Journalism students present at the Texas Association of Journalism Educators Annual Convention


The staffs of The Fuel and The Rocket pose at the Riverwalk downtown San Antonio. They attended the TAJE Annual Conference, which is held at the Wyndham Riverwalk.

On Saturday, October 19, a few staff members from The Fuel student newspaper went to the Texas Association of Journalism Educators Annual Convention at the Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk to present key strategies they use to promote news on social media. 

The staff presented key points to a successful newspaper program: engagement, being an information source, acknowledgments students, and establishing a unique social media presence. 

“Our slideshow provided information about what we do as an organization and helped explain how the importance of social media is to the community,” sportswriter Thomas Rodriguez said. 

This conference had students and representatives from all over Texas. Being invited to present in front of students with the same mindset as them meant a lot to the student journalists and advisor. 

“We’re at a point where we need to be involved in scholastic journalism at the state level,” publications advisor Mr. Pedro Cabrera said. “It’s important for [journalism students] to network with other students.” 

The students presented how their program is so beneficial to the school and community. The Fuel reaches out to different audiences by using Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook, as well as having the main website, Technology, and utilizing social media, has become vital to the success of a journalism program.

Photo By: Mr. Pedro Cabrera
The Fuel presents at the TAJE Annual Convention. Their focus was social media.

“We have to give teens the information the way they receive it,” Cabrera said. 

The students also highlighted how they broadcast live on Facebook and Twitter. 

“I presented the process of how we live tweet and how we rotate through different sports and games, especially during the play offseason,” Rodrgiuez said. “We live-tweet at games to make sure everyone at home is up to date and can trust us in providing them factual information they are missing.” 

The conference was also Sunday, October 20, but instead of presenting this day, the student journalists had the opportunity to learn from other journalism programs across Texas. There were 45+ sessions all day Sunday for the students to listen in on different ways to work as a staff and individually. 

“I went to a sports broadcasting class,” sports editor Alberto Torres said. “It was interesting to see how other schools take on covering sports like football and basketball. It made me realize that we are right there with other programs in the state because we do a lot of the same things they do.”

The yearbook staff joined the newspaper staff on Sunday to learn from the classes as well. 

“It was a great opportunity for both staffs to get valuable information to better our current publications,” Cabrera said. 

This conference was not only the perfect learning experience but a perfect bonding experience. 

“I got to bond with the yearbook staff more than I ever had,” Torres said. “It was special because they are journalists as much as we are and cover the school as much as we do.” 

Attending this conference made the staff realize how much of an impact they have already made on the journalism community. 

“Not only is it humbling knowing that people from all over the state know who we are, but it’s also a great way for us to be better and continue to produce great work,” Cabrera said. 

The student journalists took a lot from the conference, and plan to go to more.

“As this program continues to grow, the opportunities will become endless, from state conventions to national conventions,” Cabrera said. 

Exposing the young student journalists to massive conventions such as the TAJE teaches them how important it is to make connections. The students not only make friends at these conferences but also get to meet well-respected adults to learn from. This opportunity was great for the newspaper and yearbook staff and they only look forward to more.