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Mercer Student Newspaper Places Third in National Contest

May 3, 2011

Media Contact: Mark Vanderhoek, (478) 301-4037 or

MACON – Mercer University’s student newspaper, The Cluster, placed third in a recent national newspaper competition, sponsored by the Society for Collegiate Journalists. The contest, sponsored yearly by the Society for Collegiate Journalists, is open to all 155 colleges and universities that have chapters.

The Cluster placed third for overall excellence in the category for newspapers published weekly or less. The paper took home six awards in all, including first place for front page design, editorial page design, and best ad portfolio and third place for news page design and sports page design.

“I’m glad to see the staff’s hard work recognized,” said senior Morgan Riley, outgoing president of Mercer’s chapter of SCJ and co-editor in chief of The Cluster. “The Cluster never ceases to amaze me. The awards truly reflect the talent here and I love the standard we’re creating for journalism at Mercer. Everyone should be beyond proud because we’re doing great things.”

Jay Black, journalism professor and faculty adviser for SCJ, said the school’s chapter of SCJ has contributed to the paper’s success.

“SCJ’s mission on campus is to promote the media, and by actively doing that we created awareness,” he said. “This added awareness has put pressure on The Cluster staff to be that much better.”

Mercer has also been selected to host the Society for Collegiate Journalists 2012 Biannual Conference on March 9-11, 2012.

The Society for Collegiate Journalists promotes and expands media on college campuses. It places a strong emphasis on service and expects its members to take leadership roles in campus media. Mercer’s SCJ chapter was established in 2007.

About Mercer University
Founded in 1833, Mercer University is a dynamic and comprehensive center of undergraduate, graduate and professional education. The University enrolls more than 8,200 students in 11 schools and colleges – liberal arts, law, pharmacy, medicine, business, engineering, education, theology, music, nursing and continuing and professional studies – on major campuses in Macon, Atlanta and Savannah and at four regional academic centers across the state. Mercer is affiliated with two teaching hospitals — Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah and the Medical Center of Central Georgia in Macon, and has educational partnerships with Warner Robins Air Logistics Center in Warner Robins and Piedmont Healthcare in Atlanta. The University operates an academic press and a performing arts center in Macon and an engineering research center in Warner Robins. Mercer is the only private university in Georgia to field an NCAA Division I athletic program. For more information, visit
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