Ohio Newspaper Association Awards Student Media Several Top Honors

Students from Kent State’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication (JMC) received three top honors at the Ohio Newspaper Association Convention on Feb. 17, 2016 in Columbus.

The Kent Stater, the award-winning independent student-run newspaper of Kent State, earned first place for multimedia, sports coverage and headline writing in Division A (large universities) of the Ohio Collegiate Newspaper and Best Website Awards.

The first-place multimedia feature, “Coming Home,” by alumna Chelsae Ketchum (visual journalism, Class of 2015), tells the story of two brothers from Akron – the younger, who dreams of playing in the NBA, and the older, who returned home from college to mentor his brother and help him train. Judges praised the package’s production and creative storytelling elements.

Of the first-place sports coverage entry, judges applauded the Kent State student journalists for digging deeper than game stories and for their “solid enterprise reporting and strong features on topics likely to connect with … readers.” And of the first-place headline writing entry, judges noted the “meaningful, succinct headlines that accurately reflect the stories they serve.”

“I was really happy that our students won seven awards, including three top honors, among Ohio's big colleges,” said Mitch McKenney, associate professor of journalism and student media advisor. “The pieces that won did something special with what would otherwise might have been routine, which is where a good newsroom really shines."

The Kent Stater/KentWired.com also received the following honors:

  • Second place for photojournalism
  • Third place for news coverage
  • Third place for website (for KentWired.com, a collaborative effort of student journalists working for The Kent Stater and TV2)
  • Third place for in-depth reporting for the fracking ballot issue, featuring work by JMC students/alumni Matt Merchant (Class of 2015, journalism), Ryan Dunn (junior, electronic media production) and Graham Smith (junior, visual journalism) 
POSTED: Tuesday, February 23, 2016 - 2:45pm
UPDATED: Monday, March 7, 2016 - 4:48pm