Three Minnesota State University Moorhead mass communication majors, Lane Zyvoloski, Sauk Rapids, Minn., Bryce Haugen, Moorhead, Minn., and Kaitlyn Teske, Fargo, N.D., were honored nationally by the Society of Professional Journalist’s 2012 Mark of Excellence Awards.
Senior, Zyvoloski, won a national award for Online Feature Reporting from a medium-sized school for her “Being Queen: Life in Drag” story she wrote for the MSUM blog “Doing it Downtown.”
“I am humbled and extremely thankful to the people who made this possible,” Zyvoloski said. “The drag queens allowed me into their lives and they didn’t have to. My professor helped me edit and edit again and again and I couldn’t have done this without her.”
Haugen, a senior, was a national finalist for Breaking News Reporting from a medium-sized school for his “Sanford gives $2 million to Dragon Athletics” article he wrote for “The Advocate,” MSUM’s student-produced newspaper. The national winner from this category was a student from the Ivy League school, Brown University.
“It’s validating to know that reporting work done at MSUM can get acknowledged at this level of competition,” Haugen said. “This is the most exciting thing that has happened to me so far in my reporting career.”
Teske, a 2012 graduate, was a national winner for Feature Photography from a medium-sized school for her “Kaffestua: Sunburg Man Serves Authentic Norwegian Food” photo story that was published in MSUM’s “Horizonlines.org” “To Be Different” edition.
“I think the hands on approach that MSUM gives to its mass communication students really helped me blossom as a photographer,” Teske said. “Guidance from the photo professors and being able to work on projects like “Horionlines.org” gave me the opportunity to explore projects like this that I otherwise probably wouldn’t have found.”
SPJ’s Mark of Excellence awards honor the best in student journalism. Judges were directed to choose only the entries that they felt were worthy of a national award. If the judges determined that none of the entries met the level of excellence, than no award was given.