Campus: CSU, Northridge -- April 04, 2001

CSUN Sweeps College Journalism Competition

Cal State Northridge journalism students swept nearly every category in the Society of Professional Journalists' annual regional college competition, winning a total of 21 awards including, the sweepstakes trophy which honors overall excellence.

The students received their honors at a special luncheon on Saturday, March 31, at Disney's Grand California Hotel in Anaheim.

"The accomplishments of our students showcases the excellence of the future reporters and editors coming out of our department, and the excellence of the education they are getting here at CSUN," said Cynthia Rawitch, chair of the university's Journalism Department. "We're always proud when they do good journalism work and it's recognized in the professional world."
All three of the department's programs that allow students to put what they learn in the classroom into practical application - the student newspaper Daily Sundial, public radio station KCSN (88.5-FM) and cable access news show Valley View News- received recognition.

The Daily Sundial received four awards. Student Karmel Melamed won first place for spot news reporting, student David Carrillo won second and third place for sports writing and the publication won best all-around non-daily newspaper.

KCSN won a total of 12 awards. In the radio spot news category, student Aron Bender won first and third place while his colleague, Andrea Chavez, took second place. KCSN also swept the radio feature and in-depth categories. In radio features Kristin Harriman took first, Alexis Rouse second and Cherelle Hartley-Bonar third. In in-depth reporting, Diana Castillo took first, Lisa Halter second and Andrea Chavez third. Asally Adib took first in the radio sports category and
Mark Nash took second. KCSN's news show "Evening Update" was rated best radio daily news show.

Students working on Valley View News also won several awards. Andrew Padula took second in spot news reporting while Lisa Halter took third. Halter also took third in the feature category. The show won best television non-daily newscast.

CSUN's journalism program as a whole beat out UCLA, San Francisco State and Arizona State to take the competition's sweepstakes prize.

The victories were particularly sweet for the students who make up the staff at KCSN, which has won a total of 24 journalism awards so far this year. Twelve of the awards were against professionally-staffed news programs.

In January, KCSN won six Golden Mikes from the Radio-Television News Association of Southern California. Last month the staff received three awards from the Associated Press Television-Radio Association and three regional Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio-Television News Directors Association.

"These awards are an indication that our students are doing professional quality work," said KCSN's news director Keith Goldstein.

There are more than 450 students from a variety of backgrounds enrolled in CSUN's journalism program, which offers training in several fields - newspapers, radio and television broadcasting, on-line media, magazines, public relations and photojournalism.

The CSUN Journalism Department is one of only 104 accredited programs in the Western Hemisphere, and is considered by professionals in the field as one of the top departments in the nation.

California State University, Northridge has more than 29,000 full- and part-time students and offers 58 bachelor's and 50 master's degrees. Founded in 1958, it is the only four-year university in the San Fernando Valley.

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