BYU-Idaho’s new Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) had their first meeting on April 2 in the George S. Romney Building.

Katia Brown, a BYU-I student, is the society’s current president. Brown remarked on what would be included in joining the society.

“You don’t have to pay, it’s a free membership,” Brown said. “We promote Scroll, we’re part of Scroll. We’ll have society events throughout the semester. Hopefully next semester, there’ll be three, that’s the goal.”

Tuesday’s meeting included a panel of five BYU-I alumni who have pursued careers in the communication and journalism industries.

Students chat with professionals in the journalism world

Students chat with professionals in the journalism and communication fields. Photo credit: Mattie Johnson

Brown said that to join the official SPJ chapter, students pay a fee and will receive perks such as trainings and webinars.

“Their goal is just to promote good ethical journalism,” Brown said. “And part of that mission is to provide resources, whether it’s webinars, trainings from people who have been in the industry forever, trainings from award winning journalists, different things like that. They offer those resources to society members. So to be a society member of SPJ, you have to sign up and pay $40. ”

For updates for future meetings students can check I-Belong.

Brown said the society is great for anyone who is interested in writing or becoming a published writer.

“There’s nothing required to be a member, just jump on I-Belong,” Brown said. “There are cool things once you’re a member, you can submit your writing to the society president and then it’ll go through a really simple vetting process, then hopefully, if it’s approved, it’ll be published in the Scroll.”

Students visit after first SPJ meeting

Students visit after first SPJ meeting. Photo credit: Mattie Johnson

Brown said students can even publish essays they are proud of and can showcase their knowledge on topics for resumes.

“If you write an essay on anything for a class you can submit it to be published,” Brown said. “And that gives you a cool cloud you know, you can put that on your resume, ‘published author’ and and kind of showcase that as some of your work.”

BYU-I is now an official chapter of SPJ. Students can join the official chapter through the SPJ website or I-Belong.