Blystone to lead JEA Mentoring Program
By Sarah Nichols, MJE
With more than 40 years of experience as a teacher and educational leader, Jane Blystone, Ph.D., MJE, will serve the Journalism Education Association as its Mentoring Program chair. Blystone has been a mentor within the program since 2017.
JEA President Sarah Nichols, MJE, appointed Blystone to serve the remainder of the three-year term after Julia Satterthwaite, MJE, resigned Dec. 1.
“Julia has done an incredible job of harnessing the virtual environment to provide credential training for new mentors to ensure we are providing the best mentors possible to new journalism teachers,” Blystone said. “In addition, she has assembled a stellar committee who work together monthly.
“I am excited to chair the JEA Mentoring Program as we work diligently to support new journalism teachers and our trained mentors to provide individual support for new journalism teachers as they build programs of excellence in their schools.”
Blystone and her committee will continue to recruit and train mentors to fill the current demand.
“As we sail on uncharted waters during a time of uncertainty in all educational settings, this is the time to marshal our members, especially mid-career and retired members, to take on a mentee,” she said.
Noting the sizable list of new journalism teachers requesting mentors, Blystone said she aims to fill as many requests as possible by the beginning of the second semester. The start of her tenure overlaps with another mentor recruitment initiative underway.
“As I work with state directors this month to add one new mentor in each state, I know Jane will be incredibly helpful and supportive of us reaching this goal. She realizes the value of having strong teachers as mentors,” JEA Vice President Val Kibler, MJE, said.
In addition to her experience with the mentoring committee, Blystone serves on JEA’s Certification Committee and has been active with the Scholastic Press Rights Committee, Journalist of the Year judging and as a past member of the board of directors.
“Jane is among the most passionate, nurturing veterans in our scholastic journalism community,” Nichols said. “I know she is first and foremost a master teacher who wants what is best for teachers and their students. At the same time, her 20-plus years serving JEA in a variety of ways affirms she also wants what’s best for our organization. I’m thrilled to see her strengthen and grow this signature JEA program.”