J-School Scores a Quartet of First-Place Awards in SPJ Competition

  • By jerehester
J-School Prof. Miguel Paz (far left) and News Director Jere Hester, join some award-winning alumni (from left to right): Samia Bouzid, Jesenia De Moya, Elizabeth Tung, Kimberly Chin, Estefanía Hernández and Lidia Hernández Tapia. (Photo: Samantha Maldonado)

CUNY J-School news outlets took home four first-place prizes Sunday in the Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Awards for Region 1, which covers most of the Northeast.

In addition, the J-School collected nine finalist certificates during the awards ceremony held in Philadelphia as part of Region 1’s annual spring conference.

Among the winners, which are now eligible for national Mark of Excellence Awards:

The other J-School finalists included:

27 Young People So They Don’t Get Deported” earned a finalist slot in the Online Feature Reporting category. The trio produced English and Spanish language versions of the NYCity News Service story for CityLab.

  • Navigating Trump,” a NYCity News Service collection of interactives that attempt to bring some clarity to the impact of the Trump Era, placed in the Best Use of Multimedia and the Online In-Depth Reporting categories.
  • Two NYCity News Service special reports, Invisible Hands, which looks at the impact of undocumented immigrants on New York’s economy, and Table Scraps, which examines the fight for a $15 minimum wage, were finalists in the Online News Reporting category.

In all, the J-School’s NYCity News Service and AudioFiles podcast received 13 honors in nine categories.

Alumni who worked on some of the projects cited were among a contingent that represented the J-School at the awards ceremony and the conference.

In addition, Prof. Miguel Paz ran a two-part “hackathon” aimed at generating strategies to bring more diversity to newsrooms; and Interactive Program Director Sandeep Junnarkar and News Director Jere Hester led a workshop on PathChartr, a tool they created to help journalists quickly and easily create personalized news interactives.