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The New AU Society of the Professional Journalists Chapter Offers Students Professional Membership

By Lilyen McCarthy

Adelphi welcomes the chapter of Society of Professional Journalists at Adelphi (AU-SPJ),

The Adelphi University chapter of SPJ logo.

which has just received national approval and recognition. As a student media organization, it seeks to educate the community about the field of journalism, defend the rights of the student media organizations, and otherwise promote ethical and responsible journalism. It is open to Adelphi undergraduate students of all disciplines and backgrounds.

The new organization is led by President Lilyen McCarthy, Vice President Elizabeth Panchyk and Secretary-Treasurer Kurana Doobay. McCarthy is a sophomore English and journalism major and writes for The Delphian student newspaper. Panchyk, a junior journalism major, acts as assistant features editor for the paper. Doobay is also a junior journalism major and contributor to this paper. Advising AU-SPJ is Liza Burby, a senior adjunct professor in the Communications Department and faculty advisor to The Delphian. The four worked over the summer to meet the requirements of SPJ national: minimum membership count, a written constitution and completed checklist.

The students were inspired to start the chapter here when SPJ representative and award-winning local journalist Bill Bleyer visited Burby’s Magazine Feature Writing class in the spring. Bleyer spoke about the value of the organization, which also has a local chapter, the Press Club of Long Island through which several Adelphi students have won journalism awards and scholarships.

“When I heard about the opportunity to start this chapter on campus, I knew I had to take it. Being able to hold journalism-themed programs and help network my fellow students and me is so exciting,” said this reporter.

AU-SPJ will be holding general body meetings and plans a number of programs and events for Adelphi’s media community. One program to look for is a student event at which the chapter will offer professional headshots for a $5 fee. AU-SPJ will also have a table where students are encouraged to join this professional organization for $38 to have access to networking opportunities, as well as additional events AU-SPJ plans to hold this school year.

“Student membership in AU-SPJ gives you access to networking opportunities and experiences that will benefit your career search, as well as the chance to learn about the standards and ethical practices of journalism,” said Burby, who has been an SPJ member since 1993. “Further, we have counterparts at the other Long Island universities, which gives our students access to other student journalists and advisors.”

Find the SPJ link at

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