The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University

The Reflector

    SEJC names The Reflector ‘Best in South’

    The Reflector racked up awards at the Southeast Journalism Conference, which includes media outlets from more than 30 colleges and universities in the southern United States, Friday and Saturday. The newspaper won 16 honors, including Best College Newspaper.
    Editor in chief Tyler Stewart said he was estatic about all the honors The Reflector received at the 21st annual Southeast Journalism Conference, held in Birmingham, Ala.
    “Every time you go into a competition, you hope for good things, but you never expect them,” said Stewart, a junior communications major. “I was hoping we would come out as one of the top publications, and coming out on the very top was one of the proudest moments I’ve ever had.”
    Stewart won third place College Journalist of the Year and first place in photography in the on-site competition.
    “I’m very happy about my individual awards, but that pales in comparison to the group effort,” he said. “We have a talented and intelligent staff, and without them it wouldn’t have been possible.”
    Stewart said The Reflector beat out 27 college newspapers for the highest award.
    “We were up against some top-notch publications, so coming out on top was a dream come true,” he said. “We’ve worked extremely hard, and it’s great to know our best efforts are considered the best out of any college publication in the southern United States.”
    Frances McDavid, adviser to The Reflector, said about 30 newspapers competed from seven different southern states. She said the paper came in sixth place last year.
    “It has consistently placed in the top 10 since 2002, but this is the highest it’s ever placed,” said McDavid, communications instructor.
    She said The Reflector’s staff this year is less experienced than in previous years but hard-working.
    “Despite the young staff, the inexperienced staff this year, a strong foundation has been built,” McDavid said.
    The conference awarded prizes both for submitted work from 2006 and competitions held during the convention, Stewart said. The Reflector won third place overall in the on-site contest.
    Entertainment editor Aaron Burdette won first place in feature writing for his work for The Reflector and second place in on-site entertainment writing, he said. The articles he won first prize for were features on local bands Young Agent Jones and The Persians and Red Sox relief pitcher Jonathan Papelbon.
    “I thought I’d do well just because of the Papelbon one, because he’s a pretty high-profile major league baseball player, so being able to get an interview with him was lucky,” said Burdette, a senior communications major.
    Opinion editor Jed Pressgrove received the first place award for opinion/editorial writing for three columns from 2006 and second place for a column he wrote on-site.
    “I didn’t expect to win because I’ve never won a writing award in journalism before,” said Pressgrove, a sociology graduate student.
    He said the contests were decided by two journalists from USA Today.
    “It’s good to get assurance from professionals that you’re doing a good job, but I think what the readers think is more important than what two experts think,” he said.

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    The Student Newspaper of Mississippi State University
    SEJC names The Reflector ‘Best in South’