Hearst Journalism Awards 2016 national champions

The UNC School of Media and Journalism has won the 2016 national championship in the Hearst Journalism Awards competition – considered the Pulitzers of collegiate journalism.

This is the school’s sixth overall national championship, its second consecutive and its fourth since 2010. UNC is the only school to have finished in the top 5 overall every year since 2004.

In 2016, the school finished overall first in photojournalism, first in broadcast, second in multimedia and fifth in writing. The wins earn the school $24,000 in awards from Hearst.

In addition to the school’s overall intercollegiate wins, six UNC students were among the 28 from across the nation competing in San Francisco May 30 through June 3 in individual competitions. Dean Susan King and Professors Charlie Tuggle and Pat Davison accompanied the students to San Francisco.

Two UNC MJ-school students won 2016 individual national championships.

  • CB Cotton, a May 2016 graduate from Jacksonville, N.C., won the national championship in broadcast news that comes with a $5,000 award.
  • Emily Rhyne, a May 2016 graduate from Wilson, N.C., won the national championship in multimedia that comes with a $5,000 award. Rhyne also won a $1,000 award for Best Multimedia Story of the Year.

Two students posted top 3 individual national honors in the photojournalism category.

  • Dillon Deaton, a May 2016 graduate from Asheville, N.C., took second place and a $4,000 award.
  • Tegan Johnston, a May 2016 graduate from Raleigh, N.C., took third place and a $3,000 award.

Jaclyn Lee, a rising senior from Newbury Park, California, and Ben Smart, a May 2016 graduate from Fountain Hills, Arizona, were both honored as finalists in the Television Broadcast News Championship and awarded $1,500. Smart also won a $1,000 award for Best Use of Television for News Coverage.

The championships are the culmination of the 2015-16 Hearst Journalism Awards competitions, which are held among the 108 member colleges and universities of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication with accredited undergraduate journalism programs.

The Hearst program holds year-long competitions in writing, photojournalism, radio news, television news and multimedia for undergraduates. Schools with the most points earned by their students in each category are designated the winners of the intercollegiate competitions.

The writing judges were Nicole Carroll, vice president/news and editor of The Arizona Republic; Mike Leary, senior vice president and editor of the San Antonio Express-News; and David Zeeck, president and publisher of the The News Tribune in Washington state.

The photojournalism judges were Kenneth Irby, independent visual consultant in Florida; Lisa Krantz, staff photographer at the San Antonio Express-News; and Sue Morrow, assistant multimedia director at the Sacramento Bee.

The broadcast news judges were Marci Burdick, senior vice president of Schurz Communications in Indiana; Harvey Nagler, vice president/radio for CBS News in New York; and Fred Young, retired senior vice president of pews for Hearst Television in New York.

The multimedia judges were Irby; Tiffany Campbell, managing editor/digital for WBUR 90.9 in Virginia; Kate O’Brian, president of Al Jazeera America in New York.

The William Randolph Hearst Foundation was established by its namesake in 1948. Since then, the Hearst Foundations have contributed more than $1 billion to numerous educational programs, health and medical care, human services and the arts in every state.

The Hearst Journalism Awards Program was founded in 1960 to foster journalism education through scholarships for outstanding college students. Since its inception, the program has distributed more than $12 million in scholarships and grants for the very best work by student journalists.