On to the ‘real’ South at ACP/CMA NOLA 2013

By Mary Kate Brogan

Ever since I came to Elon, I’ve told people I go to school in the South. It’s a pretty southern school compared to the Big Ten schools my classmates attended. But one of my close friends went to the true South. To Tulane. To New Orleans. A place filled with such an impressive array of culture that it easily rivals even the most diverse northern cities. New Orleans, she told me, was the real South, and I could not be more excited to be visiting it for the first time.

According to my straw poll of the six people I talked to about New Orleans who have visited it, New Orleans is an incredible city, and I should prepare myself for a lovely and lively couple of days.

The NCCMA Convention in 2012 - my first journalism conference. Ah, the memories.

The NCCMA Convention in 2012 – my first journalism conference. Ah, the memories. Photo by Caitlin O’Donnell.

But what’s more important than the culture of the city (for me, anyway) is the culture of the ACP/CMA Convention. Conventions are just my cuppa tea (as I’m sure you can see from the CMA Convention posts from March). I love learning, which is part of the reason I’m a journalist – you learn something new every day. What I love about conventions is that you’re learning every single minute about something that you care about. That could not make me more ecstatic.

My love of conventions makes me sound like much more of a nerd than I intend it to, but I’ll own it: I’m a nerd. A journalism nerd, a culture nerd, a convention nerd, a nerd extraordinaire, if you will. I’ve been going to conferences since my freshman year of high school (granted, they were Latin conventions but conventions nonetheless) and they almost never get old. But it’s conventions like ACP/CMA Convention that I adore the most – conventions where entire sessions are devoted to typography or multimedia storytelling, gaining a greater social media following or how to be a better editor, etc.

Conventions like this have a sensational air about them. You can feel the energy as journalists, young and old, converge, connect and talk about the future of the industry. It’s astounding how much one can learn in just a few days. The culture of a convention like ACP/CMA is one focused on forwarding the industry and fueling change, and I am certain ACP/CMA will do both this coming weekend.

So while it may just be for a couple of days, I’m excited to soak up the culture of the real South and the culture of journalism at the 2013 NOLA ACP/CMA Convention.

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