Training and Mentorship

The cornerstone of JAWS’ work is training and mentorship. Often this takes place at our annual Conference and Mentorship Program (CAMP) gathering, but we also strive to provide opportunities for members to connect through regional gatherings and trainings. In addition, we also work to partner up mentors who wish to share their experience and expertise with mentees who seek to grow, advance and lead. We call this symbiosis, as mentoring is often a two-way exchange.

CAMP 2014: IBook offers entrepreneurial fellow innovative book publishing platform

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Story by 2014 Fellow Caitlin Yoshiko Kandil | Photo by Ellie Van Houtte

11.2.104_JAWSCAMP_Highlights-8414In 1997, Melissa Ludtke traveled to China and adopted a baby who had been abandoned by her birth parents as a result of the country’s one-child policy. For the next 16 years Ludtke raised her daughter Maya in her home state of Massachusetts. When Maya was almost 17 years old, she returned to China to find out what life would have been like had she grown up in the rural countryside.

Ludtke, the first-ever JAWS entreprenurial fellow, sent a team of bilingual videographers along with Maya and her orphanage crib neighbor Jennie to document their journey – and the results are her forthcoming iBook, “Touching Home in China: in search of missing girlhoods.” Ludtke shared the process of creating the interactive iBook on Nov. 2.

CAMP 2014: Women journos rockin’ it – with a little help from the band

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Story by 2014 Fellow Catherine Green | Photos by Ellie Van Houtte

MB2A7771“We’re in an era of chaos and opportunity in journalism — we’re going to talk about the opportunity part.”

It was a fitting way for Dawn Garcia to kick off Saturday’s Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP) panel on fellowships, awards and collaborative projects: the “opportunity part” is what drives her role as managing director of the John S. Knight Journalism Fellowships program at Stanford University. Garcia corralled a chat with Michelle Holmes, VP of content for Alabama Media Group, Claudia Nuñez, founder and director of Migrahack, and Alison Fitzgerald, a reporter at the Center for Public Integrity.

CAMP 2014: Substance over style: The new rules of copy editing

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Story by 2014 Fellow Catherine Green | Photo by Hilary Sloane

_MG_5651Don’t believe the hype. Readers still care about high-quality news online, especially from the outlets they use regularly, according to key findings in Wayne State University professor Fred Vultee’s 2011 study sponsored by the American Copy Editors Society (ACES).

“People aren’t going to pay for your crap if it’s crap,” says Teresa Schmedding, ACES president and deputy managing editor for the Daily Herald in Chicago. According to Vultee’s research, readers care more about grammar than style.

CAMP 2014: Onward — On the shoulders of pioneering women journalists (VIDEO)

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Story by 2014 Fellow Melissa Ludtke | Photos by Ellie Van Houtte

MB2A7843JAWS on Friday honored the hard-fought and enduring achievements of women, who were among its founding board of directors by establishing a fund committed to continuing the progress their actions set in motion. The JAWS Legacy Fund honors its formidable founding directors and supports continued JAWS programming.

CAMP 2014: Anna Holmes on Jezebel, burnout and fear (VIDEO)

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Story by 2014 Fellow Marina Villeneuve | Photos by Ellie Van Houtte

MB2A8135When online media company Gawker Media approached then-magazine editor Anna Holmes to start a women’s website in late 2006, Holmes says she was up for it – but scared.

“Maybe when you get fed up, you get more fearless,” said Holmes, speaking at the Saturday keynote dinner at the annual Journalism and Women Symposium Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP) in Palm Springs, California. “But I wasn’t without fear.”

It was at a time when nobody Holmes knew was moving from print to Web, and when her work in celebrity and fashion reporting was paying the rent, but failing to satisfy her personally.

“It was very scary for me, and I felt very, very fearful,” she said.

CAMP 2014: From Elvis to O.J.: The career of court reporter Linda Deutsch (VIDEO)

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Story by 2014 Fellow Lindsey Anderson | Photos by Ellie Van Houtte | Video by Macrina Newhouse
*Update 12/18/14: Yahoo News reported that Linda is retiring on Dec. 22

MB2A7985A love affair with Elvis Presley got Linda Deutsch her start in journalism.

Deutsch fell madly in love with Presley when she was a 12-year-old in New Jersey. Officials at Elvis headquarters gave her a list of potential fan club members members, and Deutsch began one of the first Elvis fan clubs in the United States. She used her Smith Corona typewriter to write a club newspaper, charging $1 in membership dues in the U.S. and $2 overseas.

“This was so much a prediction of what my career would become in a way,” Deutsch said Saturday at the Journalism and Women Symposium (JAWS) annual Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP).

CAMP 2014: Long-form reporting takes more than an inverted pyramid

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Investigative_KiraZalanStory by 2014 Fellow Marina Villeneuve | Photo by Kira Zalan

The inverted pyramid, a model made popular by newswire services and long taught by journalism schools, stresses putting the most important who-what-where-when-why information up at the top of stories. Though this model has long allowed editors to easily cut off less relevant chunks of information near the end, it can be dull, clunky and lose readers before they get to the end, according to a JAWS panel Oct. 30.

Rather, journalists who undertake investigative projects should approach writing such pieces thematically, said SUNY-Albany journalism professor Rosemary Armao.

CAMP 2014: Jill Abramson ‘Unfettered’ at JAWS (VIDEO)

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Story by 2014 Fellow Suzanne Cosgrove | Photos by Ellie Van Houtte | Video by Macrina Newhouse

MB2A7612In a wide-ranging interview Saturday, former executive editor of The New York Times Jill Abramson talked about her upcoming startup project and said she does not spend much time dwelling on the reason she was fired from The New York Times.

At a breakfast with about 200 JAWS members and the annual Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP) in La Quinta, California, Abramson said that before she was fired by Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr., she was in discussions with CEO Mark Thompson and Sulzberger about her salary, which in 2011 was less than her predecessor’s salary in 2004.

CAMP 2014: Top 11 refreshers on how to keep investigative reporting on track

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Story by 2014 Fellow Lindsey Anderson | Photos by 2014 Fellow Shondiin Silversmith

20141030_122932_Investigative_ShondiinSilversmithPiles of documents. Endless source lists. Months and months of research. Investigative reporting projects can be overwhelming, but they don’t have to be disorganized.

“Journalism is hard. It’s really hard,” said Rosemary Armao, a professor of journalism at the University at Albany, SUNY during a day-long Journalism and Women Symposium Confer

Regional gatherings recap: November 2014

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JAWS Boston: Boston JAWdesses attended a WBUR event with Jill Abramson, where she announced her new startup venture to publish long-form journalism.

Toasts for LindaJAWS D.C.: 
The D.C. regional group toasted our very own Linda Kramer Jennings becoming the new JAWS president at our Nov. 20 monthly happy hour. Members shared stories about all Linda has done for the D.C. group and how excited we are for what she will bring to JAWS on the national level. A few members also spoke about highlights from CAMP for those who weren’t able to attend.

The JAWS 2014 auction is open!

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Starting Oct. 24, 2014, all JAWS members will have the chance to bid on artwork, professional advice, premium wine and some fabulous vacations. Check with your friends and families and book that dream trip!

The JAWS online auction will last just ten days to coincide with the Conference and Mentoring Program (CAMP), ending on Sunday, Nov. 2, at 2 p.m. Pacific time. Keep an eye on your opening bid to be sure you win.

Pulitzer winner Sonia Nazario will speak Sunday night at CAMP

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By Nancy Day, JAWS board member

Sonia Nazario, whose book “Enrique’s Journey” is now used in classrooms across the country, has been added to the Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP) 2014 program.

Nazario first reported on children who make the perilous journey from Honduras to the United States for her six-part series in the Los Angeles Times, which won the 2003 Pulitzer for feature writing. Earlier this year, she re-reported the story, traveling on top of freight trains with boys as young as seven to discover firsthand what is happening now. The drug cartels, squeezed out of Colombia with massive U.S. aid, have moved inland, threatening and ensnaring children and teens.

Celebrating women in film at CAMP

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By Janice Rhoshalle Littlejohn, JAWS member

JAWS is bringing women — and their stories — to the big screen at our Conference and Mentoring Project (CAMP) this year.

With Hollywood just over the mountains and in the midst of the playground of the stars at La Quinta Resort and Club near Palm Springs, what better time to spotlight the remarkable women who make the documentaries and films that have such an impact on our view of the world?