About a hundred campus journalists and their advisers from all over the country trooped to Baguio City to take part in the recently-concluded 4th annual extramural training workshop organized by the School Press Advisers Movement (SPAM), Inc.
With the theme “Getting into the Stride of Responsible and Innovative Writing,” the sessions were held from from April 27 to 29, 2017 at the Venus Parkview Hotel in Baguio City. Through the said annual event, SPAM, Inc. aims to provide an intensive training for media and journalism or communication trainers and students, as well as for the campus press and members of student publications. This year, SPAM, Inc. also added this year a special competition on spoken word poetry.
This year’s roster of speakers include Ms Tonette Orejas of Philippine Daily Inquirer for news writing, veteran journalist and author Socorro Vantomme for copyediting, Mark Pere Madrona of The Filipino Scribe (www.FilipinoScribe.com) for online journalism, Mark Joseph Layug for editorial writing, and EV Espiritu for photo journalism.
In her opening remarks, SPAM, Inc. founding president Dr. Melanie Briones stressed that this year’s training workshops will be more intensive and output-based, adding that the literal meaning of extramural is to “go beyond the walls.”
And, as an example of the group’s commitment to promoting responsibity, the online journalism workshop also included a discussion about the alarming proliferation of fake news through social media.
“Trainings like this could be effective in educating the reading and viewing public particularly the so called “netizens” and the “millenials” to be more meticulous and sensitive enough to distinguish between what is evidence-based or factual news to a fake news article,” said Mr. Rendon Coloma, the school paper adviser of Angeles City National Trade School and one of the participants of this year’s extramural.
Madrona for his part thanked Mr. Richard Briones and Dr. Briones, the husband-and-wife team behind SPAM, Inc., for having him again as one of the workshop trainers. “I really love opportunities where I can not only share my knowledge about journalism but meet aspiring campus writers and their advisers as well,” he said.
Participants of this year’s workshop came from different education institutions nationwide including Pangasinan State University, Nueva Ecija University of Science and Technology, System Plus College of Angeles City, and as far as Caraga State University.