This month, the West Virginia University Reed College of Media’s student-produced television newscast, WVU News, won a first-place national Emmy Award for best college newscast in the country. The Television Academy Foundation presented the award last week the 36th Annual College Television Awards.
WVU News’ special edition episode, All Things Social Media, was produced by Cory Sanchez of Sissonville, West Virginia, and focused on the Craigslist killer, cyber bullying, cyber stalking and Snapchat advertising. The show beat out newscasts from The University of Oklahoma and Northwestern University.
“A first-place college television award makes it known that WVU News can compete among the best,” said Sanchez. “This is an award that shows off our ability to be well-rounded, creative student journalists.”
Sanchez, who graduated in December 2014, won an all-expense-paid trip to the April 23 gala in Los Angeles, California, to accept the award on behalf of the College. Winners also were invited to attend a Nominee Summit the day before the gala, where they were introduced to top industry professionals and participated in a series of panels and workshops. Students also become part of the Television Academy Foundation alumni network, which provides access to year-round networking opportunities and events.
“It’s such an honor to have our newscast recognized on a national level by the Television Academy” said Teaching Associate Professor Gina Dahlia, who oversees production of the newscast. “I believe this award speak volumes to the high quality of our students, our facilities and our program.”
The College of Television Awards was established in 1978 by a partnership between Television Academy Foundation Board members, Lynne Gross and Frank O’Conner, and public relations executive Herbert Schmertz. Just as the Primetime Emmy Awards recognize excellence in professional television, the College Television Awards honor the talent and work of college students nationwide.
Submissions are judged by Television Academy members and go through a three-round judging process, culminating in a final judging that awards first, second and third place prizes.
The Broadcast Education Association has recognized “WVU News” as the best student newscast in the country.
The weekly newscast produced by students of the West Virginia University’s P.I. Reed School of Journalism received two awards at the 2011 BEA Festival of Media Arts competition—first place in the student newscast competition and the BEA “Best of Festival King Foundation Award.”
The 16 student and faculty works chosen to win Best of Festival awards were selected from more than 900 entries in the following competition categories: audio, video, documentary, interactive multimedia, news, scriptwriting, sports and two-year and small colleges.
Journalism Teaching Assistant Professor and Television Journalism Program Chair Gina Martino Dahlia said winning this award is a huge achievement for the television journalism program and the students.
“Everyone sees the polished ‘end’ product – the newscast – but what they don’t see is how much work and team effort is put into a weekly newscast,” said Dahlia. “I’ve had students work on a story all night and still be here when I come in the next morning. That is dedication. My job is to inspire the students, but when I see how hard they all work to make ‘WVU News’ a quality production, they inspire me to be a better teacher.”
The BEA Festival of Media Arts is an international refereed exhibition of faculty creative activities and a national showcase for student works sponsored by the Charles and Lucille King Family Foundation, Avid and Sony.
Best of Festival winners will be honored at the 9th Annual BEA Best of Festival King Foundation Award Ceremony in Las Vegas on Monday, April 11.
During the ceremony, recipients will be recognized with a high-definition screening of their winning project, a cash award of $1,000 from the Charles and Lucille King Family Foundation, and a gift of Media Composer film and video editing software from Avid Technologies.
The ceremony will be held at the Las Vegas Hilton Hotel during the BEA’s annual convention and exhibition.
For a complete list of winner for all of the Festival of Media Arts competition, see: www.beaweb.org/pdfs/2011winners.pdf.
The BEA award is the third major award “WVU News” has won in recent months. This fall, the newscast won a gold Marcom for Best Broadcast TV Program and a Platinum Ava Award, which recognizes outstanding work by creative audio-visual professionals.