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School of Journalism & Broadcasting News


BOWLING GREEN, Ky. -- Journalism Scholars Day, a 43-year tradition at WKU, attracted more than 400 Kentucky high school journalism students and more than 20 media advisers from 27 schools across the state to campus Friday, Nov. 20.

The three-hour conference included a scholarship writing contest and the Mark of Excellence yearbook awards ceremony as well as breakout sessions with topics ranging from design and photography to feature writing and the television fundamentals taught by WKU faculty and students.

For two Kentucky high school students, the conference was more than just a learning opportunity.

Michelle Hawks, a senior from Franklin-Simpson High School, Franklin, and Ethan Hayse, a senior from Pleasure Ridge Park High School, Louisville, won the on-site Story Write-Off Scholarship Contest. They both earned a $500 scholarship to attend WKU in fall 2016.

Ryan Pait, an Elizabethtown graduate student and copy editor of the Talisman, facilitated the newsroom-style writing competition, which requires students to write a feature story, self-edit and submit it in less than an hour

Fourteen schools participated in the Mark of Excellence Yearbook Contest competition awards ceremony. Best overall winner in the A-AAA Division (100 to 1100 students) was the The Chronicle of South Warren High School, Bowling Green. Best overall winner in the AAAA Division (1100 students and above) was the Crimson of duPont Manual High School, Louisville.  The complete list of 2015 Mark of Excellence yearbook award winners is provided on the School of Journalism & Broadcasting’s website at

The conference goal is to encourage excellence in high school media classes and to provide high school students with the opportunity to increase their knowledge and skills.

Journalism Scholars Day attendees came from Adair County High School, Bowling Green High School, Butler Traditional High School, Central Hardin High School, Corbin High School, Daviess County High School, duPont Manual High School, Elizabethtown High School, Fern Creek Traditional High School, Fort Campbell High School, Franklin-Simpson High School, Greenwood High School, Jeffersontown High School, John Hardin High School, LaRue County High School, Meade County High School, North Hardin High School, Owensboro High School, Pleasure Ridge Park High School,  South Warren High School and Warren East High School.

The 2015 James L. Highland Media Adviser of the Year award went to James Miller. Miller serves as an adviser at duPont Manual High School in Louisville and is an advocate for student journalists’ rights.

The James L. Highland Media Adviser of the Year Award was established to recognize the Kentucky high school media teacher who actively supports and protects the First Amendment rights of students through inspiring high ethical and professional standards. In addition, the award recognizes outstanding achievement in Kentucky’s high school or middle school media classrooms and in student publications and broadcasts.

About Journalism Scholars Day

Journalism Scholars Day, coordinated by Charlotte Turtle, is co-sponsored by the School of Journalism & Broadcasting, the Kentucky High School Media Institute, WKU’s chapter of Society of Professional Journalists, and the College Heights Herald and Talisman.

Originally called High School Press Day, the conference was renamed Journalism Scholars Day in the late 1980s. Having a day devoted to high school journalism is a WKU tradition that dates back to the 1970s. A component of the 21st Century Media Program of Distinction at WKU, the Kentucky High School Media Institute is funded by Kentucky’s Council on Post-Secondary Education Regional Excellence Trust Fund. The Institute’s primary goal is to support and supplement scholastic journalism endeavors in Kentucky.  Loup Langton, Ph.D. is the director of WKU’s School of Journalism & Broadcasting.  

Contact: Charlotte Turtle, (270)745-3055

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 Last Modified 9/25/14