The following are the requirements for entering the writing, photojournalism, audio, television and/or multimedia competitions:
- Only member colleges and universities of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass
Communications (ASJMC) with accredited undergraduate journalism-mass communication programs, and located in the United States or its possessions, are eligible to participate. See a list of accredited schools here.
- No more than two entrants from each university may enter each competition except in the Multimedia IV – Team Competition and the new Team Investigative Reporting competition.
- Each participating school selects the two entrants per competition who are eligible to enter.
- Students who participate in the writing, audio, television and/or multimedia competitions must be duly
enrolled, undergraduate majors in the accredited unit at the time the entry is published, aired or posted. An exception is made for photo entrants who may be from outside of the accredited unit.
- Spring, summer or fall 2023 graduates may enter the contests in the 2023-2024 program year. The spring or summer 2023 graduates would NOT be eligible to complete in the 2024 National Championship. The entries must have been published/aired/posted before students were graduated.
- Pre-majors are eligible to enter as long as the entrant confirms the intention to declare a major in the
accredited unit and the school verifies this fact. (This rule does not apply to students entering the photo competitions–they do not need to be journalism majors to enter). Entrants have to be enrolled at least half-time and may not enter the competition in more than three contest years.
- Student entrants must be actively involved in campus media and must have published articles, photographs, produced newscasts, or multimedia pieces that can be submitted in the monthly competitions.
- The competitions are not open to high school students, graduate students, or undergraduate journalism
majors who have had one year or more of full-time professional experience-or its equivalent-when the entry is published, produced or posted. (This includes multiple internships if the time totals twelve months or more).
- Study abroad: Students who are majors in the accredited unit but are enrolled in an authorized international study-abroad program and receiving credit from their home universities are also eligible.
- Internships: Because an internship may take place at any time during the calendar year, a student may be declared full-time during an internship in any summer, semester or quarter. An internship means a position in any mass medium or in a professional capacity in journalism communications.
- A writing entrant may not enter another writing competition after receiving a first place scholarship or two second-through-fifth-place scholarships.
- A photo entrant may not enter another photo competition after receiving first-through-fifth place in any of the two photo competitions.
- An audio or television entrant may not enter another broadcast competition after receiving first-through-fifth place in any of the broadcast competitions.
- A multimedia entrant may not enter another multimedia competition after receiving first place in any of the multimedia competitions.
- An entrant who has won first place in the writing, photojournalism, audio, television or multimedia
Championships is not eligible to compete in future competitions in the same category.
- All entries and materials submitted will become the property of William Randolph Hearst Foundation and cannot be returned. The entrant retains copyright of the entry. However, the Foundation and any of its
licensees is granted the non-exclusive, perpetual, worldwide rights to publish, use, distribute and display the entry, in whole or in part, and to use the entrant’s name and likeness, in all print and non-print media and formats and by all means and technologies now known or hereafter developed, including use for
Scholarship awards will be sent as ACH payments to the accredited college or university made out to the winning student’s benefit. Such college or university will be directed to expend the funds to cover the student’s
educational costs (tuition, matriculation and other fees, and room and board provided by or
approved by the college or university). When scholarship funds are awarded after the student has graduated, the college or university may credit funds retroactively.