The first annual John C. Knox Writing Contest was held Sat., Nov. 1 at 9:30 a.m. on the campus of Waynesburg University under the director of Brandon Szuminsky, instructor of Communication at Waynesburg University. The contest was free and open to high school students in grades 10 to 12 within the tri-state area interested in writing or journalism. The Observer Publishing Company sponsored this event. Cash prizes were awarded to the winners.
Following registration, students were welcomed and given instructions, followed by an hour-long news conference with Lanny Frattare, former Pittsburgh Pirates announcer and assistant professor of communication at Waynesburg University. The students then had a two-hour session to write a feature article based on that information.
The students’ articles were judged by local newspaper journalists and editors from the Observer-Reporter as well as members of Waynesburg University's Department of Communication and the University's student chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.
The winners are as follows:
•First-place winner: Joseph Wilkinson of Pittsburgh, senior at Mt. Lebanon High School
•Second-place winner: Alex McCann of Freedom, senior at Eden Christian Academy
•Third-place winner: Katie Siple of Spring Grove, senior at York Catholic High School
The winners showed praiseworthy examples of a journalistic feature article. The first-place winner received $500 and his article will be published in the award-winning Waynesburg University student newspaper, the Yellow Jacket. Second-place received $300 and third-place, $200. All participants were awarded a t-shirt.
“It was a very tough task to choose the winners,” said Szuminsky. “The quality of work these students produced is very impressive. It was encouraging to see so many young people committed to journalism and quality writing. We hope all the participants continue this commitment throughout their high school career and into college and beyond.”
Next year’s John C. Knox Writing Contest will be held in Fall 2015.
For more information, contact Brandon Szuminsky at 724-852-3427 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.