JOY Winners Announced!


Marsha Kalkowski

It is with great pleasure that I announce the results of the Nebraska Student Journalist of the Year contest.

Nebraska has never had so many well qualified candidates for this award.  This made the judging process incredibly difficult.  As a veteran adviser, I would be incredibly humbled to have ANY one of you on my staff. To have made it this far, as a potential Nebraska High School Journalist of the Year, is an accomplishment in itself.  You are a winner already.  A few of you made it clear that your mission and goal was never to win this award, but to champion the cause of freedom of expression or to be a beacon of light for those who need to have their stories shared.  You are all so much more than high school journalists.  You are professionals!  You are writers, designers, photographers, editors, bloggers, innovators, entrepreneurs, visionaries, leaders, motivators, teachers, inspirations and … this year… you are all women of promise, poise and incredible potential.  The mentors and educators who wrote your letters of recommendation hold you in the highest regard.  You have the respect and admiration of your staff members and of your audiences.

Special Congratulations to Omaha Central’s Natalie J. Nepper as the Nebraska Journalist of the Year and to Kamrin P. Baker of Millard West as the Nebraska Runner Up.  Both will be recognized at the Opening Session of NSAA State Journalism Contest in Norfolk on April 25, 2016 and be given their scholarship checks ($500 and $250).  Natalie’s portfolio will go on to represent the state at the national level, and she’ll be recognized in Los Angeles at the JEA/NSPA Spring Convention in April.  She will be eligible for the $3,000 national scholarship or one of the six $800 runner up scholarships at that level.  We wish her the best!

I am grateful to the team of judges from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communication.

Congratulations again to each one of you on your high school journalism accomplishments and best of luck as you finish your senior year, your last deadlines and leave your journalistic footprint on the community.