New Member FAQ

New Member FAQ

Why become a member of the FCA?
§     The Florida Communication Journal ? The FCJ is a state journal that attracts national and international submissions.
§     Annual convention ? Every year participants comment on the “warm” atmosphere of our annual convention. In contrast to larger conventions, it is easy to make new contacts, share information and be involved.
§     Information to improve your classroom effectiveness ? Many of our conference panels provide helpful teaching strategies and classroom activities that are geared toward a variety of communication sub-specialties.
§     Guest speakers ? The opportunity to meet and discuss important communication issues with knowledgeable guest speakers. For example, the 2003 conference featured Ken Cissna, author, scholar, and Professor of Communication at the University of South Florida. Our 2004 Keynote speaker was Lisa A. Malone, Deputy Director, External Relations and Business Development Directorate of the John F.Kennedy Space Center.
§     Great value ? At $30.00, membership for faculty in FCA is the most economical in the communication discipline, and student membership is offered at an even lower cost to encourage participation.
§     Our newsletter provides a way to keep members updated and connected throughout the year.

What are the special incentives for joining the FCA?
The following are the special incentives established by the FCA Executive Board to encourage attendance and participation at this year’s convention:
1.  Regular or Patron Members who bring a new regular or patron member to the convention will be entitled to a refund of half of the convention fee if BOTH reregister for the entire convention (Package A). Provide the name of your new colleague when you reregister and you will receive your refund at the convention. (Must be received by October 6 to qualify)
2.  Special Student pre-registration rates, $20 for one day including lunch for that day, and $50 for the entire convention including all functions. (Must be received by October 6 to qualify)
3.  Prize drawings at Saturday’s luncheon include a) One Convention Hotel Night Free (limited to attendees staying in the convention hotel), b) Two year free membership in FCA at member’s current membership status.

What are the strengths of the FCA?
§     Informality and opportunity for more personal contact and involvement.
§     Geographic proximity to other members for professional networking.
§     Lower cost and less time commitment for conference attendance.
§     Provides a less intimidating environment for presentations (ideal for junior faculty and students, as well as good feedback to senior researchers and scholars).
§     Long history of strong affiliation and tradition.

What awards are given by the FCA?
The following are the awards given out by the FCA:
§     The student scholarship award
§     Teaching award
§     Service Award
§     Awards for undergraduate and graduate students’ papers

Who are the members of the Executive Board?
2004-2005 Board Members:

President:                     Sue Easton                   Rollins College
Immediate Past Pres     Christine Hanlon           University of Central Florida
1st V.P.:                        Deb Hefferin                 Broward Community College
2nd V.P.:                       Deb Walker                 University of South Florida
Exec Sec-Treasurer      Richard Quianthy          Broward Community College
“             Elect:              Jim Katt                      University of Central Florida
Recording Secretary:    Kim Johnson                Rollins  College
Newsletter Editor:         Cherie Cannon             Miami Dade College
Web Editor                  Shari Hodgson              University of Central Florida
Elem / Secondary Rep       Beth Goldman              J.P. Taravella High School
Journal Editor               Bonnie Clark Jerreris    St. Petersburgh College
Journal Editor Elect       Wally  Schmidt Rollins  College

How do I become a member of the FCA?
You can join the FCA at anytime throughout the year by completing the membership registration form on this website at

How can I get more involved?
One of the nicest things about the FCA is the ability to get involved. There are several committees that will ask for volunteers at the convention, such as the membership committee, site selection committee, awards committee, etc. You can also serve as a campus contact.

What is a campus contact?
A campus contact is the person to whom information on the FCA would be directed. This person would be charged with the task of disseminating this information to all the communication colleagues on their campus. This would include adjuncts and students/student associations that might otherwise not be on our lists.

I am presenting my first paper. Do you have any advice?
Your presentation should follow the rules of good speech making, plan on an introduction and a conclusion. Organize the body of your speech and provide internal organization mechanisms for easy of listening. Stick strictly to allotted time and do not read your paper or outline, speak extemporaneously. Cover all of the necessary points, but do so with brevity in mind; less is more. You may also find additional details in many academic publications, such as:
Gosling, P.J. (1999). Scientist’s Guide to Poster Presentations. Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers: New York.
Jones, L.B., Clark, M. & Hollier, J. A Checklist for Conference Presenters. Innovation Abstracts, XVIV (1).

What is considered professional behavior at the convention?
As with any professional organization or gathering, everyone is expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner. This means using good judgment when deciding on appropriate topics of conversation, dress, and consumption of alcohol. It is also important to employ proper etiquette when approaching others. Be conscious of what they are doing; do not interrupt unnecessarily or speak during another’s presentation. Save questions until after a presenter has finished, or questions are invited by the session facilitator. Often there will be several presentations in a panel format and the moderator may offer a summary or a review before opening the session to Q & A from the audience.

When should I plan to arrive and depart from the convention?
We invite you to participate fully in our convention. On Thursday night, everyone is invited to our newcomer reception which is followed by our opening spotlight session. Arriving early gives you an opportunity to visit with old friends and meet new people. Staying until the end allows you to attend sessions and be a part of the business of the FCA. Our Saturday luncheon is important for honoring award winners and discussing was to get more involved in the FCA to make it stronger in the future.

How should I organize my time at the convention?
It is your first priority to know when you are scheduled to present. It is important to find this out as soon as possible; your attendance at sessions will be scheduled around your presentation. From this point on it is entirely up to you to decide what is important or of interest to you and to plan your schedule accordingly. The convention schedule will be available online this summer.

Does the FCA offer any special events for Newcomers?
Yes, on the first night of the convention, Thursday at 7PM we will have a Newcomer Reception. Please join us to meet some of our other members. Location will be announced at registration.

I am the only person coming from my institution. How can I meet people?
One way is to arrive early enough to signup for social events at the conference. It is also recommended that new members attend the New Member Orientation to familiarize you with the convention specifics. Furthermore, it is recommended that you as a new or single attendee partake of all the meetings that are offered to you with your membership. You’ll find the FCA members warm and friendly.

If I’m alone, what should I do at mealtime?
Meal time is also a great time to meet new people. Most individuals at the FCA welcome you to join their table if they are also just being seated. It is very common to continue your conversation with session participants over lunch. Invite others to join you instead of waiting for an invitation. You should also plan to attend the President’s Reception on Friday afternoon and make dinner plans at that time if you are free.

How can I network with others?
For everyone, the convention is an opportunity to meet new people with whom you share an interest. In the event that you see someone who you admire or simply spot someone you want to meet, you may have someone introduce you or you may introduce yourself. Those attending these functions expect to meet many new people; therefore walking up to someone would not be inappropriate.

How can I find out more details about the hotel, transportation and logistics?
For now, you can go to the temporary FCA Website at

How can I find out more details about the program at the convention?
These will be posted on the FCA,