Journalism Distinction

Honors students receiving a degree

Pictured above: From left to right, Lynandro Simmons, Chloe Gorman and Jeniece Roman receive department awards during the Honors Convocation on April 29, 2018. Vern Williams photos.

Students and faculty from the Journalism Department have been recognized with various awards and honors. See all department awards at the links below. More details are available on the Journalism Department projects page.



2019: Victoria Bresnahan 

2015: Mackenzie Hurlbert

2015: Juliemar Ortiz


Magazine - Crescent magazine

Region 1 finalist, Best Student Magazine, Crescent magazine

Region 1 finalist, Sports Photography; Luke Molwitz; "Scoring points on campus


Magazine - Crescent magazine

Region 1 finalist, Feature Writing; Sofia Rositani; "Southern animals support students"


Magazine - Crescent magazine 

National Finalist and Regional First Place, Feature Photography; Jacob Waring; "Campus jungle"

Regional Finalist, Non Fiction Magazine Article; Izzy Manzo; "Women in STEM"

Newspaper - Southern News

Regional Finalist, Feature Photography; Izzy Manzo; "Community Gardens."

Regional Finalist, General News Photography; Will Aliou; "Take Back the Night March"


Magazine - Crescent magazine

National Finalist and Regional First Place, Feature Photography; Jefferine Jean-Jacques; "Through the lens"

Finalist, Best Student Magazine; Crescent magazine; Fall 2018 edition

Finalist, Non-Fiction Magazine Article; Jacob Waring; "A lot to juggle"

Finalist, Feature Photography; Meghan Olson; "Funky hair"

Newspaper - Southern News

Finalist, Sports Writing; Kevin Crompton; "Wallace joins elite company in record books"

Finalist, Breaking News Reporting; Joshua LaBella and August Pelliccio; "Racial slur in class causes outrage"


Newspaper - Southern News

Finalist, General Column Writing; Xavier Lassiter


College Contest


First Place; Feature Story; Rock it at the Roller Derby; Sofia Rositani

First Place; Feature Photo; From campus to the boxing ring; Tyrese Abdul-Shakoor

First Place; General Column; Crybaby is gone, Melanie Martinez is reborn; Sarah Shelton

First Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Exploring all seven continents; Fatima Ahmad

First Place; Sports Feature Story; Capturing NFL players on video; Jaylen Carr

First Place; Video Storytelling; Exploring all seven continents; Robert Hahn

Second Place; General Reporting; Reaching new heights; Gabi Tunucci

Second Place; Sports Photo; Scoring points on campus; Luke Molwitz

Second Place; Video Storytelling; From campus to the boxing ring; Tyrese Abdul-Shakoor, Rafaela Martinez

Second Place; Breaking News; President Joe is leaving the university; Sofia Rositani, Sarah Shelton, Jaylen Carr

Second Place; Feature Photo; Move-in day brings new students to campus; Sarah Shelton

Second Place; General Column; You should love yourself this Valentine’s Day; Sarah Shelton

Second Place; Sports News Story; Jones sets a program record for most assists; Jaylen Carr

Third Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; From campus to the boxing ring; Malena Araujo

Third Place; Video Storytelling; Javelin champs; Domenick Sollima

Third Place; Feature Story; Real Talk: Voices for change; Gabi Tunucci


First Place; Feature; Brooke Kuryan; "Connecticut's geology rocks!" Crescent magazine

First Place; Page 1 Layout; Everett Rende; "Connecticut's geology rocks!" Crescent magazine

Second Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Everett Rende; "Uncovering the art of drag;" Crescent magazine

Third Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Everett Rende; "Rushing into Greek Life;" Crescent magazine



First Place; COVID-19 Reporting; Jason Edwards; "Frontline Owls;" Crescent magazine

Second Place; Editorial/Op-Ed; Jessica Guerrucci; "Content creators;" Crescent magazine

Second Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Muhaymina Plair; "A stitch in time;" Crescent magazine

Third Place; COVID-19 Reporting; Liz Getts; "Future teachers take on COVID-19;" Crescent magazine

Third Place; Feature; Sarah Shelton; "The show must go on: Breaking the stigma against theater majors;" Crescent magazine

Third Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Muhaymina Plair; "Music and the mind: How music can positively affect mental health;" Crescent magazine


First Place; Feature; Amanda Cavoto; "Kicking the vaping habit;" Crescent magazine

First Place;  Feature photo; Jason Edwards; "Irish dancer;" Crescent magazine

First Place; Non-Page 1 Layout; Muhaymina Plair; "Southern swag;" Crescent magazine

Third Place; Non-Page 1 Layout;  Samuel Fix; "Hearts of the Sound;" Crescent magazine

Second Place; Sports Feature Story; Sam Tapper; "Jones brings new energy;" Southern News

First Place; Sports News Story; Hunter Lyle; "Ex Patriot player returns;" Southern News


Sports News; Matt Gad; "Former all-American Walsh returns to compete"; Southern News

Professional Contest


First Place; Regional A Health Reporting; Kaitlyn Regan, Ryan Conchado, Kevin Crompton, Jailene Cuevas, Melanie Espinal, Jonathan Gonzalez, Andrew Hans, Megan Hill, Patrick Quinn O'Neill, August Pelliccio, Michael Riccio, Alyssa Rice; "Costs and access still barriers to health care, survey finds"

Second place, Hyperlocal/Sports Feature; Sandra Gomez-Aceves and Allaysia Varnado; "Wrestlers aim high as new season approaches"
Second place, Hyperlocal/Video Storytelling; Edgar Ayala and Jared Klim; "Hillhouse team overcame practice field challenge"
Third place; Hyperlocal/Video Storytelling; Katherine G. Krajcik and Amy Kulikowski; "Hopkins swimmer looks toward Olympic Trial"


Second place, General Reporting Series, Online; Carl Jordan Castro, Cristina D'Almeida, Emili Lanno, Xavier Lassiter, Krystina Morgan, Alexander Roberts, Hannah Spreckley, Ratasha Smith, Matt Stumpo; "CT Bus Diaries"

2023: Sarah Shelton

2022: Abigail Epstein, Benjamin Paquette

2021: Jessica Guerrucci

2020: Kaitlyn Regan, Alexandra Scicchitano

2019: Victoria Bresnahan, August Pelliccio

2018: Chloe Gorman
2017: Sandra Gomez-Aceves, Carl Jordan Castro, Sherly Montes
2016: Monica Zielinski 
2015: Derek Torrellas, Trevon Freeman, Juliemar Ortiz
2014: Nicole Y. Dellolio
2013: Savannah Mul
2012: Ryan Morgan, Bethany Tuller
2011: Allison Townsend
2010: Benjamin Johnson, Erin Jones
2009: Ronald J. Ragozzino
2008: Brittany Galla
2007: Amie L. Martin
2006: Joanne M. Mozdzer
2005: Jennifer L. Taber, Gretchen Zonas
2004: Christine H. Buchbinder
2003: Tyson R. Kaczmarek, Jessica M. Lyon
2002: Heather M. Cavaliere
2001: Erica Gordon
2000: Kristen Murphy
1999: Ethan D. Mitkowski
1998: Elizabeth Clampet, Kathleen Casagrande
1997: Ian Powers

2023: Sofia Rositani

2022: Abigail Epstein

2021: Jessica Guerrucci, Samuel Tapper

2020: Tamanda Griffiths, Jessica Guerrucci

2019: Kevin Crompton, Joshua LaBella

2018: Jeniece Roman, Lynandro Simmons
2017: Josh Falcone, Dylan Haviland
2016: Josh Falcone
2015: Mackenzie Hurlbert, Hannah Spreckley
2014: Ivylee E. Rosario
2013: Elizabeth Dishian
2012: Jeffrey Nowak
2011: Stephanie Paulino
2010: Allison Townsend
2009: Benjamin W. Johnson
2008: Jennifer Lynn Duval
2007: Mark L. Prokop
2006: Christopher E. Wilson
2005: Jennifer L. Taber
2004: Jennifer Manes, Robin Walluck
2003: Robin Walluck
2002: Anthony L. Apuzzo
2001: Michael Spagnola
2000: Jessica Plourde
1999: James J. Opton
1998: Heather Weant
1997: Ethan Mitkowski
1996: Amy Garceau, Joseph Christinat
1995: Edward J. Crowder, Corey E. Fyke
1994: Christine Winderlin
1993: Christopher Cosenza, Adrienne Nagy
1992: Heather C. Waldron
1991: Steven W. Mark
1990: Susana Martins, Paul Boudreau
1989: Patricia Fusco
1988: Christine Powell
1987: Lynne Marie Mikulak
1986: Jan Cronan, Denise Madera
1985: Elizabeth Metz, Jeffrey Smith
1984: Elizabeth Metz, Alan Olenick
1983: Dominic Amore
1982: Diane Ploch, Susan Braden
1981: Eileen Keyes
1980: Nancy A. Schultz
1979: Robert Molnar

2023: Valeria Araujo

2022: Elizabeth Mercado

2021: Jason Edwards, Kenneth Baah

2021: Jessica Guerrucci, Liz Getts

2020: Amanda Cavoto, Samuel Fix, Jacob Waring

The Data Institute is a two-week intensive workshop for journalists and journalism students focused on data reporting and coding. Only 12 journalists are selected each year.

2017: Sandra Gomez-Aceves

Will Write for Food is a competitive program where journalism students from across the country gather together at a homeless shelter in Hollywood, Florida to help produce one edition of The Homeless Voice, a newspaper sold as a fundraiser for the shelter. 

2014: Carl Jordan Castro, writer


2018: Journalism Department; Certificate of Recognition; Remembering World War 1 collaboration with Connecticut State Library


First Place; Arts & Entertainment, Hyperlocal; Curious about Ed Vebell, patrons pack Historical Society;; James Lomuscio

First Place; Breaking News, Hyperlocal; At 9/11 memorial, rain mixes with tears;; James Lomuscio

First Place; General Column, Hyperlocal; Bill Seiden, 91: A reporter’s retrospective;; James Lomuscio

First Place; Health, Hyperlocal; Schools grapple with handling sexual assault complaints;; James Lomuscio

First Place; News Photo, Regional A; Lucky shots; Hartford Courant; Mark Mirko

First Place; Photo Essay, Regional A; Convention season; Hartford Courant; Mark Mirko

First Place; Video Storytelling, Regional B; Christmas season brings Harry Potter, Phantom of the Opera and fiery hot cocoa to Cava; Record-Journal; Ashley Kus

First Place; Business, Hyperlocal; Mitchells: Guided 60 years by a mom & pop philosophy;; James Lomuscio

Second Place; Breaking News, Hyperlocal; Staples student in custody after violence threat;; James Lomuscio

Second Place; Video Storytelling, Regional B; Organist keeps music alive at Meriden church; Record-Journal; Ashley Kus

Third Place; Business, Hyperlocal; Commuter Coffee says goodbye at Railroad Place;; James Lomuscio

Third Place; Continuing Coverage, Hyperlocal; At P&Z, strong opposition to medical marijuana facilities;; James Lomuscio

Third Place; Feature Story, Hyperlocal; Grand marshal Larry Aasen on war and remembrance;; James Lomuscio


Frank Harris; Second Place; General Column, Regional A; "Mr. Carson, slaves were not immigrants"

Jodie Mozdzer Gil; Third Place; Data Reporting, Regional A; "Less access to health services, programs in rural areas take toll"

Dom Amore; First Place; Sports News, Regional A; " Crumbling foundations?"

James Lomuscio; First Place; Arts & Entertainment, Hyperlocal; "For artist, mural’s future uncertain with library expansion"

James Lomuscio; First Place; Business, Hyperlocal; "Oystering on Mill Pond: Reclaiming a family legacy"

James Lomuscio; First Place; Education; Hyperlocal; "Tears for future of Staples child development program"

James Lomuscio; First Place; Sports feature, Hyperlocal; "On the job with: Todd Salamone, golf course superintendent"

James Lomuscio; Second Place; Breaking news, Hyperlocal; "Former neighbor recalls car into water victim"

James Lomuscio; Second Place; Leisure, Hyperlocal; "With ‘perfect chowder weather,’ Chowdafest draws record crowds"

James Lomuscio; Third Place; Continuing coverage, Hyperlocal; "Church ‘Black Lives Matter’ banner vandalized, bringing condemnation"

James Lomuscio; Third Place; Investigative, Hyperlocal; "Chief Koskinas: Talk needed on pistol permits increase and mental health issues"

James Lomuscio; Third Place; Leisure, Hyperlocal; "Dog festival a real tail wagger"

James Lomuscio; Third Place; Local reporting, Hyperlocal; "Chief Koskinas: Talk needed on pistol permits increase and mental health issues"


Jodie Mozdzer Gil; First Place; Video Storytelling, Regional A; "Mindfulness moves into the mainstream"
Dom Amore; Second Place; Sports News, Regional A; "Jalen Adams miracle shot keeps Huskies alive"


Jodie Mozdzer Gil; Second Place; Government, Hyperlocal; "Derby school board violates nepotism policy"
Dom Amore; First Place; Sports Feature, Regional A; "Long memory for baseball"
Dom Amore; Second Place; Sports Feature, Regional A; "Amida Brimah's long journey from Ghana to Uconn"
Dom Amore; Second Place; Sports Column, Regional A; "For Mets Terry Collins, a dream come true"
Dom Amore; Second Place; Sports News, Regional A; "For Uconn, a hard loss to swallow"
Dom Amore; Third Place; Sports News, Regional A; "Under World Series glare, things turn sour for Mets in game 4"


Cindy Simoneau; Teacher of the Year Award; Small Programs Interest Group
Jodie Mozdzer Gil; First Place; Participatory Journalism Interest Group Poster Competition