CMA offers its members a host of valuable benefits that include, but are not limited to:
Network: Joining CMA admits you to a peer network of more than 700 professionals across North America who are ready to share solutions, strategies and support. CMA offers members access to a robust searchable online directory, discussion forums, and entry to the members only listserv. The CMA list fields multiple questions daily that are addressed collaboratively by professionals with experience to share.
Code of Ethical Behavior: Membership in CMA signifies acceptance of its Code of Ethical Behavior and a willingness to abide by its tenets. The Code is widely recognized among higher education institutions as the guideline for standard practices in college student media advising.
Adviser Advocacy Program: CMA members who perform their duties in compliance with CMA’s Code of Ethics but find themselves fired, demoted or punished as a result may activate CMA’s Adviser Advocacy Program. Trained CMA advocates investigate cases and attempt to mediate, offer educational sessions with the school, and if necessary, CMA may officially censure an institution and bring attention to its actions in the local and national press.
Educational Conventions: CMA sponsors a fall and spring national convention each year that feature more than 200 educational sessions, keynote speakers, media tours, on-site competitions, critiques and special events. The fall convention, held in partnership with Associated Collegiate Press and Collegiate Broadcasters Inc., draws as many as 2,500 advisers and students and is generally held in late October. The spring convention offered exclusively by CMA is held in mid-March in New York City and draws 1,200 advisers and students.
Seminars & Workshops: CMA frequently offers educational opportunities in addition to its two national conventions. These include summer workshops focusing on specific topics and/or new adviser training, and special workshops throughout the year on topics ranging from multimedia production to advertising and marketing to design.
First Amendment Grants: CMA established the Ingelhart First Amendment Fund to underwrite innovative free expression education programs on the campuses of CMA members. All active CMA members will be eligible to apply for an annual grant from the fund. Through programs conceived and executed by advisers and students, CMA can do its part to protect the First Amendment, one campus at a time.
Awards: CMA annually recognizes the achievements of individuals through various award programs, including Honor Roll Adviser Awards for professionals who have advised for five or fewer years; Distinguished Adviser Awards for professionals who have advised for greater than five years; a variety of special honors recognizing service and outstanding achievements, and finally, the organization's highest honor, induction into the CMA Hall of Fame.
Contests: CMA recognizes excellence in student-produced work each year. The Dave L. Adams Apple Awards presented at the Spring National College Media Convention in New York honor outstanding work in a number of categories, and the annual Best of Collegiate Design recognizes excellence in visual communication.
Publications: CMA publishes a number of publications in support of college student media and the professionals who work with student staffs. These include journals, monographs, newsletters, notebooks and other specialty publications. College Media Review is the association’s flagship journal that features articles of interest and the latest research in college media.