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ASU students receive top honors in National Native Media Awards

Monday, Aug. 30, 2021


Students from Arizona State University swept up 13 awards — 10 of them first-place prizes — in the Native American Journalist Association’s 2021 National Native Media Awards. 

Primarily in print and online categories, ASU students received more first-place prizes than any other student publication in the country. 

“One of the best things about the Cronkite News newsroom is the wide range of experiences and interests our journalists bring to the table,” said Cronkite News Director Allysa Adams. “There are so many stories ‘waiting to be told’ and we encourage our journalists to find those stories that impact underserved communities.” 

Cronkite News, the student-produced and faculty-led news organization of Arizona PBS, earned four awards, with three of them being first-place accolades.

This year, the NAJA revised competition rules for students. Only indigenous students can compete in the “student” division, while non-indigenous students and non-indigenous professionals compete together in the “associate” division. ASU took 10 awards in the indigenous “student” category and two in the “associate” category. 

McKenzie Allen-Charmley, Cronkite News reporter and officer for ASU’s NAJA chapter, took ASU’s only award in the professional division for her story about the health risks that the lack of indoor plumbing poses in nearly one-third of Navajo Nation households. 

“McKenzie has a passion for issues related to native communities and when she brought this story to our attention, we greenlit it immediately,” said Adams. “I think her passion and sincerity to learn about the topic came through, which enabled her to get her sources to really open up.” 

Here is a list of ASU winners in the student division:

Here is a list of ASU winners in the associate division:

Here is a list of ASU winners in the professional division:

Awards will be presented to the winners during the 2021 National Native Media Awards virtual ceremony on Oct. 28 via Zoom. Registration for the event is open and is available here

By Kasey Brammell