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UM Students Win 12 First-Place Awards at SPJ Conference

UM attendees who won awards at the SPJ regional conference include (left to right) Jason Cain, SPJ chapter adviser, and Daily Mississippian staff members Cameron Brooks, Lana Ferguson, Logan Kirkland, Jake Thrasher and Clara Turnage. Photo courtesy of the Meek School of Journalism and New Media
UM attendees who won awards at the SPJ regional conference include (left to right) Jason Cain, SPJ chapter adviser, and Daily Mississippian staff members Cameron Brooks, Lana Ferguson, Logan Kirkland, Jake Thrasher and Clara Turnage. Photo courtesy of the Meek School of Journalism and New Media

University of Mississippi students won 22 awards at the recent Society of Professional Journalists Region 12 Mark of Excellence contest in New Orleans.

The Daily Mississippian won first place as Best Student Newspaper and NewsWatch won first place for television breaking news reporting.

Students who covered the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina won first place for best use of multimedia, the “Atomic Mississippi” documentary won first place for television in-depth reporting, and Land of Broken Promises won first place for best magazine.

“This is yet more evidence of the amazing talent of our student journalists,” said Patricia Thompson, UM director of student media. “They work hours each week to not only put into practice what they are learning in their classes, but also to provide the campus and community with news and information they may not get anywhere else.”

Individual first place awards went to junior Clara Turnage, from New Hebron, for general news reporting for her article about the living wage campaign; senior Logan Kirkland, from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, for his online feature on the “Land of Runners” from the Meek School multimedia project in Ethiopia; Kirkland and sophomore Lana Ferguson, of Mechanicsville, Virginia, for breaking news coverage of the Graeme Harris sentencing; senior Jake Thrasher, from Birmingham, Alabama, for editorial cartoons; junior Deja Samuel, from Hattiesburg, for breaking news photography for photos of the state flag removal rally and protests; senior Kelly Savage, from Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, for TV general news reporting for her story about the author of the flag resolution calling for NAACP recognition; and Joe Rogers, senior from Brighton, Great Britain, for his online sports reporting feature on Croatian tennis players.

Ole Miss students who won awards as finalists in the contest are:

NewsWatch staff – TV newscast for flag aftermath broadcast

Lacey Russell, senior from Tupelo, and Maggie McDaniel, senior from Augusta, Georgia – TV breaking news, Graeme Harris sentencing

Waverly McCarthy, senior, Jackson – TV sports reporting, “Who Is Chad Kelly”

Riley Mueller, sophomore, College Station, Texas – radio sports reporting for concussion study

Logan Kirkland – online news reporting, first same-sex marriage in Lafayette County

Clara Turnage – breaking news reporting for Confederate symbolism conversation in the Grove, and general news for fraternity assault

Dylan Rubino, senior, Tuscaloosa, Alabama – sports writing, “The New Chad Kelly”

Cady Herring, junior, Olive Branch – breaking news photography, Dan Jones rally

Clancy Smith, 2015 graduate, Saltillo – magazine writing, Land of Broken Promises.

Ole Miss students competed across the region against major universities in Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana for the awards, which were presented April 16. SPJ organizations select one winner and two finalists in each category.

All first-place winners advance to the national contest to compete against winners in the other 11 regions. Winners of the national contest will be announced later this month.

Courtesy of Christina Steube and the Ole Miss News Desk

Adam Brown
Adam Brown
Sports Editor

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