Newspaper brings home 9 awards

Grambling State University’s campus newspaper, The Gramblinite, received nine awards in the Society of Professional Journalists Region 12 Mark of Excellence Awards, announced earlier this month at the group’s annual conference. 

The newspaper won five first-place awards, including Best All-Around Non-Daily Student Newspaper (medium). Schools competed in the contest according to enrollment, with The Gramblinite competing against schools with 5,000 to 10,000 students.

Justin Madden won first place in the General News Reporting category. for “Suspensions creates backlash; Orchesis in crisis,” a story about the turmoil within the university’s dance company when its director was temporarily suspended.

“Every point counts,” a story about the impact of the football team’s kicking game, won first place in Sports Writing. It was written by Tierra Smith, 20, of Houston, a sophomore mass communication major. 

Ciley Carrington, 23, a senior art major from Los Angeles and one of the newspaper’s two photo editors, won first place in Sports Photography for “Losing makes quarterback cry,” a Nov. 23 photo of starting quarterback D.J. Williams crying after the football team lost a game.

Jeremy Smith, 21, from Jacksonville, Fla., a double major in mass communication and education, won first place for General Column Writing. 

Othere awards won by the newspaper were:

ν General News Reporting, Second Place, Madden, “Tech Talk opinion article produces heated backlash.”

ν Sports Column Writing, Second Place, Kevin Keise.

ν General Column Writing, Third Place, Danielle Savage. 

ν Sports Writing, Third Place, Smith, “Going pro: G-Men make it to the NFL.” 

All first-place winners move on to compete against winners in other regions.

The awards were for work done by the newspaper in 2012. Current editor-in-chief Justin Madden held the same position in the fall, and Qiyas Royalty-Smith held the position in the spring 2012 semester.

The SPJ regional conference was held April 5-7 at the Meek School of Journalism and New Media and the Overby Center of Southern Journalism and Politics at the University of Mississippi in Oxford, Miss. 

The Society of Professional Journalists is dedicated to the perpetuation of free press as the cornerstone of our nation and our liberty. 

SPJ is divided into regions of  the United States. The Gramblinite competed in SPJ’s Region 12, which includes Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee.