Honors Student Wins Investigative Reporters & Editors Award

June 20, 2017

Honors student Elizabeth Campbell is among 31 Carnegie-Knight News21 fellows to win an Investigative Reporters & Editors Award in the category “Study Reporting Large.” Campbell and her team won for Voting Wars, a project that documented voter disenfranchisement leading into the 2016 U.S. election. In a nationwide investigation, the student reporters revealed “erosions in voter rights and scant evidence of voter fraud in states that had changed their voting requirements since 2012.” The IRE judges commented that the students had “matched or outpaced professional publications” and that “they went beyond national politics” in their reporting of voter rights and restriction across the United States. In addition to the prestigious IRE award, the Voting Wars investigation has received national media attention.

Campbell specifically worked on “Five Things to Know about Millennials and Politics” for the Voting Wars project. In this piece, Campbell and her co-authors describe millennials by first exploring the stereotypes of this generation in a video featuring Campbell. The authors then lay out five actual trends of the millennial generation in an article, which highlights that “many young Americans do care about politics. They may just show it differently than their more-traditional parents.” Campell also worked directly on “College Students Face Unique Challenges Casting a Vote” and “Texas’ Controversial Voter ID Law Can’t Stop Mail-in Ballot Fraud.”

A senior, Campbell is majoring in journalism and political science. She has worked with TCU student media publications, as well interned for CBS News’ Face the Nation. Campbell’s fellowship with News21 is the result of a nomination by the program dean or director, and she was awarded the fellowship based on her quality of journalism, multimedia skills, investigative reporting skills, ability to work collaboratively, and her commitment to journalism as a career. The Voting Wars project is a testament to Campbell’s success as a News21 fellow.

Campbell notes that while she always enjoyed political journalism, her time conducting field research for Voting Wars inspires her to continue researching “how information is crucial in the world of politics.” She looks forward to working on her Honors thesis, which will “focus on when politicians’ tweets make news and the impact they have on policy.”

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