JOURNALISM STUDENTS: APPLY FOR A $2,500 SCHOLARSHIP

Attention college journalists: The Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists (MNSPJ) is now accepting applications for its 2018 student scholarship. This year, MNSPJ will award one $2,500 scholarship to a student pursuing a career in broadcast, print, online or visual journalism. A second winner will receive a $700 stipend to attend SPJ’s Excellence in Journalism, an annual national conference for professional and college journalists that will be held Sept. 27-29 in Baltimore.

Applicants must either be enrolled in a post-secondary institution in Minnesota or have graduated from a high school in Minnesota and be enrolled in college elsewhere. Preference will be given to Society of Professional Journalists members.

Click here to submit an application form –- the first step. Email the additional application materials to minnesota.spj@gmail.com. Here’s what’s required:

Application form, which can be found here
Resume
College transcript
Letter of recommendation
Essay (limited to 500 words): Why have you chosen journalism as a career?
Up to six samples of work via a link to your portfolio, a PDF of clips or story URLs

Applications must be received by March 31, 2018. No late submissions will be accepted. The scholarship winners will be announced prior to MNSPJ’s annual Page One Awards banquet, where recipients will receive their awards.

Questions? Email minnesota.spj@gmail.com.

PAGE ONE AWARDS NOW ACCEPTING ENTRIES: DEADLINE 2/23!

The Minnesota Professional Chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (MN SPJ) recognizes the best in Minnesota journalism each year with its annual Page One Awards.

As always, a few minor changes have been made to this year’s contest. In particular, we’ve made revisions to certain categories in the Newspaper division in response to feedback from our members. The new categories are:

  1. A division of the Enterprise/In-Depth category into single story and series categories, to better showcase the best in both types of work.
  2. A revision to the Arts Criticism/Review category (new last year) to allow an individual journalist to be judged on the strength of a body of work, rather than a single story. Journalists can now enter up to three examples of their work. This change has been applied in both the Newspaper and Online divisions.
  3. A division of the Best Sports Story category to two new categories: Best Sports News Story and Best Sports Feature Story, to allow us to celebrate more of the great sports journalism done in Minnesota.

This year, MNSPJ has elected to hold the price of a contest entry steady at $22 — the same as last year.

SPJ_Vertical_Web

Journalists working for all print, broadcast and online news outlets in Minnesota (or news outlets in neighboring states that cover Minnesota) are eligible to enter. All work published or broadcast during the 2017 calendar year is eligible. Entries must be submitted by Friday, February 23. 

Contest winners will be honored at MN SPJ’s Page One Banquet, an annual spring event celebrating excellence in Minnesota journalism. The date and location for the banquet will be announced later.

Important Links:

Please contact MN SPJ with any questionsminnesota.spj@gmail.com

2018 PAGE ONE AWARDS: CONTEST GUIDELINES

GENERAL GUIDELINES

  • The fee is $22 per entry.
  • Entries must be submitted no later than Friday, February 23, 2018.
  • All work published or broadcast during the 2017 calendar year is eligible.
  • Journalists (including freelancers and contract employees) working for all print, broadcast and online news outlets in Minnesota (or news outlets in neighboring states that cover Minnesota) are eligible to enter.
  • An individual may submit only one entry per category. Exceptions: 1) if a second entry is a multiple-byline entry; or 2) if it is submitted by his/her employer because they could not agree on a single entry.
  • Entries will be judged by journalism professionals outside Minnesota.
  • Judges may move an entry from one category to another.
  • Up to three winners may be chosen for each category. Judges may choose not to name a winner in any category.
  • Entries will not be returned.
  • Awards Presentation: Winners will be announced in the spring of 2018 and honored during MN SPJ’s annual Page One Awards Banquet. Date and location, TBD.

SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS

  • NEWSPAPER, ONLINE & PHOTOGRAPHY ENTRIES must be submitted online.
  • FOR PRINT ENTRIES (Newspaper and Magazine): Entrants should submit a link to the online article or a PDF of the news/magazine page on which the story appeared. The date of publication should be visible.
  • FOR NEWSPAPER AND MAGAZINE “BEST ISSUE” CATEGORIES: entries may be submitted by mail. TWO COPIES of each issue must be submitted in an 8 1/2-by-11-inch folder or envelope. Please write category name on outside of folder.
  • FOR GRAPHICS/PHOTOGRAPHY CATEGORIES: Entrants should submit a PDF of the news/magazine page on which the art appeared, or a link to the art published on an online news site. The date of publication should be visible.
  • FOR TV ENTRIES: Entrants should submit a URL where video can be viewed (preferred) or entries may be submitted on a DVD (please include TWO COPIES).
  • FOR RADIO ENTRIES: Entrants should submit a link to the work online (preferred) or entries may be submitted by mail on a CD (please include TWO COPIES).

CLICK HERE to access the contest submission form

2018 PAGE ONE AWARDS: CONTEST CATEGORIES

1. NEWSPAPER

a. Spot News (One or more stories covering a single spot news event)

b. Meeting/Planned news event (One or more stories covering a single news event that was known in advance.)

c. Feature (A single feature story)

d. Enterprise/In-Depth (A single story) (One story that reflects a reporter’s ingenuity, use of sources or special research that help the reader understand a situation beyond information provided in a typical news story)

e. Enterprise/In-Depth (Series ) (Multiple stories that reflect a reporter’s ingenuity, use of sources or special research that help the reader understand a situation beyond information provided in a typical news story)

f. Investigative (One or more stories a single topic or news event containing information not readily available to the news media or public and obtained through reporter initiative)

g. Business Story (A single news story or feature focusing on business-related news)

h. Sports News Story (A single story on sports-related news)

i. Sports Feature Story (A single feature story on a sports-related topic)

j. Arts & Entertainment Story (A single news story or feature focusing on arts & entertainment-related news)

k. Arts Criticism/Review (One to three stories that illustrate a journalist’s competence in criticizing or reviewing performance, musical groups, restaurants or other similar entities/events)

l. Column (A single column written for any section including but not limited to general interest, business or sports)

m. Editorial (A single editorial)

n. Graphics/Art and illustration (Original artwork, graphs, diagrams, maps or other visual elements that illustrate a story)

o. Page Design (A single page design: taking into account layout and page composition, use of headlines, art, graphics etc.)

p. Headlines (A collection of up to three (3) headlines, submitted along with the accompanying stories)

q. Best issue (Based on reporting, writing, photography, graphics/illustration, layout, copyhandling, etc.)

2. MAGAZINE

a. Best Profile Story (A single profile story)

b. Best Feature Story (A single feature story)

c. Best Department (A magazine component appearing under the same heading and possibly, but not always, written by different writers); send 3 unique examples

d. Best Column (A magazine component appearing under the same heading and always written by the same author); send 3 unique examples

e. Best Cover (A single magazine cover)

f. Best Page Design (A full story or feature layout, single page, two-page or double-truck design)

g. Graphics/Art and illustration (Original artwork, graphs, diagrams, maps or other visual elements that illustrate a story)

h. Best issue (Based on writing, photography, graphics/illustration, layout)

3. TELEVISION

a. Spot/Breaking news (coverage of an unscheduled event broadcast within 24 hours; may be a single story or compilation of coverage on a single event)

b. Hard News report (best coverage of a news-related topic; may include in-depth, planned coverage of a single event, or enterprise reporting)

c. Feature (single story done for some other factor than timeliness–may include profile, human interest, or trend stories)

d. Special Project/In-Depth series (a single report or series of reports going in-depth on a particular subject, helping the viewer understand a situation beyond information in a typical news story)

e. Investigative (One or more stories containing information not readily available to the news media or public and obtained through reporter initiative)

f. Newscast (One regularly-scheduled newscast airing on any day in the contest year. The entry should represent the station’s best work in news content, execution, and overall presentation)

g. Meeting/Planned Event feature (One or more stories covering a single news event that was known in advance.)

4. RADIO

a. Spot/Breaking news (coverage of an unscheduled event broadcast within 24 hours; may be a single story or compilation of coverage on a single event)

b. Hard News report (best coverage of a news-related topic; may include in-depth, planned coverage of a single event, or enterprise reporting)

c. Feature (single story done for some other factor than timeliness–may include profile, human interest, or trend stories)

d. Special Project/In-Depth series (a single report or series of reports going in-depth on a particular subject, helping the viewer understand a situation beyond information in a typical news story)

e. Investigative (One or more stories containing information not readily available to the news media or public and obtained through reporter initiative)

f. Newscast (One regularly-scheduled newscast airing on any day in the contest year. The entry should represent the station’s best work in news content, execution, and overall presentation)

g. Meeting/Planned Event feature (One or more stories covering a single news event that was known in advance.)

5. ONLINE

a. Best Website (Best use of a website for providing news to an online audience. Judges will look at areas such as ease of navigation, creative design concepts, good organization and degree to which online resources enhance reporting.)

b. Best single news story (Best online coverage of a single news story or event)

c. Best continuing coverage (Two or more online reports demonstrating ongoing coverage of a news event; including original or web-only content)

d. Arts & Entertainment. (Single arts and entertainment-themed feature)

e. Arts Criticism/Review (One to three stories that illustrate a journalist’s competence in criticizing or reviewing performance, musical groups, restaurants or other similar entities/events)

f. Best use of multimedia (Demonstrates outstanding use of photos, galleries, video, and/or audio to enhance original story)

g. Best social media account – Individual (For a social media account on any platform run by one journalist that best demonstrates an understanding of audience, an appreciation for the strengths and weaknesses of the platform, while showing a commitment to innovation and an adherence to SPJ’s Code of Ethics)

h. Best social media account – Institutional (For a social media account run by multiple journalists that best demonstrates an understanding of audience, an appreciation for the strengths and weaknesses of the platform, while showing a commitment to innovation and an adherence to SPJ’s Code of Ethics)

i. Best news video (Single video, or series of videos on the same subject, produced to appear online-only)

j. Best newsroom blog (submit URL for blog, judged on overall excellence in news coverage, affiliated with a newspaper, magazine, TV or radio station)

k. Best independent news blog (submit URL for blog, judged on overall excellence in news coverage, not affiliated with a newspaper, magazine, TV or radio station)

l. Meeting/Planned Event Feature (One or more stories covering a single news event that was known in advance.)

6. PHOTOGRAPHY

a. Best News Photography (Best use of photography in news stories. Submit a collection of up to three (3) news photos.)

b. Best Feature Photography (Best use of photography in feature stories. Submit a collection of up to three (3) feature photos.)

c. Best Portrait Photography (Best use of portrait photography. Submit a collection of up to three (3) portrait photos.)

d. Best Sports Photography (Best use of photography in sports stories. Submit a collection of up to three (3) sports photos.)

7. SPECIAL AWARDS

a. Young Journalist of the Year (Award given to outstanding journalist in any medium with less than 10 years experience; submit three examples of work and letter of nomination)

b. Journalist of the Year (Award given to outstanding journalist in any medium with 10 or more years of experience; submit three examples of work and letter of nomination)

c. Story of the Year (Award for general excellence in any medium, covering a single story or news event submit up to three examples of work and letter of nomination)

d. Best Use of Public Records (Award for excellence in any medium covering a story or news event where use of public records played a role in getting and telling the story; submit up three examples of work and a narrative letter explaining work and its use of public records)

e. Best Beat Reporting (Award recognizing an enterprising reporter in any medium who follows a single subject or topic throughout the year. Entries should include three examples of reporting and a narrative letter explaining any other relevant facts a judge may use to determine the state’s top beat reporter.)

Entry Tiers

  • Newspaper [50,000+ circulation]
  • Newspaper [LESS than 50,000 circulation]
  • Magazine
  • Television [50+ newsroom employees]
  • Television [Fewer than 50 newsroom employees]
  • Radio
  • Online
  • Photography [All photo entries will be judged against each other regardless of publication size]

CLICK HERE to access the contest submission form

Hate in the Headlines: A seminar for journalists

Join us for a free seminar on covering the rise in hate crimes and clashes. On Friday, Jan. 19, MNSPJ and the Minnesota Journalism Center will host “Hate in the Headlines,” an afternoon workshop at the University of Minnesota.

Dig into the latest research on this timely topic from the Southern Poverty Law Center and ProPublica. Hear from law enforcement, legal experts and victims of hate crimes. You won’t want to miss this valuable training!

This workshop is free. But space is limited, so registration is required. Register online at z.umn.edu/hateintheheadlines.

Minnesota Sampler: A bobcat in greater Mankato

 

A contact shared a video on social media that made reporter Kristine Goodrich pretty sure she had a story.

It featured a young man in the Mankato area using a clever contraption to free a bobcat from a trap.

Goodrich marveled at how the young man protected himself. And then she wondered: How rare are bobcats around here?

The result is a story that ran in early January in the Mankato Free Press that’s the latest subject of Minnesota Sampler, a periodic feature from MNSPJ that showcases journalism from across the state.

“I was disappointed and considered scrapping the idea when the trapper in the viral video didn’t want to be named because he said he feared he would be harassed by people who are opposed to trapping,” Goodrich said via e-mail. “I decided to still run with it and use a [Department of Natural Resources] expert as the principal source concentrating on my second reaction.”

Some vetting was required, Goodrich said, since there have been some prank claims over the years about cat sightings. A colleague at the Free Press investigated a photo of a cougar a few years ago and determined it was a hoax.

Others are real. Last year, Goodrich wrote a story about a cougar sighting in Blue Earth.

Goodrich has worked at the Free Press for two year. She spent her first decade in journalism as a reporter and then co-editor at Press Publications, which publishes weekly papers in eastern portion of the Twin Cities.

Goodrich studied journalism at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

Why journalism?

“I suppose above all else it is the opportunity to talk with amazing people ranging from experts who are their wisdom to everyday citizens who do something inspiring,” Goodrich said in an e-mail. “And then there’s the challenge and reward of crafting stories.”