This just in: Two seniors from Colorado State University won the 2009 Robert Novak Collegiate Journalism Award beating 240 college journalists from around the country for a $5,000 prize.
J. David McSwane and Aaron Hedge exposed the misdeeds of their school’s president, Larry Penley, and former police chief, Dexter Yarbrough, causing their resignations.
Here’s excerpts from the press release:
According to one of the judges for the award McSwane and Hedge consistently held high-profile university officials accountable for their questionable conduct in stories that are meticulously documented, triple-checked and supplemented with audio and documents.
CSU Police Chief Yarbrough resigned after allegations of sexual harassment, falsifying police reports, and promoting potentially illegal police behavior surfaced. CSU President Penley resigned amidst scrutiny of his administration’s mismanagement of millions of dollars.
Second for the Novak Award went to James Kindle from the Cronkite Zine, Arizona State University’s online magazine, for his series that explored the lives of immigrants in South Africa. The University of Georgia’s Amanda Woodruff earned third place for uncovering the legal “foibles and fumbles” of the UGA Administration, including uncovering the details of a U.S. Civil Court case involving sexual harassment allegations against the dean of the journalism school.
The Robert Novak Collegiate Journalism Award recognizes excellence in collegiate reporting in which the student’s work demonstrates an understanding of the basic ideas that support a free society. Renamed last year for the veteran newsman and former award judge, this award is one of three sponsored by the Institute on Political Journalism, the collegiate journalism program of The Fund for American Studies.
The Institute on Political Journalism is sponsored by The Fund for American Studies a Washington, D.C. educational nonprofit. IPJ is one of five internship programs for college students administered in partnership with Georgetown University. For more information, visit www.dcinternships.org/ipj.