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Loyola student journalist wins national honors for Hollywood South feature story

Loyola press release - May 6, 2013

A story written by Loyola University New Orleans student journalist Shannon Donaldson detailing how college students are reaping the benefits of a booming Hollywood South film industry won national recognition May 1 in the Society of Professional Journalists National Mark of Excellence Awards. The student journalism competition recognizes the best in collegiate journalism.

The Society of Professional Journalists named Donaldson’s story on the New Orleans film industry in the top three feature stories nationwide among small colleges and universities with fewer than 5,000 students. Donaldson’s national finalist feature story, “N.O. film industry breaks out,” first appeared in Loyola’s student newspaper, The Maroon.

“Loyola student journalists shine on a national stage, and their professional-caliber work demonstrates the kind of journalism training we are proud to offer,” said Sonya F. Duhé, Ph.D., Loyola professor and director of the School of Mass Communication.

The national Mark of Excellence Award winners are chosen from the first-place category winners in each of the Society of Professional Journalists’ 12 regions, and the awards are judged by professionals with at least three years of journalism experience. This year, student journalists submitted more than 4,600 total entries.

“I just can’t say enough good things about Shannon or the Maroon staff. The work being done at Loyola is amazing, and we are lucky to have such talented student journalists working for us,” said Michael Giusti ‘00, M.B.A. ‘12, Loyola Student Media adviser and instructor.

Several fellow student journalists writing for The Maroon and Wolf Magazine also won top regional honors this year for writing and photography from the Society of Professional Journalists Region 12 chapter, which covers student publications in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Tennessee.

For high-resolution photos or to schedule interviews, contact Mikel Pak, Loyola’s associate director of public affairs.