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Radio-TV-film students at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh continue to win accolades for their work.

UW Oshkosh was well-represented in three recent competitions.

The National Broadcasting Society held its annual awards presentation on March 24 as part of their convention in Jersey City. UW Oshkosh garnered seven awards in this national competition.

  • A grand prize was awarded in the audio sports package category for a radio piece by WRST sports director Brandon Kinnard. The piece Titan Football Outlook: UW Whitewater Warhawks previewed the homecoming game between UW Oshkosh and UW-Whitewater.
  • Kinnard was also a co-recipient of a grand prize in the category of audio sports play-by-play programming. He and WRST Program Director Spencer Wagen were honored for their broadcast of a men’s basketball game between UWO Oshkosh and St. Norbert College.
  • An honorable mention award was given in the category for audio news segment. WRST production director Eric Balkman won for his reporting on Wisconsin’s new voter ID rules.
  • WRST also won an honorable mention award for station imaging. This submission included a collection of station promos and audio IDs. In addition to Kinnard, Wagen and Balkman, items in this entry also came from WRST staffers Tyler Thrune (station manager), Kyle Kohl (music director), Tim Theide (promotions director) and Rachel Kohn (traffic director).
  • UW Oshkosh also was honored in the scriptwriting categories, sweeping the category for spec scripts. A grand prize in this category went Samantha Wallschlager for a script she wrote for The Walking Dead called Impedimenta. Wallschlager is promotions coordinator for both the UW Oshkosh Film Society and International Film Series. The honorable mention award in this category went to Callie Mills for a script she penned for the program Arrested Development. Both scripts were produced for the Prime-Time Television Writing course.
  • UW Oshkosh student Kevin Heyer took the honorable mention award in the category for comedy program script with his original script Contrite, which was produced for the Screenwriting course in RTF. Heyer is also president of the UW Oshkosh Film Society.

The Society of Professional Journalists presented its regional “Mark of Excellence” awards for collegiate journalism at the Midwest Journalism Conference in Bloomington, Minnesota on March 30. This was the first time WRST entered this four-state competition, and WRST sports director Brandon Kinnard took the First Place in Radio Sports Reporting for his Titan Football Outlook: UW Whitewater Warhawks preview piece mentioned earlier. The segment will now be entered in the organization’s national competition in this category to face first-place entries from other regions, with winners to be announced in May.

The six-state Northwest Broadcast News Association presented its journalism awards during the group’s annual convention in Bloomington, Minnesota on March 31. The awards are named for and honor Eric Sevareid, the longtime CBS News reporter and commentator. Eight UW Oshkosh entries were honored, three of which were first place awards:

  • In the student category for Documentary/Specials, WRST News Director Dana Sekeres won a first place award for her in-depth radio feature segment on the controversy surrounding TV weight loss programs. The story included comments from an interview she conducted with Dr. Caryn Murphy of the RTF faculty.
  • In the student category for best broadcast writing, Eric Balkman was honored with a first place award for a piece he did called Local Man vs. Food, an interview with a UW Oshkosh student who took on an eating challenge on the Travel Channel’s Man vs. Food program.
  • Balkman also took first place in the student category for best newscast for his WRST newscast from the afternoon of November 18, 2011.
  • Balkman also took home one of the awards of merit. His piece Black and Yellows profiled a group of UW Oshkosh sports fans and was honored in the student category for best audio. Balkman produced this segment for the Advanced Radio Production class in RTF.
  • In the student category for best sports play-by-play, WRST station manager Tyler Thrune and WRST program director Spencer Wagen won an award of merit for their call of a men’s basketball game between UW Oshkosh and UW-Stevens Point.
  • In the student category for sports reporting, WRST sports director Brandon Kinnard won an award of merit for his Titan Football Outlook: UW Whitewater Warhawks preview piece mentioned earlier.
  • WRST won two awards of merit in the student category for sportscast/program: Thrune and Wagen won for a live interview they conducted over WRST with UW Badgers football broadcaster Matt Lepay in advance of the Wisconsin-Nebraska game. Thrune, Wagen, Kinnard and WRST co-news director/assistant promotions director Patrick Wucherer won for their WIAC Preview Show over WRST.

UWO RTF students have won 36 major competitive awards thus far this academic year.

Randall Davidson submitted this announcement. Faculty, staff and students are encouraged to contribute calendar items, campus announcements and other good news to UW Oshkosh Today.

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