EWA Announces Theme of 2018 National Seminar
Los Angeles • May 16–18, 2018

EWA 71st National Seminar Los Angeles graphic

The Education Writers Association is pleased to announce the theme of its 2018 National Seminar: “Room for All? Diversity in Education & the Media.” The conference, slated for May 16-18 at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, will examine the impact of today’s fast-changing demographic and cultural dynamics — from the classroom to the newsroom and beyond.

“This year’s theme opens the door to lots of timely, hot-button topics,” said Greg Toppo, president of EWA’s Board of Directors. “Growing diversity poses new challenges — and opportunities — for both educators and journalists.”

From preschool through college, celebrating differences — treating diversity not as a source of division but of strength — is a popular prescription for improving education and promoting student well-being. Media outlets seeking broader reach and audience engagement likewise profess a commitment to diversity and making room for all.  

Yet at a time when diversity and inclusion have become watchwords in both education and journalism, debates continue about whether either sector is living up to the rhetoric. Education writers face fresh questions about their own perspectives and cultural competencies. And educators at all levels struggle to address the needs of an increasingly diverse student body.  

EWA will explore these issues and more at its flagship annual conference, the largest gathering of education journalists in the nation. While conference sessions will not focus solely on the diversity theme, many of them will — with an eye to helping attendees more thoroughly and accurately cover issues ranging from immigration and integration to free speech, gender identity, and mounting political polarization.

“Educators, students, and reporters often seem caught in the middle between warring visions for addressing the nation’s growing diversity,” said Caroline Hendrie, EWA’s executive director. “We look forward to helping our members better understand and share strategies for thriving in this complicated environment.”   

“At USC, we are committed to a diverse and inclusive community,” said Provost Michael Quick. “We know that our students, faculty, and staff are enriched by an environment that values different perspectives, identities and experiences. This is vital to today’s universities and, indeed, to our democracy as a whole.”

EWA’s National Seminar allows journalists who report on education in all media to step outside their daily duties and build new connections, understanding, and skills. Special features include awards ceremonies honoring the best in education reporting, a track of sessions tailored to communications professionals, and training on digital and data journalism tools. 

Information on registering for the conference is available here