Hard work and passion

My trip to Columbus this past weekend brought much excitement and honor. As I mentioned in my last post, I took a road trip with my mom down to Columbus for the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters awards that took place at the Hilton in Easton.

Mark Bergmann, WRMU’s station manager, met us there and we were able to sit at a table together with people from a radio station in Dover. What’s cool about that radio station is that one of the reporters is a Mount Union alumnus. Her name is Jessica Eggan and I met her last year at these same awards.

Here’s some background about this event: newscasters, writers, photographers and producers from TV news shows and radio stations are given awards for their work during the previous year. Once the professionals submit their work in December, a panel of professionals in another state judges the works. (I think they do it this way so there is no bias). Since the title of the event has ”Ohio” in it, you can assume that the awards are for professionals in the State of Ohio but it also includes West Virginia as well.

Last year at this ceremony, I won my first Associated Press award for a three-part series I produced on global education at Mount Union. I won second place in a category called “Best Documentary or Series.”

Going into the awards this year, I knew it was possible but kind of unlikely that I would win first place in any category. I am afterall, the only college student that was present for the second year in a row. All of these people in attendance are professionals in their field; some have been doing this for decades. It is simply an honor even to win second place.

However, this year I didn’t win second place. As the announcer arrived at my category, he announced the second place winner first … and it wasn’t me. Mark and my mom just looked at me with open mouths because they knew that must’ve meant that I won first place. A couple seconds later, we heard, “… and for first place in best feature reporting, Shannon Brys from WRMU in Alliance for ’Take Back the Night.’” Woah.

Yes, you can say that I may have been the only person at these awards that had tears in my eyes after I received my award. I could not believe that I just beat out professionals from around the state. This is also exciting for me because I set another record for Mount Union.

I am the first student to ever win two professional radio awards, and now I am the first student at Mount that has ever placed first. :]

Hard work really does pay off and it’s awesome when your hard work is also something that you love doing. I’m pretty sure I’m not going to go into the radio field after I graduate from the University but I have such a passion for it and I will continue to be involved in it until I leave Alliance in December. I’m also the program sirector this upcoming semester (which is the same thing as being president of a club) and I’m really excited to teach new students what I already know. :]

Have a great week everyone!

-Shannon

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