It was a night of honors, laughs and respect for the media, communications and journalism (MCJ) department as it celebrated the culmination of a year’s achievements on May 3 during the MCJ Showcase of Excellence.
The showcase, hosted by the MCJ Showcase team from the MCJ 159 class, honored works from each option within the department: multimedia, broadcast, print, advertising and public relations.
“Our goal was to celebrate our department, our students, our faculty and the work they all do to maintain the excellent level of education and the hands-on experience that provides students with the tools they need to be successful after college,” Kellie Hustedde said.
Students dressed up for the occasion as they watched their peers be awarded with certificates and miniature trophies.
Hustedde, a public relations major, set to graduate from Fresno State in two weeks, was voted Best of Show by her peers and described the award as ‘an incredible and humbling feel.’
“In my experience in the MCJ department, I’ve found that everyone is an incredibly hard worker and incredibly talented at what they do. I was honored to be in a category with the best of the best in our department, and winning was the cherry on top of a long, tough senior year,” Hustedde said.
Along with Hustedde, broadcast student and senior Tristan Lewis received first place TV News Reporting and first place TV Sports Reporting awards.
“I’m excited. I really didn’t think my TV news [entry] was going to be awarded because there were so many other great contenders with me, but I’m super happy it did because I worked really hard on that one,” Lewis said.
Lewis was part of the emcee crew for the event, and while he was nervous at first, the sight of familiar faces eased those tensions.
“I’m thinking it is probably going to give me some more confidence going into the real world. Now that I can see that my hard work is being rewarded, I’m doing something right obviously, so [the award] is going to build me more confidence,” Lewis said.
In addition to the awards, Kappa Tau Alpha inducted seven new members to its national honor society chapter. The organization recognizes students within the MCJ department with outstanding grades.
The induction was serviced by Fresno State faculty emeritus Greg Lewis, who stressed that academic success signifies something beyond a good letter grade – an individual’s determination to take on any task.
“Grades and outstanding work mean a lot more than letters from the beginning of the alphabet or a beautiful trophy. It’s not just Red Bull and Scantron form. It takes a lot of self-discipline and dedication to get to this point. You know it. You’ve been through it. You’re being honored because of something more,” Lewis said.