalism educators better understand the tools and skills required to help reshape the teaching and learning of scholastic media.

We’ll pick a day, probably in early summer, for the event. JEA will create the website. We intend for the website to be dynamic so any JEA member can contribute content at any time. We intend to make this an annual event, much like Scholastic Journalism Week or Constitution Day.

If you (or you and a partner) are interested in serving as the national coordinator of this event, please send me a letter of interest by Dec. 1.

As the national coordinator, you will be expected to work with JEA staff to create and manage the website, select the date(s), promote the event to JEA members and media, monitor the event and report directly to the JEA president and to the JEA board of directors. Interested persons must have management, organizational and editing skills, as well as working knowledge of copyright (all content will be established as Creative Commons to news outlets, wire services, newspapers, radio, TV and/or websites can pick up stories and run them free of charge) WordPress, Photoshop and QuickTime. JEA hopes to provide a small stipend to the coordinator(s).

In addition, the national coordinator will seek grants to sustain this as an annual JEA event.

I hope you will consider taking the lead on this project (letter of interest due Dec. 1). In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact me at

All the best,


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