The Student Publication Association (SPA) is the largest student media association, representing student newspapers, magazines and websites across the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland.
As a charity registered in January 2020 (No: 1187383) , we aim to support, train and showcase the work of student journalists on a regional and national platform.
We have grown consistently since our formation at the University of Southampton in 2012, and now represent over 125 student publications and nearly 500 individual members.
As well as a plethora of training resources and advocacy support, we also host regular events, celebrating the work of our members and giving them an opportunity to network with other student journalists and industry professionals.
Our work is led by our Executive Committee, alongside teams of Regional and Project Officers, while we also have a Trustee Board supporting the governance of the charity, ensuring we fulfil our purpose.
The highlight of our year is the annual SPA National Conference (SPANC), which features talks and workshops from national journalists in a range of fields, giving advice and helping our members develop skills. Our National Conference is usually held in partnership with a member publication, although due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SPANC20 was our first ever online conference, and our biggest yet, with 450 attendees.
We also run a prestigious National Awards ceremony at SPANC, with 20 categories, giving recognition to our members in collaboration with corporate sponsors.
SPANC also plays host to our Annual General Meeting, which elects our Executive Committee and a Trustee every year as well as helping to decide the direction of the charity.
Our National Conference is supplemented each year by a programme of regional equivalents, in each of the organisation’s eight regions: Ireland (encompassing both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland), London, the Midlands, the North, Scotland, South East England, South West England and Wales.
We also run a mentorship scheme, pairing student journalists with professional journalists in order to provide networking opportunities and worthwhile advice to equip our members with the best possible help as they develop as student journalists, and budding industry professionals.
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