Student publications win awards

Two weekends in a row, members of The Bells staff took home awards from prestigious journalist associations.

Texas’ cowtown, Fort Worth, welcomed 60 schools and about 550 individuals from universities and colleges all over the state for the annual

Texas Intercollegiate Press Association’s conference March 31-April 2.

The Bells newspaper and the Bluebonnet yearbook brought home a combined 55 awards.

TIPA is the oldest collegiate press association in the nation. Originating at Baylor University in 1909, it has grown into one of the largest and most respected collegiate groups in the country.

Starting with just three initial competitions, the association now hosts contests in general magazine, radio, television, online, two divisions of yearbook, literary magazine and six divisions of newspaper, plus more than 25 on-site contests during the annual event.

The Bells received 33 awards overall, including 2nd place Overall Excellence.

Adviser for The Bells Vicky Kendig is proud of the accomplishments her staff has made.

“The many awards they won from the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association this year show not only their talent in varied areas ranging from writing to online engagement but also their dedication to the publication and to UMHB,” she said. “They often work long hours and give up other activities to publish an outstanding newspaper that keeps the campus informed.”

Junior mass communication/journalism and theology/philosophy major and Editor-In-Chief for The Bells Evan Duncan had positive things to say about the experience.

“It’s nice to be able to be together as a staff, and it’s great to receive recognition for the hard work we put in,” Duncan said.

Assistant Editor senior mass communication/journalism major Stacy Fannin was happy with the staff’s success despite winning more in the past.

“You can’t be on all the time, and next year I hope the staff can improve,” she said.

The Bluebonnet took home 22 awards with 1st place Overall Excellence.

Adviser for the Bluebonnet Avery Reese was excited and proud of  her staff’s success this year.

“They work hard all year to meet deadlines and produce the best yearbook possible for UMHB, so ultimately winning 1st out of all the Division 2 schools in Texas is encouraging,” Reese said. “It validates to the staff that they are doing a great job.”

Last weekend, four Bells staff members and Kendig traveled to the Society of Professional Journalists annual Region 8 conference in Norman, Okla.

SPJ is the nation’s most broad-based journalism organization founded in 1909.

The Bells went up against colleges and universities from all over Texas and Oklahoma.

The staff won 1st place Best All-Around Non-Daily Student Newspaper for four year college/university. This means the staff will advance to the national conference next fall in New Orleans, La.

Fannin, Duncan and junior mass communication/journalism and church history major Brittany Montgomery won 3rd place for their in-depth reporting series on Islam.

Senior mass communication major Lauren Piercey won 2nd place for her feature Recalling Fort Hood Tragedy.

Duncan is thrilled about the publication’s recent success.

He said, “It is an honor to be recognized throughout both Texas and Oklahoma. I know I have the best staff there is, but it’s great for the authority in journalism to agree with me.”

Author: The Bells Staff

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