School of Journalism and New Media

The University of Mississippi

Two student journalists from NewsWatch place first in Southeast Journalism Conference competitions

Posted on: March 1st, 2019 by ldrucker

Congratulations to Matthew Hendley and Madison Scarpino for winning first-place awards in Southeast Journalism Conference competitions.

Hendley, a NewsWatch Ole Miss anchor and correspondent, won first place in the SEJC onsite anchoring competition. Judges said the entries were unusually strong this year, and Hendley, a sophomore, came out on top.

Scarpino, a junior, was named Best TV Hard News Reporter for packages that aired on NewsWatch Ole Miss last year about Hurricane Michael and the Journalism and New Media forum after Ed Meek’s Facebook post. Scarpino was social media producer for NewsWatch last semester.

JNM Professor Nancy Dupont is NewsWatch adviser and has worked with both students.

“They’re both incredibly talented student journalists,” Dupont said. “I’m not surprised that Madison took first place in reporting because she’s an excellent storyteller. Matthew is the one of the best at interpreting the news, but I’m so proud of him for taking first place in anchoring, which is a really competitive category.”

The SEJC conference was Feb. 14-16 at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro near Nashville. For the anchoring onsite category, Hendley was given about 10 minutes to read the script, and then he went on the air for about five minutes reading the script and doing a sign-off in a virtual newsroom. It was a mini-newscast with four or five local Tennessee stories, requiring him to switch from one camera to another after the anchor intro.

“It was neat to see another school’s newsroom,” Hendley said, “though I was not a fan of the virtual newsroom…of everything being painted green! But it was another great experience and an honor that I will always remember.”

Abbie McIntosh, NewsWatch Ole Miss student manager, shared a second-place award with Scarpino in the onsite TV reporting team category.

“Having Madison take home the top prize for Best TV Hard News Reporter made me so happy because I know how hard Madison works on her projects,” McIntosh said. “I was able to witness the work that was put into the packages we submitted for SEJC, and I was beaming with pride, not only as her friend, but as her student manager,” McIntosh said. “And having Matthew take home Best TV Anchor made me grin from ear to ear. Matthew is such a character on the desk and I’m so glad everyone else realized that, too.”

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