CJA spring networking event attracts college students

‘Associate Board key to our future’: Rafalson

The Chicago Journalists Association hosted its first networking event for college students and recent graduates Friday, April 17, at the Rock Bottom Restaurant and Brewery, Grand and State Streets.

Associate board chairperson Stephanie Choporis (R) with recent college graduate and freelance reporter Allison Matyus.

CJA’S newly-created associate board organized the event, which featured the following guest journalists: former Sun-Times columnist Dave Hoekstra (WGN), Megan Graham (Chicago Tribune), Rummana Hussain (Sun-Times), Charlie Meyerson (Rivet Radio) and David Jackson (Chicago Tribune).

“I’m pleased on how everything came together,” said associate board chairperson Stephanie Choporis. “We wanted to offer students a way to connect with journalists in a relaxed setting and learn from their experiences.”

The evening consisted of mingling and a panel discussion with the journalists, who shared a range of tips from finding their first jobs after graduation, to adjusting writing styles for different media platforms and handling job rejections.

Students listen to comments from Chicago-area journalists during Q & A session.

CJA president Allen Rafalson urged the students to join the associate board and told them “they are the key to the future of our 76-year-old organization.”

Choporis, who was promoted to the CJA board of directors last year, said she hopes to host a similar event later this year.

The associate board currently consists of 11 journalism students and recent graduates representing the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, DePaul University, Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, and Augustana College. Membership is free. For further information how you can join, please contact stephanie@chicagocja.wpcomstaging.com.

L to R: CJA president Allen Rafalson with Rivet Radio personality Charlie Meyerson and Tribune reporter David Jackson.

CJA has scheduled its annual dinner at the Crowne Plaza hotel, Halsted and Madison Streets, Friday evening, October 16. Chicago-area journalists will be recognized for their respective work in various categories. Special honors are to be presented to Chicago Tribune Editorial Page Editor R. Bruce Dold (Lifetime Achievement) and AP reporter Sharon Cohen (Chicago Journalist of the Year). Japanese combat correspondent Kenji Goto is to be recipient of the 13th annual Daniel Pearl Award posthumously. 

Dinner discount price for a college student is $75. Call our Hot Line for further information (312) 458-9792.