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UNCP student publications rake in awards

March 18, 2010

UNC Pembroke’s student newspaper and student literary magazine won top honors in the 2010 North Carolina College Media Association (NCMA) competition among North Carolina colleges and universities with more than 6,000 students.
Pine NeedleThe Pine Needle’s Web site won Best of Show Online News Site.  

The Aurochs literary magazine won Best of Show for a Literary Magazine. Its editor was Stephanie Heather Leigh Ann Hammond.

Adam Tex Hill won first place for his work of nonfiction for the magazine. Craig Wilson won honorable mention for fiction.
The Indianhead yearbook won two honorable mention awards: Joel Beachum for photography and current Editor Tiffany Schmidt for student life copy.

The awards were presented at the NCMA conference in late February. It was the first year for the contest and UNCP competed with the state’s largest universities, including UNC-Chapel Hill and NC State University.

Dr. Judy Curtis, a faculty member in the Department of Mass Communication, has served as faculty advisor to The Pine Needle for the past eight years.

“We are thrilled with this statewide recognition for our students,” Dr. Curtis said. “They devote tremendous time and take pride in making The Pine Needle print edition and its Web site great sources for excellence in news coverage.

“Last year, the paper won first place and Outstanding Sports Section from the American Scholastic Press Association.”

The Aurochs is UNCP’s annual student publication of poetry, art and literature. Dr. Karen Helgeson, a faculty member in the English and Theatre Department, has served as the publication’s only faculty advisor during its nine years of existence.

English and Theatre Department Chair Dr. Mark Canada said the award reflects hard work and continued improvement.

Aurochs“I am thrilled—but not surprised—by this award.  I know that Dr. Helgeson and her editors put a great deal of work into this magazine, and it’s wonderful to see that hard work pay off with this kind of recognition.”

The Pine Needle Web editor is Shawn McCain, a junior computer science major from Laurinburg, N.C. The assistant Web editor is Chang Lin, a sophomore computer science major, also from Laurinburg.

McCain’s newest development for the Web site is an RSS feed, which gives anyone the ability to download the latest issue's top stories to their iPhones or other smart phones.
In addition to news from the print edition of The Pine Needle, the Web site offers podcasts by Electronic News Editor Dustin Porter, a freshman studying mass communication from Lumberton, N.C., and video news packages by Web Video Editor Charles Grant Merritt, a junior mass communication major from Whiteville, N.C. There is also a Facebook page and a Twitter stream.
The Pine Needle print edition earned two honorable mention awards: Editor-in-Chief Wade Allen, a senior mass communication major from Rutherfordton, N.C., for news writing and Layout Editor Kaleh Myers, a junior mass communication major from Lumberton, for design.