• BEST IN STATE—Senior Courtney Schoen Lewis was named Best PR Student in Utah. Story

JCOM celebrates its outstanding students, awards 2011-12 scholarships

April 17th, 2011 Posted in Opinion

By Jess Allen

LOGAN—The folded napkins waited neat and perfect on each plate on the tables around the banquet hall at Hamilton’s, anticipating 100 hungry guests.

It was the annual Department of Journalism & Communication’s annual award banquet, where students, faculty, alumni and guests gathered together to chow down, mingle, reflect on the past year and hear who won what.

“These students are outstanding not only for their GPA’s—and not all of them have all that outstanding GPA’s,” said JCOM department head Ted Pease, “but because of their professional activities, because of their contributions to the department and media professions outside of the classroom, and because of the way they can integrate what we do in the classroom outside in the real world. That’s why they’re outstanding.”

The room was often filled with cheers, laughter and applause Thursday night as JCOM faculty announced 46 outstanding student awards recognizing the students’ achievements and contributions throughout the year, and 20 scholarships totaling more than $21,000.

“It’s cool when people get recognized because I think we work really hard as students,” said Natasha Bodily, who plans to graduate in December. She won both an outstanding award and a $500 scholarship. “We kind of do a lot of things for free in the hopes that it will be worth it one day, so when you get rewarded it kind of validates what you’ve been slaving for.”

With more than 70 JCOM seniors graduating next month, the future was ripe with promise, for students like Bodily, who is nearing completion of her bachelor’s degree in public relations, and is looking forward to two internships in New York City this summer.

“I’m hoping to stay there and get a grown-up job, make money and be a real person,” she said with a laugh.

Bodily was one of many students in the room who were surprised when their name was called. Emily Landeen, a sophomore who received a $700 Josey Barnes Wayman Scholarship for women in broadcasting, was also in a happy state of mind.

“I’m a work-study student,” said Landeen, who works in the JCOM office, “so they handed me a list of the scholarships and I type them all up and I print them out making sure everything’s right.

“There were a few times when I was, like, ‘Wait, [office manager Ashlee Davis] had a list she wouldn’t give me,’ and she would say, ‘I’ll just copy it over or something or I’ll make you a copy.’”

After Pease called her name as a scholarship winner, the confusion over the list made sense, said Landeen, who insisted that she had no idea she was one of the recipients.

Jessica Black, a broadcast news major who wants to work in radio, also had no idea she had been awarded a scholarship until her name was called.

“There was just one form that you fill out for all of them,” Black said, “and then the JCOM board I guess decides who gets what.”

Black, a junior, said she didn’t apply last year but decided this year she would give it a try. “I felt very underqualified and I was, like, ‘Well, I’ll apply but I won’t get anything,’” she said. “I just didn’t think I would.” She clutched the treasured certificate in its envelope—a Marie & Glacus Merrill Scholarship for $700.

Possibly the most surprised—or at least enough so to do a happy dance on her way to get her envelope—was Bailey McMurdie, who received a one-semester, full-ride scholarship of $2,370 as winner of the Deseret Digital Media Scholarship.

“As they were going through, I thought, ‘Aw, I guessing I didn’t get one,’” said McMurdie, who was one of the last winners announced. “I wasn’t expecting the largest one.”

McMurdie said it would have been fabulous to receive any amount, as she pays for her own schooling. Majoring in both creative writing and broadcast journalism, McMurdie is a teaching assistant for Brenda Cooper’s JCOM 2010: Media Smarts class, and also received an award as an outstanding junior.

With the evening ending, rewards and scholarships handed out, and small speeches from faculty and John Allen, dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, the students and faculty seemed happy with how everything went.

“I felt it went great, I felt like it was really fun,” said Landeen. “We had teachers here, we had faculty, all the students. We had a great time. It’s awesome because we all know each other, so it’s a really fun environment.”

Not only was the company good, but so was the food, even for those who with specialty orders.

“I’m a vegetarian so they made something different for me,” Bodily said. “It was really good though it was just like pasta and veggies, it was good.”

• • •

JCOM Departmental Scholarships, 2011-2011

The Deseret Management Corporation Scholarships.
• The Deseret News Scholarship: Catherine Meidell
• The Deseret Book Scholarship: Erika Rasmussen
• The Deseret Digital Media Scholarship: Bailey McMurdie
• The KSL News Scholarship: Landon Hemsley

The Jay W. Glasmann Family Scholarships. Endowed by the former owner of the Ogden Standard-Examiner.
• Megan Allen, Print Journalism
• Natasha Bodily, Public Relations/Print Journalism
• Alexandria S. Evensen, Print Journalism
• Travis Hansen, Public Relations/Print Journalism
• Christian Hathaway, Broadcast Journalism/Photojournalism
• Elisabeth A. Stewart, Print Journalism

The Glacus and Marie Merrill Scholarships. Established in honor of Northern Utah pioneers in radio broadcasting.
• Jordan Allred, Broadcast Journalism/Radio
• Jessica Black, Broadcast Journalism/Radio

The Ogden Standard-Examiner Scholarships. In support of northern Utah journalism.
• Cassidee J. Cline, Print Journalism
• Noelle Johansen, Print Journalism
• Rhett Wilkinson, Print Journalism

The Wilford D. Porter Scholarship. Established in honor of USU’s first journalism professor.
• Jessica Vasil, Public Relations/Corporate Communication

The Salt Lake Tribune Scholarships. Donated by the state’s largest newspaper in support of journalistic excellence.
• Max Parker Dahl, Print Journalism
• Katherine L. Rouse, Print Journalism

The Josey Barnes Wayman Scholarships. Endowed by the first woman TV host in Utah, in support of women in broadcasting.
• Emily Landeen, Broadcast Journalism
• Chanae Weller, Broadcast Journalism

Department of Journalism & Communication
Utah State University

(Presented April 14, 2011)

JCOM Graduates of the Year, 2010-2011
Storee Powell
Courtney Lewis


Outstanding 2011 Graduates in Broadcast Journalism
Whitney Mendivil
Jennifer Stephenson

Outstanding 2010 Graduates in Broadcast Journalism (December 2010)
Shannon Ballard
Cortney Bowen
Michael Doxey
Tazya Williams

Outstanding Seniors in Broadcast Journalism
Landon Hemsley
Ryan Parkinson
Melissa Youngberg

Outstanding Juniors in Broadcast Journalism
Ryan Baylis
Christian Hathaway
Bailey McMurdie


Outstanding 2011 Graduates in Print Journalism
Brendon Butler
Dana Ivins
Benjamin Wood

Outstanding 2010 Graduates in Print Journalism (December 2010)
Caresa Alexander
Storee Powell
Satenik Sargsyan

Outstanding Juniors in Print Journalism
Megan Allen
Cassidee J. Cline
Max Parker Dahl
Noelle Johansen
Catherine Meidell
Kate Rouse

Outstanding 2011 Graduates in Public Relations/Corporate Communication
Alyson Bauer
Natalie Curtis
Cameron Cutler
Jesse D. Dredge
Kayla Hall
Hillary Searle

Outstanding 2010 Graduates in Public Relations/Corporate Communication (December 2010)
Lauren Hong
Courtney Schoen Lewis

Outstanding Seniors in Public Relations/Corporate Communication
Natasha Bodily
Kayla Hall
Travis Hansen
Tessa Karrington
Amber Neil
Chanae Weller

Outstanding Juniors in Public Relations/Corporate Communication
Zachary Bosch
Katie Landgren
Stephanie Lewis
Mckell Mendenhall
Erica Rasmussen
Clelia Rivera

Outstanding Seniors in Agricultural Communication & Journalism:
Michelle Hatch
Colby Mower

Outstanding Juniors in Agricultural Communication & Journalism
Rachel Kenley
Kennedy Speirs

Special Service Awards
Jordan Allred, Aggie Radio student station manager — For Dedicated Service to Aggie Radio
Friend Weller, Utah Public Radio — For Dedicated Service to Aggie Radio
Jane Koerner, instructor — For Dedicated Service to the Department of Journalism & Communication
Shane Krebs, adjunct instructor — For Dedicated Service to the Department of Journalism & Communication


Tags: , ,

  1. 2 Responses to “JCOM celebrates its outstanding students, awards 2011-12 scholarships”

  2. By Tessa Karrington on Apr 18, 2011

    Great article! I just wanted to point out that my last name is \\"Karrington\\" instead of \\"Kerrington,\\" and I\\\’m a senior, not a junior. Thanks for writing this though. I\\\’m glad so many people got awards! Like Natasha Bodily said, it really does make us feel like our hard work gets noticed.

  3. By Jess Allen on Apr 25, 2011

    Thank you, I’m glad you liked it! Sorry that your name was misspelled, we just used the program that was used at the banquet and thought they were all turned in correctly. We will take care of that. Sorry again and thank you for being understanding!

Sorry, comments for this entry are closed at this time.