Student Newspaper, The College VOICE,
Earns Multiple Awards
NJ: The College VOICE, Mercer County Community College's
student newspaper, came out a big winner in this year's Mark
of Excellence Awards competition sponsored by The Society
of Professional Journalists (SPJ).
The VOICE won six awards, including being selected
as a national finalist in the Best All-Around Non-Daily Student
Newspaper category. In the regional awards, which encompass
two-year schools from New England to the New Jersey tri-state
area, The VOICE took first place for Best All-Around
Non-Daily Student Newspaper; plus first, second and third
in General News Reporting; and first place in In-Depth Reporting.
At the regional level, Mercer student Matt Williams won first
place in General News Reporting for his article "Hate
crime hits too close to home." Sara Gatling, The VOICE's
editor in chief from fall 2009 to spring 2010, earned
second place in the General News Reporting category for her
article entitled "Exxxotica draws 18,000 despite mayor's
attempts to make it go away." Gatling graduated this
past May and will transfer to Columbia University in the fall.
The third place award in General News Reporting went to Sarina
Prior for her article "Where have all the young men gone?"
student newspaper staff are pictured with Good Morning America
cast members during a College Media Adviser's convention in
New York City. From left are 2009 Editor in Chief Sara Gatling,
MCCC faculty photography advisor Michael Dalton, Good Morning
America's George Stephanopoulos, MCCC faculty advisor Holly
Johnson, Senior Reporter Matt White, current Editor in Chief
Dmitry Gurvits, Good Morning America's Robin Roberts, current
Managing Editor Kelly Smith, Good Morning America's Juju Chang,
and Chief Copy Editor Sarina Prior.
out the regional awards was a first place win for Ronald Russell
III's In-Depth Reporting for the article "More Mercer students
have to take remedial courses." In October The VOICE
will be honored at the SPJ conference in Las Vegas.
VOICE has also been recognized for its in-depth reporting on
Megan's Law. Work by student reporter Daniela Rocha was featured
on NBC News 10 in Philadelphia on the May 25 evening news. The investigative
report included excerpts from Rocha's interview with an incarcerated
sex offender. The full article "As Megan's Law turns 15, are
we any safer?" examined legal and ethical complexities of the
law intended to notify citizens when a sex offender moves into the
area. The piece included interviews with lawyers, law enforcement
officials, and Megan's mother.
After a period of inactivity The College VOICE was reinvigorated
when Associate Professor of English Holly Johnson (then Mathews)
stepped in as adviser in spring 2008. Work from The VOICE
has been honored not only with Mark of Excellence awards, but in
2009 it earned six New Jersey Press Foundation awards including
the award for General Excellence.
In February of 2010 The VOICE was ranked one of the top 20
most read college newspapers online in the country, as tracked by
College Publisher. The VOICE was the only community college
ranked in the top twenty at the time. In a single day (February
28) The VOICE's online edition received more than 11,000
individual page reads. Several of The VOICE's investigative articles
have been picked up by national media outlets including The Chronicle
of Higher Education and The Huffington Post.
VOICE is online at www.mcccvoice.org.
MCCC Home Page