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2006 NewsTrain Program in Minneapolis

APME NewsTrain/Minneapolis

Full Program

May 24 - 25, 2006

NewsTrain is a national training program that emphasizes the development of editing and management skills in frontline editors. Sponsored by the Associated Press Managing Editors, the program receives substantial funding from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.

Workshop location: Minneapolis Star Tribune
425 Portland Avenue
Minneapolis, Minn.

With special thanks to our host, the Star Tribune, and local planners: Brenda Rotherham, news recruiting & training manager at the Star Tribune; Thom Fladung, editor, St. Paul Pioneer Press; Dave Pyle, bureau chief for The Associated Press/Minnesota; Rene Kaluza, day city editor and training editor, St. Cloud Times; Kathleen Hansen, director of the Minnesota Journalism Center at the University of Minnesota's School of Journalism and Mass Communication; Kristin Batson, executive director of the Minnesota Newspaper Foundation, and William Marcil, president/CEO, Forum Communications.

Program note: We randomly divide the group into two teams, Green and Blue. Every editing and management session is offered twice so editors can take each of these segments.

Wednesday, May 24:
10:00 a.m. Registration
Location: Lobby of the Star Tribune
10:30 a.m. Welcome and Introductions
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
11:00 a.m. Coaching Your Writers (Green Team)
Why: The best editing occurs before a single word is written.
Editors need to get involved early, talk about ideas, discuss the likely paths the story could take, the diverse sources that could be contacted. Learn how to ask the right questions; how to have difficult conversations about stories; and how to get writers to be better editors of their own work. Includes a discussion of how editors can make every word count.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski, Knight Chair in Editing, Missouri School of Journalism
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
11:00 a.m. Motivating Your Staff (Blue Team)
Why: Because it underlies all action
Different people are motivated differently. Learn how to tap into what motivates your staff, move them to do their best work and avoid actions that chill creativity. See how to stay motivated in a newsroom environment, and help others to keep striving, too.
Presenter: Kristin Gilger, director of student media, Arizona State University
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor
12:30 p.m. Lunch
Please pick up your lunch in the Civic Dining Room on the 4th floor and return to the Assembly Rooms down the hall.
1:30 p.m. Training: Get on Board
Why: Because news organizations are a business, too
A discussion of why some news organizations are putting more emphasis on professional development of their staffs. Resources you can use to get valuable training for yourself and push for more training for those you lead. Take a virtual tour of a new e-learning site, News University at Poynter.
Presenter: Lillian Swanson, APME NewsTrain project director
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
2:00 p.m. The five-minute editor (Green Team)
Why: On some days, it's all the time you have
Most editors promise themselves that they will have weekly brainstorming meetings on story ideas, frequent coaching sessions on writing techniques and daily post-story critiques to identify and reinforce the lessons learned. Those are worthy goals, but for many editors, the daily grind gets in the way. You do, however, talk to your reporters every day, a minute here, a couple minutes there, five minutes when it's really important. You need to learn to use those few minutes to steer the reporter on a path to learn for himself or herself how to improve. Even if you succeed in making time for longer sessions with reporters, much of your most important editing still is done in these brief daily encounters.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
2:00 p.m. Situational Leadership (Blue Team)
Why: Because one size doesn't fit all
Participants will learn how to "read" a situation and a person and apply the right approach to get the best results. This course teaches different management styles, and the benefits and downsides of each.
Presenter: Kristin Gilger
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor
3:00 p.m. Coffee Break
3:15 p.m. Coaching Your Writers (Blue Team)
Why: The best editing occurs before a single word is written.
Editors need to get involved early, talk about ideas, discuss the likely paths the story could take, the diverse sources that could be contacted. Learn how to ask the right questions; how to have difficult conversations about stories; and how to get writers to be better editors of their own work. Includes a discussion of how editors can make every word count.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
3:15 p.m. Motivating Your Staff (Green Team)
Why: Because it underlies all action
Different people are motivated differently. Learn how to tap into what motivates your staff, move them to do their best work and avoid actions that chill creativity. See how to stay motivated in a newsroom environment, and help others to keep striving, too.
Presenter: Kristin Gilger
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor
4:45 p.m. Coffee Break
5:00 p.m. The five-minute editor (Blue Team)
Why: On some days, it's all the time you have
Most editors promise themselves that they will have weekly brainstorming meetings on story ideas, frequent coaching sessions on writing techniques and daily post-story critiques to identify and reinforce the lessons learned. Those are worthy goals, but for many editors, the daily grind gets in the way. You do, however, talk to your reporters every day, a minute here, a couple minutes there, five minutes when it's really important. You need to learn to use those few minutes to steer the reporter on a path to learn for himself or herself how to improve. Even if you succeed in making time for longer sessions with reporters, much of your most important editing still is done in these brief daily encounters.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
5:00 p.m. Situational Leadership (Green Team)
Why: Because one size doesn't fit all
Participants will learn how to "read" a situation and a person and apply the right approach to get the best results. This course teaches different management styles, and the benefits and downsides of each.
Presenter: Kristin Gilger
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
6:00 p.m. Reception
Why: Because you deserve it!
We want to keep the conversation going. We're providing light appetizers and have arranged for a cash bar.
A shuttle bus will take you to the Radisson hotel. The reception is at the McNamara Alumni Center right across the parking lot.
Location: McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak St. SE

Thursday, May 25:
8:30 a.m. Continental breakfast available
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
9:00 a.m. Welcome back & announcements
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
9:15 a.m. The editing lab (Blue Team) / 2 hours
Architecture of story organization
Why: Because story organization can be difficult
Nearly every successful newspaper story is a variation on one of a few basic story forms. This workshop teaches the essentials of the "martini glass" and "time blocking" structures for hard news and block organization and narrative storytelling structures for daily stories and projects.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor

(While the Blues are in the editing lab, the Green Team goes to the following two segments.)
9:15 a.m. Ethical decision-making (Green Team) / 1 hour
Why: Because you face these dilemmas, often on deadline
How to tell if you are facing an ethical dilemma or simply a difficult choice. This session discusses how to analyze the situation and apply principles that will allow you to come to the right decision. Taught with case studies.
Presenter: Gene Foreman, professor of journalism at Penn State University
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor

-- AND --

Covering the Future / How to find it and report it (Green Team) / 1 hour
Why: Because the country is undergoing historic change
We are in the midst of one of the great stories of our lives - a profound change in who makes up our cities; our suburbs; our state, and our country. Once again, the world has come to America. This great wave of immigrants will have long-term implications for our labor force; schools; the types of industries that will spring up; the kinds of stores that will open; how much we will pay in taxes, and who will pay for our Social Security. A session with plenty of facts, figures and a chance to talk about story ideas.
Presenter: Bobbi Bowman, diversity director, the American Society of Newspaper Editors
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor
11:15 p.m. Secrets of mining FOIA for high-impact stories
Why: Because secrecy in government is getting worse
This session will provide an overview of best practices for effectively using the federal Freedom of Information Act and state open-records laws for daily and beat stories and long-term projects. Among the topics covered will be examples of great stories from FOI requests; scheduling records requests as a routine part of news coverage and a discussion of practical strategies for requesting and negotiating for documents and databases. This module is presented in conjunction with the Investigative Reporters & Editors.
Presenter: Mary Jo Sylwester, CAR editor, St. Paul Pioneer Press
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
12:15 p.m. Lunch
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
1:00 p.m. Digital News for Newspaper Editors: From Shovelware to Innovation Online
Why: Because the future is here
No longer the step-child, online news operations are becoming full partners in the news organization. This session will discuss the fundamental differences in digital from newsprint news and the opportunities for newspaper editors to participate in the creation of new reader experiences online.
Presenter: Nora Paul, Director, Institute for New Media Studies at the University of Minnesota
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
2:30 p.m. Coffee Break
2:45 p.m. The editing lab (Green Team) / 2 hours
Architecture of story organization
Why: Because story organization can be difficult
Nearly every successful newspaper story is a variation on one of a few basic story forms. This workshop teaches the essentials of the "martini glass" and "time blocking" structures for hard news and block organization and narrative storytelling structures for daily stories and projects.
Presenter: Jacqui Banaszynski
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor

(While the Greens are in the editing lab, the Blue Team goes to the following two segments.)
2:45 p.m. Ethical decision-making (Blue Team) / 1 hour
Why: Because you face these dilemmas, often on deadline
How to tell if you are facing an ethical dilemma or simply a difficult choice. This session discusses how to analyze the situation and apply principles that will allow you to come to the right decision. Taught with case studies.
Presenter: Gene Foreman, professor of journalism at Penn State University
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor

-- AND --

Covering the Future / How to find it and report it (Blue Team) / 1 hour
Why: Because the country is undergoing historic change
We are in the midst of one of the great stories of our lives - a profound change in who makes up our cities; our suburbs; our state, and our country. Once again, the world has come to America. This great wave of immigrants will have long-term implications for our labor force; schools; the types of industries that will spring up; the kinds of stores that will open; how much we will pay in taxes, and who will pay for our Social Security. A session with plenty of facts, figures and a chance to talk about story ideas.
Presenter: Bobbi Bowman
Location: The Strib U Room, 4th floor
4:45 p.m. Creating alternative story forms
Why: Because they can boost your readership
As many as 65 percent of your readers spend 20 minutes or less with your paper, as little as three days a week. By taking advantage of different ways of writing and presenting some stories, you can make that time more rewarding for readers and increase the time they spend with the paper. And who doesn't want that?
Presenter: Cory Powell, assistant managing editor for design and readership at the Star Tribune in Minneapolis.
Location: The Assembly Rooms, 4th floor
5:45 p.m. NewsTrain Caboose
Taking the lessons home, feedback forms and goodbye
Presenter: Lillian Swanson
6:00 p.m. Workshop ends

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