Print Page | Contact Us | Your Cart | Sign In | Register
Rochester NewsTrain
Share |

Train in data, video, social, mobile, podcasting and more at Rochester NewsTrain on Sept. 24-25, 2021


The Particulars

When: 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Friday, Sept. 24, and 9 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 25, 2021

Where: RIT Inn & Conference Center, 5257 W. Henrietta Rd, Henrietta, New York

CostEarly-bird registration is just $75. The early-bird rate ends Aug. 24, 2021, with registration increasing to $85 on Aug. 25, 2021.

Meals: Your registration includes a light breakfast and lunch each day.

Is this workshop for you? This workshop is for reporters, editors and other journalists from print, digital and broadcast newsrooms of all sizes, as well as journalism educators and students. Public information officers and public relations specialists have also benefited from attending NewsTrain. You do not have to be a member of APME or the News Leaders Association to attend.

Diversity scholarships: The deadline to apply for a competitive diversity scholarship for Rochester NewsTrain is Aug. 11, 2021. Applications are open to journalists, journalism educators or journalism students from a diverse background, Successful applicants have their registration fee waived; they must pay their own travel expenses. Apply online; also, email a current résumé and up to three work samples (published or unpublished) to Karen Magnuson. Journalism educators need not submit work samples.

Travel scholarships for Chips Quinn Scholars alumni: The Freedom Forum Institute offers travel scholarships to Chips Quinn Scholars alumni who are working as journalists or teaching journalism full-time and who are interested in attending NewsTrain. The scholarship will cover up to $1,000 for travel expenses. Interested alums, who are asked to submit a piece about their workshop experience for the Chips Quinn Scholars website, should email Karen Catone, director of the Chips Quinn Scholars Program. They should also apply for a diversity scholarship to cover registration, funded by the APME Foundation, here.

Registration for groups: Email Laura Sellers-Earl, NewsTrain project co-director.

What to bring: A fully charged laptop and smartphone for the exercises.

Parking: Free

Lodging: A discounted rate of $109 a night, plus tax, will be available at the RIT Inn & Conference Center, where the workshop is being held. To reserve, call 585-359-1800 by Sept. 3, 2021, and reference APME's NewsTrain.

Airport transportation: Call 585 359-1800 between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. daily for the complimentary shuttle van for the RIT Inn & Conference Center. Other options are on the airport's website.

Local donors: Democrat and Chronicle

Sponsor: Associated Press Media Editors (APME) Foundation. Please see the complete list of donors who support NewsTrain at the bottom of this page.

Hosts: Representatives from the following local organizations are serving on the host committee for Rochester NewsTrain: Democrat and Chronicle, USA Today Network, WXXI public television, Rochester Institute of Technology, St. John Fisher College, SUNY's College at Brockport, The Associated Press.

Questions: Email Linda Austin, or Laura Sellers-Earl, NewsTrain project co-directors.

Join us for two full days of affordable digital training at Rochester NewsTrain on Sept. 24-25, 2021, at the RIT Inn & Conference Center in Henrietta, New York.

Training Sessions Include:

  • Developing a data mindset to improve stories every day,
  • Shooting and editing smarter video on your smartphone,
  • Using social media as powerful reporting tools,
  • Maximizing Instagram Stories to build your brand and reach new audiences,
  • Storytelling on small screens: making smart choices for mobile audiences,
  • So, you think you have an idea for a podcast?
  • Following demographic "fault lines" to improve accuracy and build trust, and
  • The power of listening: what journalists can learn from community organizers.

Early-bird registration is $75 through Aug. 24, 2021; the rate increases to $85 on Aug. 25, 2021.

For Rochester NewsTrain, competitive diversity scholarships are available for journalists, journalism students and journalism educators from diverse backgrounds; please see the information to the right for how to apply by Aug. 11, 2021. 

Your Trainers

Stay tuned please. We will be announcing the accomplished journalists who will be your trainers for Rochester NewsTrain.

You Will Learn How To:

  • Identify five ways to find relevant databases and formulate questions to identify stories in the data. Leave with at least one story idea using data that you can do now.
  • Shoot and edit short news videos on your smartphone.
  • Use social media to locate diverse expert and “real people” sources, listen to your community and identify news stories, crowdsource using Google Forms and call-outs, and create a social dossier on a person in the news.
  • Identify best practices for Instagram Stories to build your brand and attract new audiences.
  • Make smart choices among alternative ways to tell a story on mobile to get the maximum audience impact with the least expenditure of time, energy and effort.
  • Identify a good idea for a podcast and develop that idea into a podcast pitch.
  • Identify the five demographic “fault lines” that the Maynard Institute says drive social tensions: generation, race and ethnicity, class, geography, and gender and sexual orientation. Use those fault lines to brainstorm story ideas that better reflect your community.
  • Use the techniques of community organizers, including listening, to build trust in communities and give voice to underrepresented voices.




The blue and green tracks on the agenda allow for smaller class sizes. All attendees receive the same instruction, just at different times.



Session Specifics


Developing a data mindset to improve stories every day For providing context for breaking news or developing enterprise stories off your beat, databases are your friend. Learn how to develop a data state of mind, find newsworthy data and begin to analyze data sets. Spot the enterprise stories in the numbers, whether your beat is breaking news, sports, health, business, education, local government or cops and courts. Bring your laptop for the exercises. No previous data experience is required.


Shooting smarter video on your smartphone Columbia’s Tow Center for Digital Journalism studied what makes for successful news video and recommended that reporters shoot fast, raw clips posted instantly from the field, leaving in-depth, more sophisticated video stories to highly trained video journalists. This session teaches reporters how to produce those clips of under one minute with minimal editing. Learn how to use a tripod and external microphone and sequence your best five shots to create shareable video – without getting in the way of your reporting. Bring your smartphone for the exercises. 


Editing smarter video on your smartphone Learn how to use an app on your smartphone to edit video clips into a news story of one minute or less. Use a storyboard to sequence shots. Learn to splice, delete and connect clips. Create lower-thirds to identify speakers. 


Using social media as powerful reporting tools Social media can be used as powerful reporting tools, whether you're facing a big breaking news story or an enterprise project. This session explains how to use social media platforms and complementary websites to locate diverse expert and “real people” sources, listen to your community and identify news stories, crowdsource using Google Forms and callouts, and create a social dossier on a person in the news.


Maximizing Instagram Stories to build your brand and attract new audiences Since the introduction of Instagram Stories in 2016, its use has exploded to 500 million active daily users. Posting sequences of videos and images  ̶  often containing text, gifs and music  ̶  that disappear after 24 hours has proven addictive. Smart brands and influencers are using Instagram Stories to reach new audiences. Learn how you can put Instagram Stories to work in your newsroom to build your brand and connect with new users.


Storytelling on small screens: making smart choices for mobile audiences More than eight in 10 U.S. adults now get news on a mobile device. We need a new storytelling tool kit to attract and better serve our audience on mobile. On a small screen, what’s the best way to tell a particular story: digest, explainer, bulleted live updates or what-we-know lists, photo, video, graphic, audio, games, curation, or some combination? And what are the tools to make that happen as efficiently as possible? How is writing for mobile scanners different? The good news is that mobile-storytelling techniques also translate well to other digital platforms, and some text-based strategies also work in print.


So, you think you have an idea for a podcastPodcasts open the door to telling new stories and reaching new audiences — if you do them well. But what are the conversations that need to happen before going forward, and what’s the balance between innovative podcast storytelling and the investment needed in time, expertise and money. This session identifies the kinds of ideas that make for the best podcasts and establishes the minimum requirements for success. What are the table stakes – besides a good idea – to get into the game?  Bring an idea that you think would make a good podcast and prepare to develop it into a pitch.


Following demographic "fault lines" to improve accuracy and build trust The U.S. population is expected to become older and more racially and ethnically diverse in coming years. How can journalists be better prepared to build trust and connect with those growing communities? The Maynard Institute offers a way of viewing society along five demographic “fault lines” that can be a useful tool to ensure more representative and accurate coverage.


The power of listening: what journalists can learn from community organizers “Organizing is fundamentally about listening to people tell you what they need and what kind of world they want, and working collaboratively to make it happen. The principles and practices organizers use can be powerful tools when adapted to the newsroom, but it’s an approach most journalists aren’t familiar with,” according to Free Press’ New Voices project. Learn how to strengthen reporting and build relationships by employing listening and other techniques of community organizers.


Our Donors

NewsTrain's recent donors include The Associated PressThe APME Foundation, the Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation, GateHouse Media LLC, the Park, Gannett and Sigma Delta Chi foundations and APME past and present board members. To join them in supporting NewsTrain, please make your tax-deductible contribution here

1040 P Street
Lincoln, Nebraska

·         Newspapers Canada

·         Atlantic Journalism Awards

·         Canadian Association of Journalists

·         Brunswick News

·         TC Media

·         University of King’s College School of Journalism

·         Newspapers Atlantic

Associated Press Media Editors

APME is a professional network, a resource for helping editors and broadcasters improve their news coverage and newsroom operations.

Quick Links

Home About News Events