Cronkite students take 1st in regional journalism competition

April 13, 2012

For the 12th consecutive year, students of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University took first place in the regional Society of Professional Journalists’ Mark of Excellence competition.

The Cronkite School won a total of 38 awards, more than double the number won by the next closest school. University of California at Berkeley finished second with 15 awards, followed by UCLA (12), San Francisco State University (five), University of Arizona (five) and University of Southern California (three). Download Full Image

The Region 11 Mark of Excellence contest recognizes the best student journalism in Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Guam and the Mariana Islands.

The Cronkite School’s awards this year included 13 first-place honors across the contest’s print, radio, television and online categories. The first-place stories and publications will compete with other regional first-place winners in the national Mark of Excellence contest.

Cronkite NewsWatch, the school's live, 30-minute, student-produced newscast airing on Arizona PBS four nights a week, was named Best All-Around Television Newscast among four-year universities. Cronkite students also took first-place honors in seven of the nine television categories, including TV Breaking News Reporting, TV General News Reporting, TV In-Depth Reporting, TV News Photography, TV Sports Photography and TV Sports Reporting. In addition, Cronkite students swept the categories of TV In-Depth Reporting, TV General News Reporting, TV Sports Reporting, TV News Photography and Online Opinion and Commentary.

The State Press, ASU’s student newspaper, was named Best All-Around Daily Student Newspaper and also took first place in Online Featuring Reporting for its multimedia project “Life on the Light Rail.” Downtown Devil, another student-produced publication, won Best Independent Online Student Publication.   

In addition, Cronkite News Service staff earned first-place honors in Online News Reporting for their multimedia report on life at the U.S.-Mexico border. Cronkite students in News21, a national investigative journalism initiative headquartered at the Cronkite School, received first place in the Online In-Depth Reporting category for their multimedia project “How Safe Is Your Food?”   

Cronkite students routinely dominate the SPJ regional and national competitions, winning nearly 250 SPJ regional awards in the last six years. In addition, last year they came in first in the national SPJ contest for the sixth consecutive year.

Earlier this year, Cronkite won first in the Broadcast Education Association Festival of Media Arts competition, taking home 20 student awards that included two Best of Festival and two first-place awards.

Broadcast Awards:

Best All-Around Television Newscast
First: Cronkite NewsWatch Staff, “Cronkite NewsWatch”

TV Breaking News Reporting

First: Lauren Titus, “Occupy Phoenix”

Third: Ryan Haarer, “Occupy Light Rail”

TV General News Reporting

First: Kylee Gauna, “American Border Patrol”

Second: Taryn Hale, “Bark Beetles”

Third: Gardenia Coleman, “Head Start Expands”

TV In-Depth Reporting

First: Lisa Ruhl, “The Daily Journey”

Second: Dan Neligh, “A Line in the Sand: The Story of Two Volunteers on the U.S.-Mexico Border”

Third: Matthew Trotter, “Medicaid Cuts Put Rural Hospitals on Tougher Financial Limits”

TV Feature Reporting

Second: Krystal Klei, “Female Boxing Promoter”

Third: Dan Neligh, “Symphony Conductor”

TV Sports Reporting

First: Lisa Blanco and Isaac Easley, “Kenny Mitchell”

Second: Jason Lewis, “ASU Lacrosse”

Third: Mallory Kydd, “Jim Brock”

TV News Photography

First: Dan Neligh, “A Line in the Sand: The Story of Two Volunteers on the U.S.-Mexico Border”

Second: Taryn Hale, “Border Rancher”

Third: Gardenia Coleman, “Gila River Shelter”

TV Feature Photography

Second: Dan Neligh, “Symphony Conductor”

Third: Nathan O’Neal, “Underground Hotel”

TV Sports Photography

First: Brandon Kamerman, “Volleyball Smarties”

Third: Isaac Easley, “The New Battlefield”

Radio Feature Reporting

Second: Nick Gnat, “Johnny D”


Online Awards:

Best Independent Online Student Publication

First: Downtown Devil staff, “Downtown Devil”

Online News Reporting

First: Cronkite News Service staff, “24 Hours at the Border Reveals Region That Defies Stereotypes”

Third: Selena Larson, Lindsay Hoffman and Stephanie Paeprer, “Scars of War”

Online In-Depth Reporting

First: News21 staff, “How Safe Is Your Food?”

Second: Depth reporting class, “Stateless in the Dominican Republic”

Online Feature Reporting

First: State Press staff, “Life on the Light Rail”

Online Sports Reporting

Second: Andrew Gruman, “Men's Hoops Tops OSU on Emotional Senior Day”

Third: Domenico Nicosia, “Roller Derby Teams Skate, Collide Toward Championship”

Online Opinion & Commentary

First: Vaughn Hillyard, 2011 columns

Second: Brendan Capria, 2011 columns

General News Photography

Second: Michel Duarte, “Border Markets Provide Passage for Undocumented Immigrants”


Print Awards:

Best All-Around Daily Student Newspaper

First: State Press staff, “The State Press”

Best Student Magazine

Second: State Press staff, “State Press Magazine”

General News Reporting

Third: Shawn Raymundo, “Tattoo Parlor Case Draws First Amendment Debate”

Sports Photography

Second: Beth Easterbrook, “Football Steamrolls UC Davis”

Editorial Cartooning

Second: Chelsea Rash, 2011 cartoons

Reporter , ASU Now


National accreditation attained for new Landscape Architecture master's program

April 13, 2012

The Design School in the ASU Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts received accreditation from the Landscape Architectural Accreditation Board for its graduate program in landscape architecture, giving the young program and its graduates national credibility and endorsement.

The national board’s accreditation puts the three-year-old graduate program on the map, according to Joseph Ewan, associate professor and assistant director of The Design School. Photo by Ken Howie Studios Download Full Image

“The newly accredited program offers students an advanced degree in the most sustainable discipline in the university as well as new concurrent degree opportunities in urban design and environmental science,’’ said Darren Petrucci, professor and director of The Design School.

“This is a significant accomplishment because we just graduated our first MLA class last year,’’ Petrucci said. He credited the faculty and students for achieving what he called “a very important milestone.”

“We are confident that in the near future this will be a top tier nationally recognized program,’’ he added.

The landscape architecture masters program was approved in 2008 and graduated its first class in May 2011.

The national accrediting body sent a four-member team to ASU in the fall of 2011 for a series of interviews with faculty, administrators, students, area architects, alumni and Kwang-Wu Kim, dean and director of the Herberger Institute. Accreditation was announced in March 2012.

In addition to the prestige of accreditation, receiving the LAAB’s stamp of approval also has practical implications, Ewan said.

“Having a degree that is accredited means that I will be able to take these skills into the highest level of my field as a licensed landscape architect,” said Lora Martens, a graduate of the program. “It will allow me to work on federal jobs since many build projects funded by the federal government require a licensed landscape architect on the project team and many state and city-funded jobs have this same requirement’’.

Martens also credits The Design School program with preparing her to not only compete for a job in landscape architecture but to also take a leadership role quickly as an entry level designer. Martens, who is also a member of the program’s first graduating class, works at Steve Martino and Associates in Phoenix.

Valerie Ahyong, also a recent graduate, said that the accreditation is a significant achievement for landscape architecture in Arizona.

“The accreditation process is vital in examining and ensuring that a program meets requirements set forth by the Council of Landscape Architectural Registration Boards and the profession, and ensures that the university and the school is providing the proper education and experiences required to prepare graduating students to work in the professional field,” said Ahyong, a site designer for Smithgroup JJR in Phoenix and vice-president-elect for the central section of the Arizona American Society of Landscape Architects.