Journalism Students Win State Awards – The Brookhaven Courier

Brookhaven Courier staff took home a big prize at the 2021 Texas Community College Journalism Association Awards Ceremony. Current and former editors, staff and photographers won a total of 32 awards in Divisions 1 and 2.

Top honors included first place awards in news writing, news photos, in-depth reporting and headline writing. In recent years, Courier editors have traveled to participate in the TCCJA convention which featured various live competitions against two-year colleges across the state. In addition to live competitions, past events have included prominent Texan reporters from media outlets such as The Dallas Morning News and Dallas Observer.

Daniel Rodrigue, Student Publications Advisor, said: “Although I was a little disappointed our writers and students were unable to participate in any live contests at the convention this year, due to the ongoing pandemic I am more than proud of the work accomplished by our staff and students over the past year. In all but one of the categories, students won prizes for the two entries they submitted.

Current editor-in-chief Mykel Hilliard won second and third prizes for criticism as well as third place for sports writing. “I couldn’t be more proud of our current and former editors. Many of the projects we undertook in the past year have required more time and patience due to the pandemic, ”he said. “I hope we can resume live competitions next year and start working together again.”

Hilliard said he was happy with the results of his individual awards. “I stepped out of my comfort zone last year and broached topics I had never written about,” he said.

Editor-in-chief Rosa Poetschke and Hilliard have won several awards together, including first and second place for writing headlines and first place for overall excellence for the Courier website.

“It is such an honor to have our website recognized,” said Poetschke. “In the absence of a physical document, we have focused our efforts on our website to continue to produce engaging content. “

Poetschke said she was happy to see the work of Courier staff and contributors recognized despite the challenges faced during the pandemic.

Former Brookhaven Courier editor-in-chief Desiree Gutierrez has won several awards, including first place for feature writing and second place for feature film photography.

“Winning made me feel validated,” Gutierrez said. She said these victories helped her build her self-confidence while continuing her career as a professional journalist. “Being recognized has affirmed that I am on the right track and that I am capable of great things,” said Gutierrez.

The TCCJA in-person convention is scheduled to return in the fall of 2022.


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