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Cronkite School Scores Across Categories at Hearst Awards

June 2, 2017

Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication was one of the only schools in the country to place in every single category of the 2016-2017 Hearst Journalism Awards, often called the Pulitzer Prizes of collegiate journalism.

The Cronkite School finished in the top 10 in the contest’s four categories, placing third overall in broadcasting, sixth in multimedia, seventh in photojournalism and 10th in writing. Of the 106 accredited journalism programs, Cronkite was one of only two schools to score in the top 10 in all four categories.

Overall in the competition, the Cronkite School finished sixth in the nation, continuing its 16-year streak of top-10 overall national finishes.

“For our outstanding students to be among the very best across such diverse categories in one of the nation’s top journalism contents is a tremendous accomplishment,” said Cronkite School Dean Christopher Callahan. “It’s a testament to the extraordinary work of our amazing faculty and our innovative approach to teaching.”

The Cronkite School’s third-place finish in the broadcasting category included Adriana De Alba taking fourth place in television features and J McAuliffe finishing fifth in radio broadcast, with both students receiving $1,000 awards.

De Alba and McAuliffe traveled to San Francisco to compete in the Heart Awards Program National Championship. They were two of only 29 journalism students from across the country to take part in the select competition, which ran from May 29 to June 2.

De Alba finished second in the television broadcast news championship in San Francisco and received a $4,000 scholarship. McAuliffe was a national finalist in the radio broadcast news championship, winning a $1,500 scholarship. Both completed in-depth stories exploring the current political divide in America for the competition.

De Alba’s second-place finish continued the Cronkite School’s dominance in the television broadcast news championship. Cronkite students have finished in the top three for six consecutive years, winning the competition four times. She joins Yahaira Jacquez, who took third place in 2016, and first-place finishers Megan Thompson (2015), Shayne Dwyer (2014), John Genovese (2013) and Dan Neligh (2012).

“During a critical time for journalism, it’s reassuring to know that our work as young journalists is being recognized by one of the most prestigious awards nationwide,” said De Alba, who is headed to New York this summer to take part in an international news internship at CBS News. “It is truly an honor to have competed against the top journalism students from around the nation, and I'm thrilled to have represented the Cronkite School with this great achievement.”

The Hearst Journalism Awards were established by the William Randolph Hearst Foundation in 1960 to provide support, encouragement and assistance to journalism education at the college and university level. More than 100 accredited journalism schools across the country compete in the annual competition. The program awards up to $500,000 in scholarships, grants and stipends annually.

Cronkite School students who placed in the top 10 of this year’s Hearst regional competitions are:

Television Features
Fourth Place: Adriana De Alba

Radio Broadcast
Fifth Place: J McAuliffe

Breaking News Writing
Fourth Place: Charlene Santiago

Multimedia IV
Fourth Place: Molly Bilker, Socorro Carrillo, Anna Copper, Elizabeth Hansen and Courtney Pedroza

Eighth Place: Clara Benitez, Joshua Bowling, Claire Cleveland, Johanna Huckeba, Emily Mahoney, Ben Moffat, Agnel Philip, Gabriel Sandler, Ryan Santistevan and Jenny Ung

Television News
Eighth Place: Zackary Moran

Television Features
Ninth Place: Tyler Fingert

Photojournalism News and Features
Ninth Place: Courtney Pedroza