Redefining the 1st Amendment

Ashley Gordon

The CSUN student chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) will hold its 18th annual Kenneth S. Devol First Amendment Forum May 5 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the University Student Union’s Balboa Room.

The event, titled ‘Endangered Species: College Media as Campus Watchdogs in the Digital Age,’ will focus on the various First Amendment issues facing campus media as storytelling changes with the advancement of technology.

‘As a student chapter of a nationally recognized journalism organization, we feel as if it’s our duty to not only educate journalism students but non-journalism students about First Amendment issues that affect them on a daily basis,’ said CSUN SPJ Chapter President Eileen Mansoorian.

Southern California student newspaper leaders will discuss topics such as a campus news outlets ability to fulfill its first amendment responsibilities in the shift to online publication and the watchdog function of publications during a decrease in student readership.

Confirmed panelists include Daily Sundial Editor in Chief Chelsea Cody, Cindy Von Quednow the Editor in Chief of El Nuevo Sol and Melissa Meek, the features editor for Pierce College’s Roundup Newspaper.

The forum, named after educator Kenneth S. Devol, seeks to open discussion on a current First Amendment issue affecting news organizations ability to report fair, balanced and objective information.

Devol, a former professor of journalism at CSUN and an author of two journalism textbooks, studied journalism law and ethics and shared his knowledge and passion of the role law plays in media with students for 30 years. He died in 1997 at 68.

Snacks and beverages will be provided for attendees of the two-hour discussion.