Find your Influence and Inspiration at SIPA 2017


Allison Killinger, Co-Editor-in-Chief of The Archive Yearbook, Richland Northeast High School (Columbia, SC)

We live in an age of constant connectivity to the world around us. No matter where we go, we can get notified of trivial things, like when our favorite teams score points in a game or when our favorite bands release a new song. We can see the latest trends in fashion or design to stay up-to-date and modern. Effortlessly, we can get updates about important current events from a wide number of news sites or social media platforms, too, and that’s just scratching the surface.

So, what can we do with all of this?

As a student journalist, we are truly lucky to be able to speak our minds and publicize responses to these things. We have endless possibilities to make our voices heard, and every one of us will express ourselves differently. Some will post opinion videos or reports on YouTube, others will write a post for a blog they have on WordPress or Blogger, and others will respond with a thread of tweets on Twitter. There are many choices in how you can express your ideas, and no matter how you choose to do so, there will be a social media site there to help.

Many teenagers have had viral responses to current events, both visual and written, that have spread across social platforms. However, something doesn’t need to be viral to inspire others, and there are many ways to learn from the work of others, whether their work is well-known or barely known.

Inspiration for our work can come from anything – from seeing an article that moves you to creating a package to seeing a magazine page that inspires your next yearbook spread. News sites or Twitter could easily provide a subject for a story – what are some current events? What is everyone talking about? Pinterest and Tumblr are often gold mines for designers – what fonts stand out? What color schemes or designs could you pull ideas from?

In addition to social media, talking to and learning from experienced individuals in your field can help inspire you and grow your skillset. SIPA is one of the best places for this, and attending a weekend-long convention where you are fully surrounded by like-minded people, both younger and older, can and will greatly help you as a student journalist. Guaranteed.

Be sure to follow SIPA on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Snapchat at @SIPAatUSC to interact with speakers and fellow SIPA goers and share your experience!