Award
THE NATIONAL PRESS CLUB

Accepts entries starting
Entry Deadline
Decision Date
Ceremony Date
Entry Fee (See Details)
Monetary or Material Award (See Details)

About the Award

The Hearst Journalism Awards Program, was founded in 1960, to provide support, encouragement, and assistance to journalism education at the college and university level. The program awards scholarships to students for outstanding performance in college-level journalism, with matching grants to the students' schools. The 54th annual program offering up to $500,000 in awards, consists of five monthly writing competitions, two photojournalism competitions, three broadcast news competitions (one in radio and two in television), and four multimedia competitions - with championship finals in all divisions.

Participation in the program is open to undergraduate journalism majors currently enrolled in ACEJMC - accredited domestic universities. An exception to the journalism major rule is made for students entering the photojournalism competitions. Entrants must be actively involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs or produced newscasts or multimedia pieces that can be submitted in our writing, photojournalism, broadcast news and/or multimedia competitions.

The William Randolph Hearst Foundation was established by its namesake, publisher William Randolph Hearst, in 1948 under California non-profit laws, exclusively for educational and charitable purposes. Since then, The Hearst Foundations have contributed more than $925 million in the areas of education, health care, social services, and the arts in every state.

Writing Guidelines

  • Each university may submit two entrants' work per writing competition.
  • A competition entry must be a single article written by a single undergraduate journalism major (or recent journalism graduate). Only single bylines are allowed.
  • Entries must have been disseminated in print or online or both in a campus or professional publication.
  • Articles must be appropriate for the competition in which they are submitted, and must be produced and published within the time limitations specified.
  • If a story has a credit line, the entrant must include a statement describing the writing, reporting or editing work contributed by the person(s) cited in the credit line.
  • Sidebars, subordinate in length and content to the article submitted, written by the same entrant on the same topic and published the same day, will be considered part of a single entry.
  • If the entry is from a professional publication, it must be verified in an accompanying letter by the publication's editor attesting that the entry is student work with minimal editing and no editor rewriting.
  • Corrections and clarifications: If a correction was published or issued online after the original story was presented to the audience, the correction or clarification must be submitted as well.
  • A student may enter multiple writing competitions with the following exceptions: if the entrant wins first place, if the entrant qualifies for the Championship, or if the entrant places twice in the top five.
  • An entrant who has won first place in the Writing Championship is not eligible to compete in future writing competitions.
  • An entry submitted once may not be resubmitted in any other competition or in any other competition year.

Competitions and Deadlines

FEATURE WRITING
Creative feature writing: color or mood article covering news, business, feature or entertainment as opposed to a conventional news story or personality profile. Sidebars subordinate in length and content to the article may be included.

All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from October 1, 2013 through November 1, 2014.

DEADLINE: Entries must be received by Tuesday, November 4, 2014

ENTERPRISE REPORTING
Original reporting – including explanatory and investigative journalism across any topic. If from a series, one article of the series may be submitted but must be accompanied by not more than one page summarizing the remaining articles and describing resultant actions, if any. Sidebars subordinate in length and content to the article may be included.

All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from December 1, 2013 through December 8, 2014.

DEADLINE: Entries must be received by Tuesday, December 9, 2014

SPORTS WRITING
A news, feature story or commentary in sports, which must relate to an event or issue, not to a sports personality. Sidebars subordinate in length and content to the article may be included.

All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from February 1, 2014 through January 26, 2015.

DEADLINE: Entries must be received by Tuesday, January 27, 2015

PERSONALITY/PROFILE WRITING
A personality sketch of an individual on or off campus.

All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from March 1, 2014 through March 9, 2015.

DEADLINE: Entries must be received by Tuesday, March 10, 2015

BREAKING NEWS WRITING
Entries should be a report of an event written under deadline pressure. The entry should clearly demonstrate how quickly and accurately the entrant used available journalism tools to cover the story, with emphasis on a demonstrated use of real-time reporting. The article must be a major coverage of the event, and not a sidebar, analysis, etc.

All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from March 1, 2014 through April 13, 2015.

DEADLINE: Entries must be received by Tuesday, April 14, 2015

NATIONAL WRITING CHAMPIONSHIP
This event is open to eight selected finalists from the writing competitions: five first-place winners and three finalists who placed highest in their combined top two scores.

Notable Winners

First Prize: “Promise to Renew” by Sara Neufeld of The Hechinger Report and NJ Spotlight

Jury

In 1960, Randolph A. Hearst and his brother William R. Hearst, Jr. named the first program judges. The judges are professional journalists/editors whose valuable time and talents are generously volunteered to the program each year. Over the course of their three-year terms, they judge the work of thousands of students across the country. Judges are sent the entry materials and rate the work based on a point system. The assigned points are then sent to the Foundation where they're compiled and the students are ranked and notified of their placements. The following is the list of judges who evaluate the monthly and Championship entries in the writing, photojournalism, television, radio, and multimedia competitions of the 2014-2015 Hearst Journalism Awards Program. The program thanks the judges for this immeasurable contribution to the future of journalism.

1. Art Brisbane, retired Editor & Publisher, Knight Ridder Newspapers

2. Nicole Carroll, VP, News and Executive Editor, Arizona Republic, AZ

3. Mike Leary, Senior Vice President and Editor, San Antonio Express-News, TX

Writing entries are judged based on the following criteria:

  • Quality of the writing and the reporting that supports it
  • Stories must be well defined and framed clearly
  • Knowledge of subject
  • Understandability
  • Clarity
  • Reporting depth
  • Construction
  • Originality

Monetary/Material Award Details

1st place - $5,000
2nd place - $4,000
3rd place - $3,000
finalists - $1,500
Article of the Year - $1,000
Best Reporting Technique - $1,000

Eligibility Requirements

You must be an undergraduate journalism major attending an ASJMC-accredited domestic, undergraduate journalism program at the time your entry was published/aired/posted. An exception to the journalism major rule is made for students entering the photo competitions.

Feature Writing: All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from October 1, 2013 through November 1, 2014.

Enterprise Reporting: All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from December 1, 2013 through December 8, 2014.

Sports Writing: All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from February 1, 2014 through January 26, 2015.

Personality/Profile Writing: All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from March 1, 2014 through March 9, 2015.

Breaking News Writing: All articles must be disseminated in print or online or both from March 1, 2014 through April 13, 2015.

Entry Fee Details

Required Material

Entry Format

  • Competition entries are submitted by uploading entry materials to our online application by the chair or administering faculty member of the accredited journalism department at http://compentry.hearstawards.org. Login codes are provided by the program office. If you have not received a login code, please contact Program Director Jan Watten:[email protected] or 415-908-4565.
  • Fill out online entry form with the entrant's name, address, phone number, e-mail, article name, publication name, dissemination date.
  • Upload article.
  • Upload letter from the editor (if applicable) and/or any other additional information under supporting materials.
  • The Program will be accepting online entries only. Entry procedures may be obtained from the department of journalism at participating colleges or universities.

Rules for Entry

  • Only member colleges and universities of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communications
  • (ASJMC) with accredited journalism-mass communication programs, and located in the United States or its possessions, are eligible to participate.
  • No more than two contestants from each university may enter each competition except in the Team Multimedia Storytelling competition.
  • Each participating school selects the two students per competition who are eligible to enter.
  • Students who participate in the writing, broadcast news and/or multimedia competitions must be duly enrolled, undergraduate majors in the accredited unit at the time the entry is published, aired or posted. An exception is made for photo entrants who may be from outside of the accredited unit.
  • Spring, summer or fall 2014 graduates may enter the contests in the 2014-2015 program year. The spring or summer 2014 graduates would NOT be eligible to complete in the 2015 National Championship. The entries must have been published/aired/posted before students were graduated.
  • Pre-majors are eligible to enter as long as the entrant confirms the intention to declare a major in the accredited unit and the school verifies this fact. (This rule does not apply to students entering the photo competitions--they no longer have to be journalism majors to enter). Entrants have to be enrolled at least half-time and may not enter the competition in more than three contest years.
  • Student entrants must be actively involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs, produced newscasts, or produced multimedia postings that can be submitted in our monthly competitions.
  • The competitions are not open to high school students, graduate students, or undergraduate journalism majors who have had one year or more of full-time professional experience-or its equivalent-when the entry is published, produced or posted. (This includes multiple internships if the time totals twelve months or more).
  • STUDY ABROAD: Students who are majors in the accredited unit but are enrolled in an authorized international study-abroad program and receiving credit from their home universities are also eligible.
  • INTERNSHIPS: Because an internship may take place at any time during the calendar year, a student may be declared full-time during an internship in any summer, semester or quarter. An internship means a position in any mass medium or in a professional capacity in journalism communications.
  • A writing entrant may not enter another writing competition after receiving a first place scholarship or two second through fifth place scholarships.
  • A photo entrant may not enter another photo competition after receiving first through fifth place in any of the two photo competitions.
  • A broadcast entrant may not enter another broadcast competition after receiving first through fifth place in any of the broadcast competitions.
  • A multimedia entrant may not enter another multimedia competition after receiving first place in any of the multimedia competitions.
  • An entrant who has won first place in the writing, photojournalism, radio broadcast, television broadcast or multimedia Championships is not eligible to compete in future competitions in the same category.

Contact Information

Program Director
Jan Watten
[email protected]
415-908-4565

Join the AMI Mailing List