VAJTA Invites You to Relax, Recharge, and Earn Some PD

VAJTA Invites You to Relax, Recharge, and Earn Some PD

Daniel Reinish, VAJTA Director

Let’s face it. It’s been a rough few years—both in the world of education and the word at large—and the recent omicron surge hasn’t made things any easier.

With that in mind, we at VAJTA have decided to take a break from our annual winter adviser retreat to give everyone, from our officers to our members, just a little more time to relax, recharge and focus on their own collective wellbeing.

Although we will not be holding an in-person or synchronous virtual event this year, we still want to provide those who need it with a chance to explore the world of scholastic journalism, sharpen their advising skills, and maybe even earn some professional development points.

And so, we’re proud to present the VAJTA Winter Professional Development Asynchronous Workshop.

We’ve sifted through our database of virtual lessons to create a curated menu of content that we thought would be especially valuable to advisers. We encourage you to explore the sessions listed below at your leisure in the coming weeks.

Should you need to document your participation for any reason, please click here to request a Certificate of Attendance. (Your certificate will be emailed to you automatically as soon as you complete the form.)

Thank you so much for all that you do, not just to open up the world of media and communication to your students but also to create the positive, supportive environment that they need to thrive. We all know how much work that takes, and we’re proud to be part of an amazing community of educators that puts in so much time and effort to make this happen!


Essential Sessions

The following are our Top 5 sessions for advisers in 2022:

Who Are You? Developing Your Advising Philosophy

  • Presenter: Jack Kennedy
  • Description: Don’t wait forever to develop your core values as an adviser. They are your foundation when tough times arrive (and they always do).

Staff Organization

  • Presenter: Marsha Kalkowski, MJE
  • Description: This session will explain how Kalkowski organizes her staff. No perfect system is going to work for every staff every year, but if you can gain a few ideas or can find support of what you are already doing, then this session will be worth your time.

Building Your Staff Manual

  • Presenter: Margie Raper, MJE
  • Description: Your staff manual is a field guide and the go-to playbook to run your media program. Hear some advice and tips for building a staff manual for your journalism team.

Five Things You Don’t Want to Miss on JEADigitalMedia.org

  • Presenter: Aaron Manfull
  • Description: Manfull guides you through the must-see posts on JEAdigitalmedia.org, one of the most valuable resources out there for student journalists and advisers.

Journalism Bootcamp

  • Presenter: Michelle Corbett
  • Description: Journalism Bootcamps are a great way to get a head-start on training your staff to hit the ground running with a new school year. With all of the challenges created by a pandemic, the news is still happening, and this session will help you figure out how to get your staffs the skills they need.

Bonus Content

If you have time, be sure to check out some of these sessions, too:

10 Tips To Get a Solid System in Place To Report Breaking News

  • Presenter: Aaron Manfull
  • Description: Ever have something happen at your school you weren’t planning on? Were you prepared to cover it? This must-see video will help you get a protocol in place for dealing with breaking news.

A Walk Through the JEA Curriculum and More Resources

  • Presenter: Shari Adwers
  • Description: Take a journey through the JEA Curriculum with JEA Curriculum leader Shari Adwers. Learn how to navigate this abundant resource as you build your own curriculum map this year.

Be a Coach, Not a Boss

  • Presenter: Abri Nelson
  • Description: Leadership is more than just telling people what to do. This session will show your multiple models for leadership, and help you engage in reflection to find your own leadership style.

Plays Well with Others

  • Presenter: Mike Malcom-Bjorkland
  • Description: Whether working with the surly veteran, know-it-all editor, protective reporter, or overzealous publisher, knowing how to collaborate in the 21st century is vital to sustaining, maintaining, and succeeding in the media marketplace. Join us in learning how to build a harmonious communications environment.

Staff Management and Building Community

  • Presenter: Renee Burke
  • Description: To be an effective team, you need to build relationships and community on your staff. This session will give you TONS of ideas for getting the most out of your team and tips about managing your media.

Request Certificate of Attendance