2011 College Columnists Scholarships Presented

Jocelyn Rousey of Boston College was presented with the 2011 NSNC Education Foundation Scholarship award following lunch at an infamous Detroit landmark called American Coney Island. In accepting the award, Jocelyn commented that the thing that had impressed her most about attending the columnists’ conference was the passion for writing that columnists show.  One of Jocelyn’s winning columns can be seen on this website. She is a graduating senior and hope to make journalism her career.

Dr. Russell Frank, Chair of the College Columnists Scholarship Contest presented the award. The NSNCEF awards annual scholarships to three outstanding student newspaper columnists who write for U.S. college or university undergraduate newspapers. First prize is $1,000 and a trip to the annual NSNC Conference as a guest of the Society.

Second Place went to Gavin Mathis, Washington State University and Third Place winner was Jillian Werthei of  UC  Berkeley.  Second prize is $500 and Third prize is $250. There were were about 80 entries.

This year’s winners were selected by Don Fry, writing coach and emeritus faculty member of  The Poynter Institute, a nonprofit institute dedicated to elevating the standards of journalism through training and research. Fry was also be a presenter at the 2011 NSNC Conference. Semi-final judges were Sheila Moss, Suzette Standring, Dave Astor and Ben Pollock.


First PlaceJocelyn Rousey, Boston College, Senior, majoring in English and Economics; minoring in International Studies
Final Judge, Don Fry said, “Ms. Rousey writes about Jon Stewart, the Constitution, and WikiLeaks in columns based on solid information and thinking. Her prose is as clear as her opinions.”

Sheila Moss, preliminary judge, commented:  “Jocelyn has insightful commentary on the workings of politics, as well as an effectively expressed comprehension of the purpose of journalism. Her articles are well thought out and presented in a clear and readable format that any reader can appreciate. It is a pleasure to read such outstanding work — an artful submission that deserves to be recognized.”

Second PlaceGavin Mathis, Washington State University, Senior, majoring in journalism and political science
Don Fry said, “Mr. Mathis writes about WikiLeaks, the Ground Zero Mosque, and Gaza in clear and direct prose, tempered by empathy for the stakeholders.”

Suzette Standring, preliminary judge, commented:  “Well earned opinions wrapped in great writing.”

Third PlaceJillian Wertheim, UC  Berkeley, Sophomore, planning to majoring in rhetoric and history of art
Don Fry commented, “Ms. Wertheim writes about gym intimidation, sex as baseball, and local travel in a witty, self-deprecating voice, from wicked viewpoints.”

Dave Astor noted: “The columnist possessing the best humorous touch of all the ones I read, with the humor even extending to her varying e-mail-address blurbs at the end of each piece. Ms. Wertheim’s takes fun, insightful looks at things like working out at the gym, traveling close to home, and the similarities between sex and baseball terminology.”

Dr. Russell Frank, Associate Professor of Communications, Pennsylvania State University and NSNC Education Chair extended appreciation to the judges and to all the students who entered work in the contest.

The scholarship contest is an annual endeavor of  the NSNC Education Foundation, a tax-exempt non-profit foundation devoted to the education and training of new and old columnists. Tax-deductible contributions to the NSNCEF are accepted.


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