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Cronkite Student Takes 1st Place in Hearst Radio Regional Competition

March 3, 2016
Jacob McAuliffe
Jacob McAuliffe

An Arizona State University student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication placed first among 50 students from 30 different universities in the radio news competition at the annual Hearst Journalism Awards.

Jacob McAuliffe, a junior from Tempe, Ariz., took first place and a $2,600 award for a collection of radio stories that aired on Arizona news radio station KTAR-FM and ASU’s student-operated radio station The Blaze, KASC-AM. The win qualifies McAuliffe for the Hearst Journalism Awards Championship this June in San Francisco.

“It’s pretty exciting,” McAuliffe said. “I’m really thankful to the mentors that I’ve had at the Cronkite School. I wouldn’t have gotten first without the classes I've taken and student media organizations I've been a part of, which have both made me a much better radio journalist.”

McAuliffe, who serves as The Blaze’s news director, won for a range of stories that highlighted Phoenix homeless centers, a pirate radio station and ASU students who professionally play video games.  Olivia Richard, a Cronkite sophomore from Azusa, Calif., placed 18th in the same competition for stories on the GOP debate in Colorado and searching for a homeless woman in Phoenix.

Both McAuliffe and Richard scored points for the Cronkite School in the Hearst Intercollegiate Broadcast Competition, which honors the best broadcast journalism students in the nation. The Cronkite School is currently in second place.  

“We are extremely proud of the outstanding work of Jacob and Olivia,” said Mike Wong, director of Cronkite Career Services. “Their radio news stories shed light on important regional issues. We look forward to seeing Jacob compete in the Hearst national radio news championship in San Francisco.”

The annual Hearst Journalism Awards Program, considered the Pulitzer Prizes of collegiate journalism, is held in 108 member universities of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication with accredited undergraduate journalism programs.  The Broadcast News Competition was added in 1988 to the Program which also includes writing, photojournalism, and multimedia competitions and offers awards totaling up to $500,000 annually.