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UT Tyler students win awards at TIPA

University of Texas at Tyler journalism students surpassed the 100-award mark after receiving 23 awards on Saturday during an annual statewide conference in San Antonio. 

Students received nine first place awards and judges named faculty member Vanessa Curry Adviser of the Year at the Texas Intercollegiate Press Association Spring Conference. 

“For the first time in my life, I’m speechless,” Curry said upon receiving her award. “Seven years ago, when I first started teaching, I thought I could share my experiences, but I feel I’ve learned more from the students.”

The Adviser of the Year award goes to advisers who show dedication to the students as well as the journalism field.  Out of four candidates, judges selected Curry for the award, due in large part to letters of recommendation from faculty, students and local professionals. 

“She teaches students how to develop a ‘nose for news’…she instills in them a sense of what journalism students do,” said Dr. Alisa White, interim dean of College of Arts and Sciences.

Student editor Erin Buller contributed to the Talon’s accomplishments by receiving seven awards that included a third-place in the live feature writing contest. 

“Every issue of the Patriot Talon is a collaboration and I’m proud of every person on the staff,” Buller said.  “Every award we received reflects well on our ability as journalists and on the University.”

Opinion editor Allen Arrick took home three awards, including first place in opinion page design and critical review. 

“I haven’t been in this field for a very long time, so this experience has been very encouraging,” Arrick said. 

Arrick will join the Tyler Morning Telegraph staff this summer as an editorial intern. 

Overall, the Patriot Talon has received 115 TIPA awards since 1999.  This year, the students won nine first-place awards, three second-place honors, six third-place awards and four honorable mentions.

Fifty-one schools statewide attended the three-day conference held every spring.  Students competed in a variety of on-site contests such as feature writing, live sporting contests, photography and public relations writing. Schools also submit previously published material for judging. 

The list of winners and their awards consist of:

  • Erin Buller — first for ad design and news feature story; second for in-depth reporting; third for onsite feature writing, page one design, sports page design and honorable mention for headline writing.
  • Allen Arrick — first for critical review and opinion page design and third for editorial writing.
  • Travis Webb — first for ad design; second for sports news story and sports feature story and third for sports page design.
  • Michelle Morse — first for sports action photo and sports feature photo.
  • Ricky Ashby — first for editorial cartoon.
  • Jessica Chiles — first for information graphic.
  • Angier Crawford — honorable mention for photo illustration
  • Brantley Essary — third for feature photo.
  • Jennifer Toon — honorable mention for sports feature photo.
  • Will McDonald –- first for feature photo. 
  • Patriot Talon Staff — honorable mention for special section/edition.





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