JEA, SPJ announce essay contest scholarship winners

JEA, SPJ announce essay contest scholarship winners

The Journalism Education Association and the Society of Professional Journalists announce three scholarship winners in the 2019 SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest.

Over 220 students participated in the nationwide contest, which was judged by 30 journalism educators. Established in 1998, the contest is a project of both JEA and SPJ. The topic for the 2019 contest (“What is the role and importance of the Fourth Estate in American society?”) was selected by members of the Scholastic Press Rights Committee of JEA and a representative of SPJ.

“This year’s SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest featured a pertinent question about the role of journalism in American society. Students answered the call and showed they had a full understanding of the critical need for journalism through their written responses,” said Kelly Glasscock, certified journalism educator and JEA executive director. “The top essays not only modeled advanced writing skills, but also provided examples to apply historical context. This combination resulted in persuasive arguments which guides readers to assimilate the significance of journalism and its impact on civic efficacy.”

2019 SPJ/JEA High School Essay Contest award winners:

First Place, $1,000 Scholarship Winner:
Dennis Zhang, Peddie School — Hillsborough, New Jersey

Second Place, $500 Scholarship Winner:
Quinna Halim, Northville High School – Novi, Michigan

Third Place, $300 Scholarship Winner:
Mattias Hoz, Berkeley High School – Berkeley, California

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Support excellent journalism and fight for your right to know. Become a member,give to the Legal Defense Fund, or give to the Sigma Delta Chi Foundation.

Founded in 1924, the Journalism Education Association supports free and responsible scholastic journalism by providing resources and educational opportunities, by promoting professionalism, by encouraging and rewarding student excellence and teacher achievement, and by fostering an atmosphere which encompasses diversity yet builds unity. It is headquartered at Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas. For further information about JEA, please visit

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