2014 – 2015 Writing Winners

From 562 writing entries received in the 2014-2015 writing competitions, eight finalists’ competition articles qualified them for the Hearst National Writing Championship in San Francisco, where they competed for additional scholarship awards. This special event consisted of an on-the-spot assignment and a press interview. The finalists’ articles were judged for accuracy, writing quality, enterprise and innovation.

On Monday, June 1st, shortly after arriving in SF, the finalists met with the judges for orientation and assignments . This year, the on-the-spot assignment was to tell an untold story about the effects of the California drought. The finalists’ press interview subject was former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown. The final deadline was Wednesday at 6 p.m. by which point a news story from the interview, a personality/profile of Mayor Brown and the spot news piece were due. After reviewing the articles Thursday morning, the judges made their decisions and the winners were announced at the awards ceremony that evening.

The first through third place winners were awarded scholarships of $5,000, $4,000, and $3, 000 respectively and are featured below. The five finalists who earned $1,500 scholarship awards were: Emilie Eaton, Arizona State University, Evan Hoopfer, Indiana University, Megan Jula, Indiana University, Michael Majchrowicz, Indiana University, Faiz Siddiqui, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The $1,000 Article of the Year Award went to Hannah Fleace for her story “Miner and Mother” published in the Dubois Country Herald. The $1,000 Best Reporting Technique Award went to Samantha Schmidt for her story “Caught in the Gray Zone” published in the Indiana Daily Student.


Samantha Schmidt
First Place
Indiana University
$5,000 award


Emilie Eaton
Arizona State University
$1,500 scholarship

Additional Awards

Hannah Fleace
Article of the Year
Indiana University
$1,000 Award