Sparrow on SND: Students come away energized and inspired

The Society for News Design is in the middle of a membership drive and has asked some of its members to explain SND’s importance to them or their career. Today, we feature ….


Ryan Sparrow
Instructor of Journalism
Ball State University

“I didn’t get involved with SND until I started teaching at Ball State, but in the 10 years that I’ve been a faculty advisor and member, I’ve seen it work magic for students. It exposes them to a world and career tracks that many of them never knew about. It has helped them (and me!) network and find contacts that last a lifetime.

I’ve been a member of other professional journalism organizations and have gone to many conferences, but I always tell my students that SND conferences are like no other. Members know how to treat students! They don’t talk down to them, they listen to them and allow them to be part of a larger group and, best of all, they take the time to go over and critique portfolios with such care and attention to detail. In other professional organizations, the egos of the superstars create such a competitive culture that critiques can be hard — and sometimes humiliating — for students, but SND members can look at a portfolio and understand exactly what that particular student needs to do to improve, whether they are at an advanced level or clearly just getting started. The students come away energized and excited!”

If you feel the same way about SND, please consider joining or renewing your membership today. It’s easy. Just follow this link:

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