Palestinian war correspondent to keynote national conference on campus

More than 150 educators, students and professionals are expected to attend the 2006 Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) Midwinter Conference Friday-Sunday (Feb. 24-26) in the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.

Highlighting the event will be sessions on war correspondence, community journalism and media convergence.

Palestinian journalist Nadia Bilbassy Charters, senior correspondent in the Washington bureau of Al-Arabiya satellite TV channel, is the keynote speaker. She previously worked for MBC TV, an Arabic television network; the BBC Arabic Service and Agence France Press as a correspondent based in Jerusalem. She will discuss "Covering Wars in the Middle East and Turmoils in Africa" at a Saturday noon luncheon in 228 Union.

The first plenary session, scheduled at 6:30 p.m. Friday in 202B Union, will focus on "The Emerging Mind of Community Journalism." Panelists will include Chris Waddle, the Knight Community Journalism Fellow at the University of Alabama; Al Cross, director of the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues at the University of Kentucky; Lou Hebert, assistant news director at WTOL-TV in Toledo; Jan Larson, Wood County editor at the Sentinel-Tribune in Bowling Green; George Daniels of the University of Alabama, and Gracie Lawson-Borders of Kent State University. Dr. Catherine Cassara, journalism, will moderate.

The second plenary session, at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in 228 Union, will examine the issues of media convergence and media management using the Block Communication Group, a privately owned media conglomerate, as a case study.

The executives taking part, all from northwest Ohio, include Chip Carstensen, president and general manager of Buckeye CableSystem; Kurt Franck, managing editor of The Blade; Joseph Zerbey IV, vice president and general manager of The Blade, and John Martin, vice president for sales at Buckeye CableSystem. Dr. Louisa Ha, telecommunications, will serve as moderator.

AEJMC, the oldest and largest national organization of journalism and mass communication educators, students and media professionals, has some 3,500 members around the world.

Hosted by the School of Communication Studies, the conference is a forum for research presentations relevant to the nine AEJMC divisions: communication technology, communication theory and methodology, critical and cultural studies, entertainment studies, graduate education, international communication, mass communication and society, media management and economics, and visual communication. 

An additional 32 concurrent paper or panel sessions are planned during the conference. From a record high number of submissions, 116 papers and three panels were refereed and accepted for presentations. Representatives of 49 colleges and universities across the country and abroad are expected to take part, including 25 presenters from BGSU.

Conference information and registration details can be found on the conference Web page at For more information, contact Ha at or 2-9103.
February 20, 2006