The Rocket captures 22 Society for Collegiate Journalists awards


Slippery Rock University Rocket

May 9, 2017

SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. - The Society for Collegiate Journalists has recognized The Rocket, the independent, student-run newspaper serving Slippery Rock University, with 22 awards through its 2017 Annual National Contest.

The SCJ, the nation's oldest organization designed solely to serve college media leaders, honors work submitted by its 100 active chapters and 1,200 members from across the nation that was published during the previous calendar year.

Awards were presented to The Rocket in the following categories:

  • Newspaper Overall Excellence (weekly or less): Honorable mention;
  • Companion Newspaper Website Overall Excellence: Second place,;
  • News Photo: Honorable mention, "SRU calls second true cancellation in three years" by Kendall Scott, a senior recreational therapy major from Bent Mountain, Virginia;
  • Sports Photo: Second place, "Rock football fights through adversity to finish season 7-4" by Rebecca Dietrich, a senior communication major from Pittsburgh;
  • Editorial Cartoon: Honorable mention, "SRU should raffle off unused graduation tickets" by Scott, and "Nontraditional students are welcome at SRU" by Scott;
  • Graphic Illustration: Second place, "A brief overview of the first two days of the strike at Slippery Rock University" by Dietrich and Scott; third place, "Sex survey reveal students' opinions on sex" by Karleigh Santry, a 2016 graduate with a bachelor's degree in communication from Lake City;
  • Multi-Media Sports News Story: Third place, "Music Therapy club hosts concert" by Emily Brown, a sophomore exercise science major from Acme;
  • Individual Multi-Media Sports Story: Honorable mention, "What it's like to try out for college basketball" by Cody Nespor, a senior communication major from Mercer;
  • Multi-Media Series: First place, "Slippery Rock Faculty go on strike" by Dietrich and Scott;
  • Photo Slideshow: Second place, "Second day of the strike" by Dietrich;
  • Breaking or Hard News Stories: First place, "APSCUF members hold rally to discuss strike and deliver petition to President's office" by Daniel DiFabio, a junior communication major from Washington;
  • Front Page Design: First place, "11-4-16" by Scott; second place, "2-12-16" by Santry;
  • Editorial Page Design: First place, "2-12-16" by Janelle Wilson, a 2016 graduate with a bachelor's degree in communication from Enon Valley;
  • Sports Page Design: First place, "Women's Basketball Line-Up" by Nespor;
  • Feature Page Design: Second place, "Fantastic Beasts" by Dietrich; third place, "Ready, Set, Color" by Dietrich; and honorable mention, "Beyond the Transition" by Amber Cannon, a 2016 graduate with a bachelor's degree in communication from Sharon;
  • Photo Essay: Third place, "Hey! What's Up" by Dietrich; and
  • Sports Feature: Honorable mention, "SRU Freshmen working to keep her Olympic dream alive," by Jordyn Bennett, a senior communication major from Thornton.

The SCJ is the third organization to recognize The Rocket with national awards in the past month, joining The American Scholastic Press Association and the Society of Professional Journalists.

MEDIA CONTACT: Justin Zackal | 724.738.4854 |