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Student Journalists honored by KPA as most valuable members

Peter Baniak presents Collin Overton with most valuable member award

LOUISVILLE, Ky.--Student journalists from around Kentucky, including staffers of Eastern Kentucky University’s Eastern Progress, were recognized by the Kentucky Press Association as the organization’s Most Valuable Members during the annual conference.

An award usually given to professionals at news outlets in Kentucky, outgoing KPA president Peter Baniak, editor at the Lexington Herald-Leader, and other board members honored student journalists of the Kentucky Intercollegiate Press Association. Baniak, in his remarks at the awards banquet on Friday, Jan. 25, in Louisville, said student journalists are shining light on open records and meetings violations, some going to court over the matters. Many college campuses have slashed funds from independent student papers’ financial accounts, yet the students continue to hold their administrations accountable.

“In other words, Kentucky’s student journalists are raising hell,” Baniaksaid. “I love it, and it gives me great hope for the future of journalism.”

Eastern Progress editor-in-chief Collin Overton accepted the paper’s award on the staff’s behalf.

“This past year EKU has demanded a lot from us, whether it be just reporting the facts or holding the institution accountable,” Overton said. “In the budget crisis we had to report the impact, but we also had to keep an eye on the decision-making process.”

“It's good to see KPA recognize student work," adviser Tricia Fulks Kelley said. "We can't turn a blind eye to what's happening at our higher edinstitutions across the state. The students are the ones on the front lines serving as watchdogs for their campus communities."

Published on March 06, 2019

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