Click here for a detailed schedule of workshops.

Navigating Conflict: Nuanced International Reporting for a Divided Domestic Audience

Jayson Casper | Middle East Correspondent, Christianity Today

Two challenges face US coverage of geopolitical issues and the global church: How can we discover the distant reality, and how will it be received by our core constituency? Whether our audience is distracted, concerned, or polarized, this workshop will help media professionals obtain facts and perspectives from international sources and convey them for the education of our community in appreciation of the diverse worldwide body of Christ.

What you will learn:

• A biblical perspective on international reporting
• How to find the right sources to speak with
• How to weave together conflicting opinions

Has Your Brainstorming Been a Bit Cloudy?

Ron Hunter, Jr. | CEO, D6 Family

Get out of the ruts of the same old thinking. Explore various brainstorming techniques that will help you vet, evaluate, and shape ideas, programs, and products. Participate in practical exercises using the tools being taught. Walk away with immediate tools to help your team.

Impactful Engagement on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn

Jason Goff | Social Media Consultant

In today’s digital age, creating meaningful engagement on social media is both an art and a science. This workshop is designed to unlock the secrets of engaging your audience across the most influential platforms: Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn. 

You will learn:

• How to create content that resonates with your audience, tailored to the unique strengths and user expectations of each platform

• How to gain an understanding of the algorithms that power Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn and learn how to work with them to maximize your content’s reach and engagement

• How to use images, videos, and stories to tell compelling stories that drive engagement and foster a deeper connection with your followers

Collaboration Skills for Writers, Photographers, and Editors

Darrell Goemaat | Director of Photography, Baptist Bulletin
Kevin Mungons | Developmental Editor, Moody Publishers

Somewhere along the line our collaborative skills eroded, and we didn’t notice. Maybe it was budget cuts, COVID closures, or even turf wars. Or perhaps we’d rather do it all ourselves. As a result, we’ve become less productive, and the quality of our work may be slipping in subtle ways. Let’s fix it before anyone else notices, by renewing our working relationships between writer, photographer, and editor. Revisit and remember the essential strategies for working together—before, during, and after a story assignment. Learn essential talking points to address common objections (it’s more expensive, time-consuming, inefficient). Become your organization’s collaborative cheerleader to put teamwork back into your creative team.

What you will learn:

• How to maximize the impact of your feature stories
• How to recapture the lost art of creative collaboration

Freelancing: Better & Beyond

Ann-Margret Hovsepian | Writer and Illustrator
Ann Byle | Freelance Writer/Author

Led by two seasoned writers, each with more than 25 years in their respective freelance careers, this session will address two aspects of freelancing: Better Productivity and Beyond Publication. Learn tips on managing your time, ideas, and projects efficiently to improve your productivity, plus gain strategies for getting the most mileage and income from your freelance work.

Closing the Gap: Communicating Words and Visuals with Inclusivity

Kristy Glaspie | Editor-in-Chief, World Vision Magazine

How do we eliminate words and images that subconsciously—or consciously, in some cases—create an “us vs. them” mindset that places our work and goals in a position of a savior or rescuer mentality? How do we avoid that language and how do we communicate each person’s dignity through words and photo selections? Learn how to use inclusive language and respectful photography to ensure you’re assigning dignity to every person who is created in God’s image.

The Quote: Getting It and Using It

Diane McDougall | McDougall Editorial

Every nonfiction article can be beefed up with strong quotes — whether obtained from interviews or from published sources. In this workshop, you’ll learn some basic tips for stronger interviews and explore the dos and don’ts of using your quotes well.

Stories from the Frontlines

Julia Bicknell, British Journalist

British journalist Julia Bicknell has reported on landmine clearance in the fields of Afghanistan, on Christians living in a cemetery, floods and riots, and has interviewed former Pakistan Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto—all part of her work for the BBC and Daily Telegraph. You may have heard her report the news on an NPR affiliate. In the immediate aftermath of 9/11, the BBC flew her into Washington to produce a news feature on the impact of the attacks on the American psyche.  Julia has trained and mentored hundreds of journalists globally for the BBC Academy, Thomson Foundation and the Telegraph Media Group. She will share how foreign news reporting has changed over the course of her career and discuss how journalists today can best tackle misinformation, disinformation and mal-information in this election year for both the UK and the US.

What you will learn:

• Insights into how a foreign correspondent’s work has had to evolve over the years, and how some of the old disciplines still hold true today
• Insights into the global Church under pressure for its faith, and how its people can teach us resilience and courage.
• How we as writers, editors and managers can inspire and encourage the next generation of truth-tellers

Anatomy of a Brand Refresh

Kraig McNutt | Editor-in-Chief, DTS Magazine
Neil Coulter | Editor and Senior Writer, DTS Magazine
Jason Fox | Creative Director, DTS Magazine
Stephanie Johnson | Lead Designer, DTS Magazine

Dallas Theological Seminary’s DTS Magazine recently concluded a year-long makeover that refreshed the brand, redesigned the magazine, and completely overhauled the internal processes for producing the magazine. As a reward, their first issue of the new design, launched in summer 2022, won several awards from EPA, including Awards of Merit in the Higher Ed and Most Improved categories. Learn how they did it from their staff in this panel discussion.

What you will learn:

• The key components to consider when doing a brand refresh (for a print magazine)
• Keys to working effectively with an outside agency in the brand refresh process
• How to go through this process, make massive internal process changes, and not lose your mind

Altering Reality? How Technology is Shaping Our Perception of Truth

Jason Thacker | Assistant Professor, Boyce College

Whether it is the challenges of generative AI or social media, the very nature of truth itself seems to be up for debate in our digital age. In a day where many decry something as ‘fake news’ or blatantly false because they simply don’t like it, how do we as Christian communicators navigate these challenges in light of the Christian worldview? In this workshop, you will learn about some of the major challenges we face in the communications field today with the rise of these powerful technologies as well as some ways to practically model speaking uncompromised truth and modeling uncompromised grace.

What you will learn:

• Knowledge of the landscape of challenges we face today and some best practices to communicate effectively in a technological age.

The Perfect Interview Doesn’t Exist…But That Won’t Stop Us From Trying!

David T. Jones | Senior Editor, D6 Family

Whether it’s over Zoom or face to face, for a magazine or for a podcast, interviews are an integral part of what writers and editors do. Even so, the task can sometimes seem daunting and intimidating. In this workshop, we’ll examine how to prepare for an interview so you can maximize your opportunity, and we’ll also explore practical and helpful tips to remember while in the middle of your conversation.

What you will learn:

• The importance of vetting interviewees
• How to maximize prep time
• How to develop solid questions
• How to eliminate distractions

Rediscovering Wonder

Jim Killam | Managing Editor, Wycliffe Global Alliance

The best writers, photographers and videographers see the world … differently. They carry supreme senses of curiosity and wonder. They notice details, surprises, story angles that others might miss. A seemingly insignificant moment or mundane detail might provide the means to communicate something deeper. Rather than risk losing that sense of wonder as we get older, how do we continue to sharpen it?

What you will learn:

• Inspiration for seeing familiar sights with fresh eyes
• Ideas on how to cultivate and grow your senses of curiosity and wonder, then use them to communicate remarkably

Ten Rules of Successful Freelancers

Tez Brooks | Writing Coach, Author

Learn what you must do to become an organized and sought-after freelancer.

Live with Intentional Purpose

Seana Scott | Content Creator, Well Soul Life

Our careers, personal life, and ministry endeavors sometimes leave us surviving rather than thriving. Join Seana Scott, EPA award-winning writer, seminary graduate, and founder of Well Soul Life as she unpacks a helpful process of discernment and life planning for every Christian creative to live with intentional purpose—and a well soul.

One-Page Wonder: Making the Most of 500 Words (or less)

Eric K. Thomsen | Managing Editor, ONE Magazine

Few things are more challenging than a short word count. So, take the challenge! Together, we will explore ways to capture attention, drive the point home, provide takeaways with value, and leave your readers anticipating your next article or column.

What you will learn:

• How to write great lead-ins
• How to develop a strategy for writing short pieces
• Tips for writing with brevity
• How to write (and share) great stories on a “word budget”

Magazine Editing 101

Sandra Glahn | Professor of Media Arts & Worship, Dallas Theological Seminary

New to magazine editing? This one’s for you. What three types of edits should you prioritize? What style manual will you use? What’s the most-broken rule for cutlines? How do you trim a 1,500-word piece down to 1,000 ? Will you use sidebars? How do you select pull quotes? How do you draw people into the content? What needs to change when taking articles from print to web? This crash course will give you the basics.

What you will learn:

• Three types of edits to prioritize
• How to trim content that’s too long
• How to use pull quotes effectively
• The difference between print content and web content

A Biblical Worldview of Media Liability Risk

David A. Jones | Senior Vice President, Lockton Ministries

In an age when publishers, broadcasters, and writers could become sudden and significant targets of lawsuits, it is prudent to understand press liability and how to de-risk your exposure in the current marketplace and if risk-transfer insurance is appropriate. Learn the biblical position of this environment, where the exposure can originate, and how to manage going forward. Learn what it means to be a follower of Christ when managing press liability. With exponential decay in publishing truth and further deterioration in publishing with a biblical worldview, you will learn how to not compromise but stand firm for the Truth. Learn how to serve your industry and biblically manage these risks.

Where’s the ‘So What’ in Covering a Revival?

Michael Longinow, moderator | Professor of Journalism & Integrated Media, Biola University
Phil Pendleton | Broadcast Journalist, WKYT-TV Lexington
Lucy Bryson | Broadcast Journalist, WKYT-TV Lexington
Thomas Lyons | Seminary Professor, Northern Seminary; Writer for The Atlantic

This panel of news professionals features reporters who were either assigned to, or opted into, coverage of the events at Asbury University that became news all across the U.S. and in other countries. Come hear their perspectives on the news value on mainstream media platforms for this singularly spiritual moment on a Christian university campus.

Building on Sand or Rock: Unveiling the Differences Between Secular and Christian AI

Chase Cappo | Co-Founder & Chief Bible Officer, and
Thomas Osborn | Founder, DiscipleIQ

This breakout session is designed for those seeking insight into the distinctions between Christian AI and secular AI. This presentation and discussion will focus on generative textual based AI and the ethical, moral, and theological considerations that shape the development and deployment of artificial intelligence within a Christian context. Attendees will gain a deeper understanding of how faith-driven values influence the creation of AI algorithms, exploring the impact on content, decision-making, and ethical boundaries.

What you will learn:

• Insight Framework for discerning the difference between secular AI in a Christian wrapper, and authentic Christian AI
• Explore real anonymous conversations of people who had conversations with AI and the difference
• Understanding of how conversational generative AI can be and the consequences of relying on secular AI

Unlocking Wisdom: Crafting Ethical AI Policy for Your Ministry

Chase Cappo | Co-Founder & Chief Bible Officer, and
Thomas Osborn | Founder, DiscipleIQ

In this dynamic presentation and discussion participants will delve into the ethical considerations surrounding artificial intelligence, exploring how AI source and implementation can align with Christian values. From preserving data privacy to hallucination issues and copyright, attendees will learn fundamental tenets to develop a comprehensive AI policy that empowers Christian ministries to leverage cutting-edge technology while staying true to Biblical principles, ensuring a responsible and impactful integration of AI within the context of faith-based media.

What you will learn:

• Ethical framework for considering AI use in ministries
• General Template to AI Policy – accessible free online
• Awareness of the hyper-personalized conversation capability of generative AI

Next Level Storytelling with Risk

Jim Veneman

When my wife and I hike, we usually use an app to help us stay on a proven trail. Sometimes in our work, that well-worn, safe path may prevent us from reaching our destination, the audience. Often, storytelling that makes that most important connection grows out of a willingness to take a risk and an acceptance of uncertainty. Most likely we are fully prepared and completely ready for the adventure ahead. We just don’t believe it.

What you will learn:

• Training wheels. Sometimes they are important. We just need to remember to take them off
• Keep in mind that we are creative extensions of each other
• Powerful storytelling touches people in a way they didn’t expect or anticipate
• Fear of failure derails risk-taking
• “Tell everyone to sit down.” John 6:10

Whatever You Have is Exactly What You Need to Tell a Powerful Story

Jim Veneman | Photojournalism Lecturer

Have you ever been lying in bed at night, and just as you are about to fall asleep, you hear an unfamiliar sound? Instantly you are keenly aware of everything. Your heart begins to race as you wait on even the slightest noise. Sometimes in our search for the right perspective or moment, the right sound bite, or strongest quote, we detect that we’re getting close. Suddenly, our senses are fully awake. Sure, that happens anytime we come face to face with something incredible, but what about waking up day after day surrounded by the familiar, the common?

What you will learn:

• What’s one thing we all have in common on a good day? Desire
• The fundamentals of good storytelling are still in place, regardless of technology
• Think cinematically, watching for the in-between
• Notice what’s beyond the backyard fence
• People will remember the way you make them feel

Intentional Time Management

Tom LiCalzi | Leadership Coach, Intentional Consulting

In today’s fast-paced world, effective time management is a crucial skill to invest into the truly important. Learn practical strategies to identify and prioritize the execution of tasks in your daily rhythm. Discover ways to set realistic goals, break them into manageable tasks, and develop the habits to skillfully execute them.

What you will learn:

• How mindful technology usage provides the right balance for increased efficiency
• Actionable steps to maintain focus and achieve optimal results
• Habits that naturally enhance productivity and contribute to long-term success

21 Vital Elements of a Great Non-Fiction Article

Tez Brooks | Writing Coach, Author

Learn what must be in your article to produce well-rounded non-fiction that satisfies readers and establishes you as an authority on the topic.

Creativity by Design™

Dean Sell | Founder, Red Leaf Brands™

Creativity is the most powerful resource given to mankind. And yet, it is largely misunderstood. We mistake it for a mysterious flash of inspiration like “catching lightning in a bottle” or reduce it to a trivial exercise of “getting creative”. But just like gravity and electricity, creativity is an inescapable force of nature God has designed into each one of us. And if we’re going to get better at making it work, we need to understand how it works. 

What you will learn:

• Uncover the biblical principles of creativity; the theological framework, and each of its components
• As an individual contributor, learn how to navigate the process and elevate what you make
• As a leader, learn how to organize your teams and orchestrate your process

The Future of Print and Digital Leadership

José Reyes | Creative Director, Metaleap
Nikolle Reyes | Managing Director, Metaleap

How we think about content and audiences across print and digital has had to change. The shift has led to a host of new creative challenges and opportunities. As we’ve guided teams and publications through both transition and transformation—from print to eblasts to websites to social and digital channels—we’ve seen how hard it can be to balance everything. Many are left scrambling to push content to all these different platforms without feeling clear and confident on the best approach for each type of content and audience segment. In this session, we will explore how to lead well across print and digital, and we’ll talk about where the future is heading.

Flipping the Script: Reaching the Next Generation for Jesus

Chuck Peters | Director of Lifeway NextGen

Kids of Gen Z and Generation Alpha have a fundamentally different worldview than previous generations. In order to reach them for Christ, the church needs to understand and address their two big cultural concerns: belonging and identity. This session will help you understand what kids are thinking and explore strategies to engage them more effectively.

Maximize Your Digital Assets: Leveraging your Data for Maximum Value and Impact

Mark Dreistadt | Founder and President, Infinity Concepts

We live in a world where data has become the most precious commodity on earth. It is important to understand the value of the data we possess and leverage that data for maximum value and impact. Whether your goal is to amplify engagement or ethically monetize your assets, our workshop will provide actionable strategies tailored to your objectives. Don’t miss this chance to take your digital strategy to the next level and unlock the full potential of your digital assets. Unlock the full potential of your digital arsenal, empowering you to connect deeply with your audience, maximize revenue streams, and leave a lasting impact in the digital landscape. From crafting captivating content to leveraging cutting-edge analytics and marketing techniques, discover how to elevate your online presence and drive tangible results.

Should Christian Journalism Serve a Higher Purpose?

Tim Morgan | Journalism Professor, Gordon College

A critical look at the Christian media’s role in this era of nationalism, polarization, and alienation.