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K-State Today

March 19, 2020

Student broadcasters/podcasters honored in national and statewide awards

Submitted by Steve Smethers, Tom Hallaq and Ian Punnett

Two K-State seniors have won Awards of Excellence in the 2020 Broadcast Education Association's Festival of Arts Competition.

Bri Womack and Zach St. Clair were honored for documentaries that were entered into the worldwide competition, which annually draws about 1,500 entries. Womack wrote, produced and voiced her documentary for the BEA radio/podcasting competition, "Women in… Crime," which covered the gendered conception of serial killers in the U.S. St. Clair's production placed in the educational program category, and was a historic focus on Lecco's "Lemma," a hip-hop specialty show in Boston in the late 80s.

Both productions aired on student-operated KSDB-FM and were produced as part of the station's growing focus on podcasting as a viable extension of radio broadcasting.

"This is just the beginning of our growth as a radio station and a podcasting program," said Ian Punnett, K-State professor of practice and KSDB chief operator and faculty adviser, who is also developing a new podcasting class to be taught in the upcoming May intersession. Wildcat 91.9 was the only radio station/podcasting program from all of the colleges and universities in the state of Kansas to be featured at the BEA.

The Kansas Association of Broadcasters has also announced that 23 K-State students won awards in 20 separate competitions in the 2020 KAB student award division.

Students working at KKSU-TV were big award winners, as the student-produced news and public affairs program "MHK All Day" and the weekly newscast "Channel 8 News" garnered awards in the Television Division. Senior Anna Christianson was singled out for excellence in three separate categories, including two first-place finishes that included recognition for the show "MHK All Day." Recent graduates Isabel Lauby and Bridget Howard were recognized twice. Senior Jared Sleppy won awards in both the TV and the radio competitions.

"Our students take great ownership for their journalism, and it shows in the finished product," said Andrew Smith, KKSU-TV news director and journalism professor. "They seek out the interesting and important stories in our community and tell them with balance and integrity. The students at Channel 8 have a long history of excellence and being recognized against their peers is a great honor."

KSDB-FM and KKSU-TV are licensed broadcast stations and are operated by the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications.

In the radio/podcasting division, KSDB-FM afternoon drive news anchor Trey Kuhlmann received two first-place awards and was among 11 radio/podcasting honorees, all part of the Wildcat 91.9 staff.

The complete list of KAB award winners


Public Affairs Program — First place, "MHK All-Day" with Isabel Lauby, Bridget Howard and Dylan Lierz.

Complete Newscast, three days/week or less — Honorable mention, "MHK All-Day" with Isabel Lauby, Bridget Howard and Dylan Lierz.

Hard News Package — Honorable mention, "Spotlighting Domestic Abuse" by Anna Christianson

Enterprise News Package — Second place, "Silver Lake — A Food Desert Story" by Casey Campbell, Jared Sleppy.

Complete News Package — Honorable mention, "Moped Safety Tips" by Molly Hackett.

Complete Sports Feature — Honorable mention, "Pound the Stone!" by Stephanie Nutt.

Sportscast — First place, K-State Sportscast, "MHK All-Day" for Feb. 14, 2020, by Anna Christianson and Amelia Andrews.

Documentary — Honorable mention, "Hungry Heartland: Arkenburg Farms" by Alex Galey and Jacen Clapp.

Entertainment program — First "MHK All-Day" on Feb. 14, 2020, with Sara Wallace, Anna Christianson and Kaylie McLaughlin.


Promotional Audio — First place, "Climate Change" PSA by Bri Womack.

Hard News Package — First place, "Lt. Gov. Lynn Rogers Budget" by Trey Kuhlmann.

Entertainment News Package: First place: Hale Yeah News, Trey Kulhmann 2nd Place: Nintendo Tour, Zandt Durham.

Complete Sports Feature — First place: "Sports Talk" with Jared Sleepy and Tyler Krenzin; second place, "Sports Talk" with Kyle Helie and Logan Henricks.

DJ Radio Personality — Second place, Claire Todd; honorable mention, Chase Swenson and Bret Huntington.

Sports Play-By-Play — Second place for K-State vs. OU women's game by Jared Sleppy.

Documentary — Second place for "The Women in . . . Crime" Podcast by Bri Womack; honorable mention for "Haunted Kansas" by Laura Keener.