Posted by Mary Wimberley on 2007-03-16

Samford University student journalists won 18 awards, including eight first place honors, at the annual convention of the Southeast Journalism Conference (SEJC). Samford's total was more than that received by any of the 30 competing schools.

Megan Voelkel, a December Samford graduate, was named co-winner of the College Journalist of the Year award. Voelkel was cited for her writing, potential, overall quality and other aspects of professionalism. She was editor-in-chief of Samford's Crimson newspaper during 2005-06 and assistant art director of Exodus magazine.

Samford's Exodus was named co-winner of the best student magazine award. Judges gave the publication an "excellent" rating in all 10 judging criteria categories, calling it "an outstanding publication…great product." The 64-page color magazine is published annually. Kendra Buckles was managing editor.

Other first place award winners from Samford were: Kimberly Holland, arts and entertainment writer; Brittany Raymond, news-editorial arts/illustrator; Jenny Berryhill, magazine page designer; Ashley McCleery, magazine writer and media law; and Whitney Farmer, radio journalist.

Samford finalists in various categories were: Annie Murphree, feature writer; Emily Mullins, opinion-editorial writer; Christopher Smith, sports writer; Nick Holdbrooks, news graphic designer and info graphics; Andy Searles, news-editorial artist/illustrator; Lauren Welty, advertising staffer; Lauren Gardner, journalism research paper; Emily Sparks, media ethics; and Jessica Garner, public relations.

Samford hosted the SEJC annual convention, held Jan. 25-27.

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About Samford University – Samford University is a premier nationally ranked private university deeply rooted in its Christian mission. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th oldest institution of higher education in the United States. U.S. News & World Report ranks Samford 4th among regional universities in the South. Samford enrolls 5,619 students from 44 states, the District of Columbia and 29 other countries in its 10 academic units: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy, and public health. Samford also fields 17 NCAA Division I teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference.