Updated: Nov 17
Several SPOA members traveled to Boston, Massachusetts, the first week of November for the National High School Journalism Convention.
One benefit to being a member of SPOA is being represented to schools all across the nation. "Traditionally in the past, outside of one national company these conferences at the state or local level haven't been attended by school photographers. By the trade association having a national presence, it allows local photographers who may not be able to attend theses conferences or conventions due to scheduling or financial reasons the ability to be present and in front of their customers or potential schools by having the trade association there working on their behalf," said David Crandall, SPOA's executive director.
Thousands of high school students and yearbook advisers from all over the country were in attendance. The convention boasts hundreds of instructional sessions, from yearbook trends and technology to skill sets and software.
David Crandall led two round table discussions with yearbook advisers focusing on best practices in journalism, photography, sales, and participation. One of the goals was to gain firsthand insight from consumers on what they are looking for in the industry and how SPOA can partner with schools to preserve the future of school photography.
SPOA members Hayes Davis and Nic Davidson also represented the industry, teaching six photography sessions throughout the convention: The 5 Lighting Patterns, Studio Anywhere, Sports Candids, Student Life & Superlatives, Landscape Photography, and Advanced Photography. These sessions were attended by high school students and advisers of some of the nation's top journalism programs.
"It was a privilege and honor to engage in three days of teaching and conversations with the future of photography during the JEA/NSPA conference," said Hayes Davis, of Leonard's Photography.
Nic Davidson, of Strawbridge Studios, said this about his time in Boston, "This was my frist time attending JEA/NSPA and I was blown away by the event. To see so many young people engaged in photography and journalism, which is how I began my career, was inspiring and energizing! I wish there were opportunities like this when I was on yearbook staff in high school."
Overall the convention was a huge success for both the students and advisers that attended and the SPOA representatives that were able to represent all of our company members.
We share our "Find a School Photographer" database with all attendees at these conferences, both in conversation and in the materials we hand out. A member company may be contacted by a school in their area looking for a photographer after attending a conference and visiting our site so these conventions are just another way SPOA is working for school photography and yearbook companies.