students selfie in Times Square

Lashbrook (left) and Simpson in Times Square.

April 6, 2023–Two student journalists from Missouri Western State University attended the College Media Association’s Spring National College Media Convention in New York City last month. Kendra Simpson and Patty Lashbrook presented a session called “Eye-Catching Content: Visual Trends in College Media” at the convention on March 11.

“Through this session, we introduced the concepts of making an award-winning photo or spread noticeable to the average viewer,” said Simpson, a senior convergent journalism and public relations major from St. Joseph and news editor of the Griffon News. “With examples from the 2022 Pinnacle Awards and her own personal experience, Lashbrook delved into the specifics of successful photography and layouts. Following our presentation was a Q&A where we openly discussed issues and resolutions for the college newsroom.”

“This was my first national conference presentation,” said Lashbrook, a freshman convergent journalism and public relations major from Faucett, Missouri and photography editor of the Griffon News. “We had a lot of great feedback from the attendees and a good discussion on design and photography.”

Simpson and Lashbrook also gained a lot from attending other sessions at the convention.

“I learned some fun ways to attract and retain student journalists and get stories from unexpected places, and together we learned how to find our podcast voice,” Lashbrook said, adding that Griffon News is working on developing a podcast for next year. 

Simpson wrote about the convention for the Griffon News.

Missouri Western State University is a student-centered learning community preparing individuals for lives of excellence through applied learning. Missouri Western is located in St. Joseph, Mo., and is committed to the educational, economic, cultural and social development of the region it serves. Visit