Students honored by journalism society

Heather Scarlett

Kara Pospichel, winner of the Society of Professional Journalist’s Mark of Excellence award for breaking news reporting in television, reminisces about her experience behind the TV2 anchor desk. DAVID RANUCCI | SUMMER KENT STATER

Credit: Steve Schirra

Three students from TV2, Kent State’s student-run television station, won awards in the Society of Professional Journalists’ Mark of Excellence competition.

Kara Pospichel received national first place in the television breaking news reporting category, and Erin Moore and Amanda Seese were named national finalists in the television in-depth reporting category.

The Mark of Excellence is a national competition for college journalists, said Gary Hanson, TV2 adviser and associate professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. This year, more than 3,100 entries were submitted from 12 national regions into 43 different categories.

The three broadcast journalism students won at regionals, which qualified them to continue to nationals.

Pospichel, who graduated in May, entered her piece “Battalion 325.” She said she first got involved in the competition when Hanson encouraged his students to enter.

The footage in Pospichel’s piece covered a ceremony of recognition for a battalion of soldiers who served together in Iraq to protect freedom, Pospichel said.

“I was proud of my story, so I submitted it,” Pospichel said.

Moore, who graduated in December, and Seese, who graduated in May, entered a piece titled “H1B Visas.” Moore said they were “trying to find out if American companies had to advertise for American workers before going abroad for foreign workers.”

Moore said she had heard about the competition, but hadn’t thought about entering because she was focusing on her class work. It wasn’t until a teacher urged her to enter that she decided to do so.

Jeff Fruit, director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, said the students have done excellent work in the contest.

“It’s great for the program and the students to be judged as top-notch,” Fruit said.

“A recognition of superior performance reflects well on the program because they learn to do what they did here,” said Tim Smith, SPJ adviser at Kent State.

The students, who were informed about their awards through e-mail, said they were excited to learn about their achievements.

“I had to reread the e-mail three times,” Pospichel said. “I had to call my mom and dad right away.”

Hanson said the students’ achievements are a “real honor,” and that the department has typically done well in the competition.

The three students will be honored at the SPJ Convention and National Journalism Conference in Chicago this August.

“It feels good to be recognized for your hard work,” Moore said. “I accomplished what I set out to do with this piece.”

Contact general assignment reporter Heather Scarlett at [email protected].