The Meek School of Journalism and New Media

The University of Mississippi

Archive for the ‘Student News’ Category

Big wins in Vegas for Meek School

Posted on: April 16th, 2015 by drwenger

SuduWinThe Meek School of Journalism is flying high for a couple of different reasons.  First, the student-produced NewsWatch 99 broadcast took home an honorable mention at the Broadcast Education Association (BEA) competition in Las Vegas this week.  According to NewsWatch 99 advisor Dr. Nancy Dupont, a 4th place showing in the national contest is the highest ranking the program has ever received.

In addition to the broadcast honors, Dupont and Prof. Deb Wenger presented in multiple sessions at the conference, moderating or participating in panels on topics such as using audience analytics in teaching and job hunting for broadcast students.

Journalism students and NewsWatch 99 managers Browning Stubbs and Sudu Upadhyay also traveled to Vegas for the conference.  BEA meets annually with the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) because that group attracts more than 100,000 attendees who showcase products and demonstrate techniques affecting radio and television industries.

Upadhyay and Stubbs evaluated the latest in broadcast technology, which they hope to leverage in an effort to bring home a first-place award for student newscast in 2016.

Meek School senior places 4th in Hearst competition

Posted on: April 10th, 2015 by ewrobins
Clancy Smith

Clancy Smith

An article based on her interview with Civil Rights hero and U.S. Rep. John Lewis has won honors in a Hearst competition for Clancy Smith and further enhanced the reputation of the journalism school at the University of Mississippi.

Smith, a senior, placed fourth out of 99 entries from 56 schools throughout the nation in the Personality Profile category of the writing competition in the annual Hearst Journalism Awards Program.

The award for the senior Journalism major was the highest for any University of Mississippi student since Ole Miss students began entering the contest in the fall of 1975.

“This is a remarkable achievement when you recognize all the outstanding graduates that Ole Miss has produced in the elite media,” said Will Norton, Jr., dean of the Meek School of Journalism and New Media.

The Hearst Foundation describes the program purpose as support, encouragement and assistance to journalism education at the college and university level. The program awards scholarships to students for outstanding performance in college-level journalism, with matching grants to the students’ schools.

Hearst Journalism Awards are considered the Pulitzers of collegiate journalism.

This honor absolutely would not have been possible without Mr. Bill Rose, Smith said. He taught the class that produces the Delta Reporting Project, “Land of Broken Dreams” that included the profile on Lewis, a Democrat from Georgia.

“Clancy Smith’s perceptive profile of civil rights icon John Lewis was a powerful, multi-layered look inside the psyche of a man very nearly martyred for the cause,” Rose said.

“In a story laden with symbolism, she told of a man who responded to hate with love, a man who clung to a gospel of hope and forgiveness even when beaten within an inch of his life. It was an artful story, taking readers through Lewis’ childhood then into the turbulent civil rights era of the 1960s and finally to the halls of Congress,” Rose said.

“His guidance allowed me to be competitive in a competition that is usually dominated by much larger schools.” Smith said.

“A Meek student placing this high shows that Ole Miss has outstanding professors who work diligently with students outside the classroom as well as in the classroom,” Norton said.

“I’m just so happy that the Meek School of Journalism and New Media is getting recognition for the wonderful program that it is,” Smith said.

Smith, a Saltillo, Mississippi, native will graduate in May and plans to attend the University of Alabama to pursue a master’s degree in Public Relations.

“The one thing I do know is that I want to continue writing in a way that improves the lives of others and helps keep the public knowledgeable about important issues,” she said.

 

2014-2015 Student Media managers: diverse, accomplished, driven to succeed

Posted on: March 4th, 2015 by ewrobins
Lacey Russel walks down the street in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2015. (DM Photo | Cady Herring)

Lacey Russell walks down the street in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Wednesday, Jan. 14, 2015. (DM Photo | Cady Herring)

Phillip Waller on the field at Vaught- Hemingway stadium on Oct. 4, 2014 on the campus of the University of Mississippi. (Phillip Waller | The Ole Miss)

Phillip Waller on the field at Vaught- Hemingway stadium on Oct. 4, 2014 on the campus of the University of Mississippi. (Phillip Waller | The Ole Miss)

Sudu Upadhyay

Sudu Upadhyay at Newswatch 99

Madelyn Mohr

Madelyn Mohr at Rebel Radio

Lacey Russell

Her first story made it into The Daily Mississippian, and then her second story made it on the front page, above the fold, and the rest, as Lacey Russell said, is history.

“I remember Instragramming my front page, and I thought maybe I have a knack for this,” said Russell, a junior journalism major from Tupelo.

“I had no idea it made the front page until somebody Tweeted at me. I was totally shocked, and I geeked out, and then I told my mom. That’s what confirmed that this is what I’m supposed to do — that feeling of gratification, knowing that all my hard work paid off.”

Russell was named editor-in-chief for the 2014-2015 school year.

“The selection committee was impressed with Lacey’s multiple platform experience, in print, TV and digital media,” said Patricia Thompson, student media director and adviser for The Daily Mississippian.

“Lacey had a tough act to follow, given the success of last year’s DM staff, but she has led her team to produce outstanding journalism — great in-depth articles, great design, great photography and great headlines.”

Some of the highlights from Russell’s tenure so far have included the front page after the football’s team victory over Alabama and a moving 10-year anniversary piece on the fire at the ATO fraternity house.

“People stop me on campus to tell me how much they have enjoyed reading The Daily Mississippian,” Thompson said.

Russell’s passion remains reporting and getting out in the field and getting to hear people’s stories and then telling their stories. She had an internship at WTVA-TV in Tupelo during winter break her sophomore year, and this year, she was one of 10 students selected to participate in a School of Journalism and New Media international journalism reporting course in Ethiopia during Winter Intersession.

Russell has faced her share of challenges as editor-in-chief. It has not only made her a stronger editor, writer and reporter, but also a stronger person.

“It’s hard to keep up with everything,” Russell said. “Being a 20-year-old college student and balancing class and also being responsible for a paper that’s circulating to thousands of people every day, it’s tough. People like to point the finger at the editor, and that used to bother me. I used to take it really personally. But I have really developed a thick skin through this job. Not much gets to me anymore.”

Russell has not made definite plans for her senior year and beyond, but she said she plans to remain involved in student media. She has applied for several summer internships. She also had some words to the wise.

“Get involved,” Russell said. “This is so essential for your career. You have to have experience. I know on my resume I have my experience before I have any of my education. It’s so important to do something and come out of college with work you have to show for it for your employers. And the SMC is a great place to get involved. There’s so much opportunity over here.”

She added: “There are going to be days where you don’t want to get out of bed and there are days where you will have stayed up until 5 a.m. working on the paper or working on your schoolwork, but hang in there and it will all be worth it one day.”

 

Phillip Waller

Phillip Waller is one of 10 outstanding seniors selected for the 2014-2015 Hall of Fame, one of the university’s highest honors.

Waller has worked as a photographer, editor and writer for The Daily Mississippian and The Ole Miss yearbook. This year, he is editor-in-chief of The Ole Miss.

A journalism and public policy leadership double-major in the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, Waller traces his interest back to his aunt, Cynthia Ferguson, who used to be journalism instructor at Oxford High School, and before that, she worked for the Oxford Eagle.

“She got me interested in this idea that students could produce good work, and that the opportunities you have as a journalist are unmatched with any other profession,” Waller said.

His interest in journalism started with photography, growing up in a family where photography was something fun to do, something to relax, something to record a memory, and for him, it started with a simple point-and-shoot camera. He traces his serious work to the purchase of his first SLR camera, which he used all through high school.

“It starts with an interest, and then developing that interest, reinforcing that interest and then having a support group there,” Waller said. “My experience is not unique, but it’s something I’m blessed to have. I’m very thankful.”

Among his favorite things as a journalist, Waller said, are the opportunities for hands-on learning – experiencing events such as a sporting event or a theater production up close and personal with unmatched access. His work as a journalist has earned him a first-place Society of Journalists regional award for Best Non-Fiction Magazine Article, and first place in the On-Site News Photography Competition at the regional Southeast Journalism Conference.

“The student media center has reinforced the things I knew I already loved, and it allowed me to explore those with the resources and the capabilities that the center offers,” Waller said. “It has also provided me with a support group that can teach me skills and place me out there with opportunities that I wouldn’t have had otherwise.”

Student Media Director Patricia Thompson said that Waller has been a key player at the Student Media Center for several years. The Ole Miss annual has a reputation as one of the top yearbooks in the country, and this year’s book will continue that tradition, she said.

“Phillip is that rare person who excels as a writer as well as a visual journalist, so he was a perfect choice to be editor-in-chief of the yearbook,” Thompson said. “He’s active on campus, very plugged-in, and that has made a big difference. I have been particularly impressed with Phillip’s outreach and use of social media to broaden the awareness of the yearbook. He’s one of our top students academically, he’s a good manager, and he’s creative and full of ideas. That’s a great combination.”

As a student manager, Waller said his charge is not only to make the best publication, but also to pay it forward and help the next generation succeed.

“You want to make sure if you have a skill you know you spent a lot of time learning, that you make that skill that much easier for the next person to learn and give them that much higher of a position to start from for the next year,” Waller said. “When you have that talent pipeline in place, when you have people working to make sure the next generation is moving forward, then you can have an excellent publication.”

Looking to his future, Waller said he was drawn to journalism because of the strong communications education and training. He sees a career related to his two majors, perhaps in a political campaign capacity, adding that he has tried to remain flexible and keep his options open. Last summer, he had an internship in Washington, D.C., as a press intern in the office of Sen. Roger Wicker and as a digital intern at the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

“I’m definitely excited about the possibilities out there for me because I have been prepared for them here,” Waller said. “I have the flexibility and the skills, and I know how put myself out there because I have had this experience working in the Student Media Center. That’s going to serve me well in whatever I do.”

 

Sudu Upadhyay

Sudu Upadhyay is not one to settle. Whether it has been as a videographer assistant for Ole Miss athletics, sports anchor and reporter for Newswatch 99, or the station manager for the student-run TV show, Upadhyay strives to be the best.

Most freshmen aren’t ready to take on a leadership role, but Upadhyay proved himself to be the exception to the rule, excelling not only as an anchor and reporter, but also as the co-sports director on the way to becoming station manager as only a sophomore.

“Sudu doesn’t shoot for the ordinary,” said Nancy Dupont, faculty adviser for Newswatch. “He wants everything to be extraordinary. He’s not going to settle for anything.”

Upadhyay is a broadcast journalism major from Oxford, said was involved with athletics productions in high school.

“I met Stewart Pirani, then the (NewsWatch) student manager, when I was a senior in high school,” Upadhyay said. “I was shying away from student media. I was focusing more on the athletics production side, and he told me, if I really wanted to get into sports reporting, this was something I needed to check out.”

Upadhyay came in and shadowed for a few days and fell in love with the fast-moving news environment.

After winning two awards in a regional competition where he was pitted against students from universities across the Southeast United States, Upadhyay was offered a job by a television director in Louisiana, who was stunned when she found out he was just a freshman.

“If people are looking at me this way as a freshman, I can’t imagine what I could do being more involved, so that’s what made me get involved and stayed involved at Newswatch,” Upadhyay said.

Upadhyay was recently notified that his entry in the prestigious Hearst journalism competition placed in the Top 20 nationally. His entry included a four-part series from Togo, Africa, and a stand-up about the science of tornadoes – all of which aired on NewsWatch last spring, when he was a freshman.

“Someone that extraordinary needs an outlet very quickly,” Dupont said. “He wandered over here, and everybody saw what he could do, so they put him to work immediately.”

The highlight of his time so far as station manager, Upadhyay said, has been the Ole Miss-Alabama football game, which the Rebels went on to win 17-10 over the top-ranked Crimson Tide.

“The Alabama show was a focus from the beginning of the year,” Upadhyay said. “We said, if Ole Miss was undefeated going into the Alabama game, that was going to be our biggest show and that was what we are going to enter for an Emmy. That was the biggest show, and it went smoothly.

“After that, I got burned out, but then I thought, ‘We had one good show. Now, we have to follow it up. We can’t be a one-trick pony with one great show and then fall off.’ We already had a spectacular show. If people saw that, they need to see that same standard or a higher standard of Newswatch every day, so that’s what keeps me going and keeps me trying to make better shows.”

One of the changes the hard-working NewsWatch staff has made this year is the addition of frequent live feeds.

Looking ahead to next year, Upadhyay plans to work as an anchor and reporter for Newswatch, and pursue other opportunities for professional and campus internships.

 

Madelyn Mohr

Madelyn Mohr, a senior accountancy major from Houston, Texas, rose through the ranks at Rebel Radio, from “DJ Mad Dog,” to production director, to station manager. She loved music, so she followed her passion.

“Since I have been able to stand, I have liked to sing,” Mohr said. “Classic rock is my favorite genre, and I remember my dad was always playing that. In middle school, I played the French horn in band for four or five years, and then I started playing the guitar and singing in restaurants. I got into music, and I loved that, and Rebel Radio made sense, so I pursued it.”

As the station manager for the 2014-2015 academic year, Madelyn oversees a staff of more than 30 students.

Rebel Radio is one of only a handful of college student-run commercial FM radio stations in the country. The station broadcasts 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and boasts a signal stretching nearly 40 miles across North Mississippi.

“It’s the hidden gem of the SMC,” Mohr said. “If you love classic rock music, you can apply as a DJ and do your own classic rock segment. If you want to get involved with production work or get involved with businesses, you can do that too. You can also program music into the system and work with the Adobe Audition program to create commercials. If you want to work in the radio industry, you can get a lot of hands-on experience here.”

Her experience at Rebel Radio, Mohr said, has helped her see not just radio, but the entire music industry. As part of her accountancy degree program, she is currently in Houston as an intern with Ernst and Young.

Mohr is interested in pursuing a master’s degree in music business and then a career as a general manager of a radio station, or something along those lines.

Rebel Radio adviser Roy Frostenson said that Mohr’s internship in January and February allows her to successfully combine her accounting and music backgrounds.

“That is an example of how her love for music, nurtured by the SMC and Rebel Radio, is shaping her career choices,” Frostenson said.

Whether you’re an incoming student or a current student, a journalism major or a non-journalism major, Mohr made a pitch for Rebel Radio and the Student Media Center.

“If you love music, this is the place on campus to go,” Mohr said. “No other place on campus is going to let you plug in your computer or your phone and have your own playlist and play what you want and talk about the artists or festivals in the music industry.”

Meek School students named SEJC champions

Posted on: March 2nd, 2015 by ewrobins
Photo by Cady Herring, Daily Mississippian Photo Editor

Photo illustration by Cady Herring, Daily Mississippian Photo Editor

University of Mississippi students won 26 awards in the annual Southeast Journalism Conference, and for the fourth time in five years, they were honored as the first-place Onsite Championship Team.

This year’s conference was hosted by Georgia State University from Feb. 26-28 in Atlanta. Two separate awards ceremonies were held: Best of the South, which honors student work published or broadcast from November 2013 through November 2014, and onsite competitions where students compete on deadline in 17 different categories.

Sudu Upadhyay and Cady Herring – both sophomores – each won two first-place awards. Herring, who is Daily Mississippian Photo Editor, was named Best Press Photographer in the Best of the South contest, and won first place in the onsite news photography contest. Upadhyay, who is NewsWatch Station Manager, was named Best Television Journalist in Best of the South contest, and he and senior NewsWatch anchor Gabriel Austin won first place in the onsite Television Reporting team category.

Other first-place winners were:

  • Ellen Whitaker, first place in the onsite page layout competition. Whitaker is a DM Design Editor.
  • Sierra Mannie, first place in the onsite op-ed writing competition. Mannie is DM Opinion Editor. Read the column at theDMonline.com.
  • Adam Ganucheau, first place for Best Special Event Reporer/Editor in Best of the South. Ganucheau broke the news in February 2014 that the James Meredith statute on campus was found draped with a noose and a flag with Confederate symbols, and the award was for his news coverage as well as editorials and enterprise, including an interview with James Meredith in Jackson. This is the second year in a row that Ganucheau won first place in this category. Ganucheau is former Daily Mississippian Editor-in-Chief. He graduated last May, and is working as a reporter for AL.com in Birmingham.

Other students who won awards were:

  • Clara Turnage, second place for Best Feature Writer in Best of the South. Turnage is DM Lifestyles Editor.
  • Sarah Parrish, second place in the copy editing onsite competition. Parrish is DM Managing Editor.
  • Shawna Mackenzie Hicks, second place in the onsite media ethics competition. Hicks is DM Copy Chief.
  • Payton Green, second place in the onsite current events competition. Green is NewsWatch News Director.
  • Miriam Cresswell, second place for Best Journalism Research Paper. Her paper was titled “The Disappearance of Chaney, Goodman, and Schwerner and the Media’s Response,” and she wrote it for “The Press and The Changing South” class taught by Dr. Kathleen Wickham. Creswell, former NewsWatch Station Manager, graduated last May, and is working as a producer at WAAY-TV in Huntsville.
  • Lacey Russell, third place for Best News Writer in Best of the South, and honorable mention in the onsite feature writing competition. Russell is DM Editor-in-Chief.
  • Dylan Rubino, third place for Best Sports Writer in Best of the South. Rubino is DM Sports Editor.
  • Allison Moore, third place for Best Newspaper Page Layout Designer in Best of the South. Moore is a DM Design Editor.
  • Ian Cleary, fourth place for Best News-Editorial Artist-Illustrator. Cleary is DM cartoonist.
  • Gabriel Austin, fourth place for Best TV Hard News Reporter in Best of the South. Austin is a NewsWatch anchor.
  • Amy Hornsby, sixth place for Best Advertising Staff Member in Best of the South. Hornsby is Rebel Radio Interim Station Manager.
  • Browning Stubbs, sixth place for Best Multimedia Journalist. Stubbs is NewsWatch Sports Director, DM basketball beat writer, and a Rebel Radio sports DJ.
  • Kendyl Noon, ninth place for Best TV News Feature Reporter. Noon is a NewsWatch anchor and DM Online Editor.

NewsWatch Ch. 99 won third place for Best College Video News Program, and fourth place for Best College TV Station. The Daily Mississippian won sixth place for Best College Newspaper, and was the only daily newspaper honored. TheDMonline.com won tenth place as Best College Website.

Best of the South had 523 entries from 33 universities. About 200 students from across the southeast competed in the onsite competitions.

More than 45 universities in seven states are members of SEJC. The 2016 conference will be at Austin Peay State University in Clarksville, Tennessee. In 2017, the conference will be here at the University of Mississippi.

Student-faculty team creates documentary on Ole Miss Engineering project in West Africa

Posted on: December 9th, 2014 by drwenger

Screen Shot 2014-12-09 at 1.09.21 PMIn January 2014, two Engineering Without Borders (EWB) teams from the School of Engineering at Ole Miss returned to Togo, West Africa, to complete a school they started building for the people of the Hedome village a year before. Ole Miss Meek School of Journalism and New Media student journalist Sudu Upadhyay and professor Nancy Dupont followed the team to the West African country to document their work. Here is Sudu’s documentary that chronicles EWB’s work and tells a remarkable story of a minister trying to help his people.

The EWB organization will be returning to Togo in 2015 to work on a medical clinic for the village.  For more information about the program, contact the engineering school’s assistant dean, Marni Kendricks, mckendri@olemiss.edu.

 

Pursuing a dream – one student who did all the right things

Posted on: December 9th, 2014 by ewrobins
Laura Marcucci

Laura Marcucci. Photo courtesy of HottyToddy.com

Motivation, inspiration and knowledge – three things university professors and instructors utilize to get their points across to students. On a daily basis, students sit in class and listen to these professionals as they hand out expertise in their chosen fields, stressing what a student has to do to get a job after graduation. Many listen and follow their advice, while others may or may not understand the crucial importance of taking every opportunity and running with it.

One Ole Miss student who did listen and did all the right things is Laura Marcucci. Marcucci is an Integrated Marketing Communications major and graduates in December. And with the New Year comes a new job that is already waiting for her after graduation.  Read more on HottyToddy.com.

Journalism Innovation class experiments with Google Glass

Posted on: November 10th, 2014 by drwenger

KendricksGlassTechnology keeps changing the way journalists tell stories and that has students in Professor Deb Wenger’s Journalism Innovation class experimenting with Google Glass this semester.  The Web-enabled eyewear has been used by professional journalists to cover breaking events such as the Ferguson, Missouri, riots and feature stories such as NBA Draft Day through the eyes of Victor Oladipo.

Students were challenged to come up with stories that took advantage of the unique “point of view” video that Glass wearers can provide.  For example, Ashleigh Culpepper and her partner Sarah Douglass had USA pole vault champion Sam Kendricks wear Glass during a practice session.

“The Google Glass story was like nothing I’ve ever experienced before,” said Culpepper, “being a pole vaulter myself I never have seen pole vaulting in slow motion. It was one of the coolest things I’ve ever done.”

Journalism students Nicole Bounds and Gabriel Austin asked a dancer with RIOULT Dance NY to wear Glass during a rehearsal at the Ford Center with somewhat dizzying results.

“The most challenging thing is explaining to someone how to work Glass,” said Bounds. “I think it is especially hard because you can’t see what they are seeing on the Glass screen, which makes it hard to explain what to do next. With Glass, only the person wearing Glass can see the screen.”

Wenger says the class is designed to expose journalism students to the latest trends in journalism practice and hopes these experiments will help students understand what’s possible, as well as what’s effective, when it comes to the use of new technologies.

“You have to play around with tech and think through its applications before you can use it as an effective storytelling tool,” said Wenger. “These stories aren’t perfect, but producing them contributed to the learning process that every good journalist has to go through these days.”

Meek students get in on the ACT 5

Posted on: October 13th, 2014 by drwenger

Screen Shot 2014-10-13 at 10.07.55 AMThe fifth annual ACT Experience conference, hosted by the Magazine Innovation Center and Dr. Samir Husni allowed students and faculty to interact with media industry leaders from around the world.

It also gave students in the Journalism Innovation course a chance to test out some new skills.  The students in Prof. Deb Wenger’s section of the course hosted a twitter chat with ACT 5 speaker Bo Sacks.

They prepped for the chat by participating in one themselves in the week leading up to the event.  They researched their expert, promoted the chat through the school’s Twitter feed, as well as to their own followers and kept the conversation going about the future of print in a digital world.

“The final step in the exercise was to summarize the chat through the use of Storify, which allowed students to continue adding to the conversation by pulling in links to Bo’s previous writings and speeches and by adding context to the 140 character exchanges,” said Wenger.

Students also registered for Klout accounts to determine how hosting the chat might affect their impact on social media.  Most were happy to report an increase in their scores, though a few lost a handful of followers during the event, at least one gained a couple as well.

“This type of exploration followed by application is critical to helping students understand the point of learning about technology in their journalism and communications courses,” Wenger said.

Storify

Academic Calendar 2015-2016

Posted on: September 24th, 2012 by elwalke1

Academic Calendar

 

For questions about advising or to set up an advising session, please e-mail meekschool@olemiss.edu.