Sidelines celebrating Southeastern Journalism Conf...

Sidelines celebrating Southeastern Journalism Conference wins

MTSU Sidelines staffers display their awards from the Southeastern Journalism Conference in Martin, Tenn. From left are Will Trussler, awarded second place for sports writing; Amanda Haggard, Sidelines editor-in-chief and winner of Journalist of the Year; Becca Andrews, winner of the first-place award in arts and entertainment writing; and Todd Barnes, who was recognized in the Top 10 best entries for news reporting. (photo submitted)

MTSU’s student newspaper, Sidelines, came away from the Southeastern Journalism Conference in Martin, Tenn., this semester with a number of awards, including a first-place prize for arts and entertainment writing won by Becca Andrews.

Will Trussler received the second-place award for sports reporting.

Sidelines and its staffers also made the Top 10 in the following categories:

  • Best Newspaper;
  • Best Newspaper Design for Courtney Polivka;
  • News Reporting for Todd Barnes; and
  • Journalist of the Year for Editor-in-Chief Amanda Haggard).

MTSU competed against schools from Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana and Mississippi as well as other Tennessee colleges and universities.

“We are trying to make our print product really complementary to what we have on the Web (at,” says Leon Alligood, an MTSU journalism professor and Sidelines faculty adviser. “Our staffers are on a mission to create a newspaper that complements the Center for Integration in Media.”

— Kristy Hardin (