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MSPR news team earns Kentucky Broadcast Association Awards

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Morehead State Public Radio (WMKY, 90.3FM) staff and students received numerous awards in the 2021 Kentucky Broadcasters Association (KBA) Impact Broadcast Awards.  

The radio station, located in Breckinridge Hall, earned a total of 13 awards in the professional and college divisions, including three first-place finishes. 

Radio College Division: 

1st Place – Best Newscast, Kennealy Roberts and Sarah Meade ("Mountain Edition News") 

1st Place – Best Website, Morehead State University ("wmky.org") 

2nd Place – Best Radio Reporter, Sarah Meade 

3rd Place – Best Radio Reporter, Kennealy Roberts 

3rd Place – Best Feature Story, Kennealy Roberts ("The Ritual of Food in Appalachia") 

3rd Place – Best Sports Coverage, Johnathan Burton ("Rush Off-Road") 

3rd Place – Best News Story, Michael Green ("Kentucky Court System Pandemic Changes") 

Burton is a junior convergent media major from Hillsboro; Meade is a senior convergent media major from Paintsville; and Roberts is a junior convergent media major from Morehead. Green, a native of Grayson, earned his bachelor’s degree in convergent media in May 2020. 

Radio Professional Division: 

1st Place – Best Long Newscast, Leeann Akers ("Mountain Edition News") 

2nd Place – Overall Excellence, WMKY 

2nd Place – Best Short Newscast, Tanner Boyd ("WMKY News") 

2nd Place – Best Sports Reporting, Leeann Akers and Tanner Boyd ("WMKY Sports") 

2nd Place – Best Investigative Reporting, Tanner Boyd ("Church Sex Scandal") 

3rd Place – Best Digital Coverage, Leeann Akers, Tanner Boyd and Kennealy Roberts 

"MSPR is dedicated to providing quality educational opportunities to our many student work-studies, volunteers and interns," said Paul Hitchcock, general manager of MSPR. "An important part of our mission is preserving and promoting this region's cultural heritage with programming that is educational, informative and entertaining. Providing local news is a major part of preserving our heritage. I'm extremely proud of our news staff, including a great team of student work-studies. They work long hours to provide in-depth, fair and accurate news to our listeners. Their dedication and commitment to MSPR's listeners is outstanding."  

Meade said she's acquired a range of skills working at the radio station that is preparing her for her future career. 

"Some of the skills that I've learned in those roles has been producing and editing daily news and sports reports, editing audio packages with digital editing software, curating content, and preventing inappropriate airings to maintain station compliance with federal regulations, setting up and running equipment in diverse conditions at on-site interviews and completing accurate, engaging and fact-checked stories," Meade said. "The best part about working at the radio station is that no day is the same. Every day you're working on new stories and learning new information." 

Roberts said she appreciates the mentorship she receives from the radio station's professional staff.  

"I love everyone I work with, and all of my superiors at the station are so helpful and kind. Working at MSPR gives a sense of preparedness that I wouldn't have gotten otherwise," she said. "My favorite part of working at MSPR is being able to gain experience that I'll need going forward in a very safe and welcoming environment. Since having all the hands-on experience we get as work studies at MSPR, I won't be going into the workforce blind. I'll be very well prepared for the world of professional journalism since I'll have already been technically working as a journalist my entire college career." 

The Board of Regents governs Morehead State Public Radio (MSPR) at Morehead State University (MSU) in Morehead, Kentucky. MSPR is operated at 50,000 watts (50,000 kW) by its flagship station, WMKY, at 90.3FM. WMKY can also operate for unlimited operation at 5,000 watts (5kW) using an auxiliary transmitter and non-directional antenna. Since 1965, WMKY has served the communities in more than twenty counties throughout eastern Kentucky, southern Ohio and western West Virginia. 

MSPR's mission is to provide regional programming that is educational, informative and entertaining. Through the work provided by a staff consisting of four full-time directors, several part-time personnel, Morehead State University student work-studies and community volunteers, MSPR offers regional news, public affairs and documentary programming, and a variety of music programs consisting of classical, jazz and Americana.

To learn more about MSPR, visit http://www.wmky.org or email Hitchcock at p.hitchc@moreheadstate.edu or call 606-783-2001.

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