2018 is Our Year

2018 is Our Year

We love hearing stories about what our students and alumni are up to. We’re never surprised when we learn of their successes, and 2018 is shaping to be a busy year for students and alumni from the Department of Mass Media.

TV & Film

In April of this year, two senior mass communication majors, Branson Cusack and Spencer McGruder, joined the ranks of notable photojournalists when their work was featured in an episode of ABC’s 20/20, hosted by Diane Sawyer.

Over three months, Cusack and McGruder were tasked with shooting b-roll for five separate assignments, including capturing footage showcasing Dexter and Sikeston, Missouri areas and the Glen Carbon, Illinois area. One of the assignments featured a subject at home and on the job.

“While there were definitely additional steps and planning we had to do to get the exact footage the 20/20 team was looking for, their planning process and actions for achieving those set goals were very similar to what we do here for productions at Southeast,” McGruder said.


Student staff members of the Arrow have had a big year too. The Arrow has received multiple national honors: 3 Best Show Awards, 3 CMA Pinnacle Awards, and Finalists at ACP Newspaper Pacemaker Awards. In addition to the national honor awards,  the student newspaper of Southeast Missouri State University brought home 12 awards, including four first-place, three second-place, three third-place finishes and one honorable mention from the Missouri College Media Association (MCMA) Conference April 7-8.

Kara Hartnett, 2017-2018 editor of the Arrow, was named Journalist of the Year and attributes her success to her staff, Southeast’s multimedia journalism program, and faculty.

“I think my award truly is a testament to the people I had the privilege of working with at the Arrow, and all the hard work they put in to make our vision work,” Hartnett said. “Dr. Buck is the sole proprietor to who I am as a journalist. If anything is a testament to the incredible journalism program we have at Southeast, it’s the progress I have made in my three years of being in it.”


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