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USM to host 2020 Southeast Journalism Conference Feb. 13-15

Thu, 01/30/2020 - 15:35pm | By: David Tisdale

SEJC 2020 Feb. 13-15The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) School of Communication will host the 2020 Southeast Journalism Conference (SEJC) Feb. 13-15 on its Hattiesburg campus.

The SEJC was founded in the mid-1980s with the goals of encouraging greater interest in student journalism and creating closer ties among journalism schools in the Southeast United States. The conference annually hosts about 300 students from 30 colleges and universities in Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Florida, with the work of student journalists recognized for excellence in various categories. USM last hosted the conference in 1992.

The theme for this year’s event is "SEJC 2020 - Our Vision, Your Voice"

"We are pleased and excited to host the Southeast Journalism Conference once again on our campus," said Chuck Cook, 2020 president of the Southeast Journalism Conference and the News Content Adviser for the Student Media Center in the USM School of Communication.

"Our faculty and students are working to put on the best conference possible for all the journalism students and faculty attending. We will lean on our large and talented alumni base to create educational and engaging sessions. It's truly an honor to host this event and be a part of the growth of these students."

The keynote speaker at the event’s "Best of the South" awards banquet on Friday, Feb. 14 will be Ted Jackson, two-time Pulitzer winner and longtime journalist from the New Orleans Times-Picayune. The Saturday, Feb. 15 morning keynote will be Cathy Straight, executive editor of national news for CNN Digital. Both Jackson and Straight are Southern Miss alums and members of USM’s Mass Communication and Journalism Hall of Fame.

Some conference attendees will take part in an on-site competition where they will write, photograph and make television news packages about the people and places on campus and in the community.

"We look forward to showing off our beautiful campus and some of the unique characters in our community," Cook said.

For information about the USM School of Communication, visit For information about the Southeast Journalism conference, visit For more information about the 2020 SEJC, contact Cook at chuck.cookFREEMississippi.