May 9, 2023
NYU Journalism announces 2023 Award Winners
The Faculty of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute at NYU is proud to announce the 2023 winners of our department awards. These honors are a testament to their tremendous talent, hard work and dedication to journalism. Their accomplishments are especially noteworthy considering that they attended classes remotely for almost three semesters during the Covid shutdown. We wish them great success as they take their next steps in their lives and careers.
Editor & Publisher Prize, Department Service Award, Marlene Sanders Award
Recipient of three awards: for excellence in journalistic writing, exceptional service to the journalism department, and excellence in print journalism.
Rachel Cohen is a journalism and politics student from northern New Jersey. Throughout her time at NYU, she served as the managing editor of the university’s independent, student-run newspaper, Washington Square News, where she had also been the news editor, deputy news editor, and a news staff writer. Outside of class, she is currently an intern for MSNBC’s The Rachel Maddow Show and Alex Wagner Tonight, assisting with the behind-the-scenes of producing both primetime shows, ranging from fact-checking segments to escorting guests. Her work has appeared in The Nation, Gotham Gazette, and other publications, and she is a recent winner of a Hearst Journalism Award for explanatory reporting.
Her senior capstone on the NYCHA was published on Medium, and her story on the COVID-19 response in the Navajo Nation, originally written for the Investigating Journalism course, was published by The Nation.
Joyce Kilmer Prize
For academic excellence in journalism.
Katherine Gross hails from Illinois, and is a double major in Journalism and Global Liberal Studies: Politics, Rights, and Development. At NYU, she is a Dean’s Research Grant recipient, the executive editor of IR Insider, NYU’s political journal, and a representative to the United Nations as a Millennium Fellow. Her vast portfolio—of reviews, features, news and even sports reporting—can be found here. Her piece on the Navajo Nation can be found here.
James Fenimore Cooper Memorial Prize for Excellence in Journalism
For overall excellence in journalism.
Originally from Buenos Aires and raised in Canada, Rocio Fabbro is a double major in International Relations and Journalism, with a minor in French. Throughout her undergraduate career, she has interned at V Magazine, Salon, CNBC, and Foreign Policy. On campus, she is the editor-in-chief of the student-run international relations publication, IR Insider, having previously served as both a writer and an editor. Her capstone on the pitfalls of fast fashion and sustainability ‘green-washing’ can be found here.
Anna and John Peter Zenger Award
For the highest academic excellence in journalism.
Samaa Khullar is an Indian-Palestinian-American journalist raised in Dubai, UAE, but now living in New York City. A Journalism and Middle Eastern/Islamic Studies double major, she writes for NYU’s student paper Washington Square News. Previously, she interned at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the Ancient Near East department, L’Officiel USA, and Salon.com, where she worked as a News and Politics fellow for the past 8 months. She has published over 140 articles for Salon, with some of them receiving widespread attention from outlets like MSNBC’s ‘The Joy Reid Show.’. She will be attending the Columbia School of Journalism in the fall for a graduate degree in investigative journalism from the Tony Stabile Center. Her featured stories include a profile on one of the most famous Palestinian fashion designers right now, and another on BIPOC therapists, with quotes from Dr. Christin Drake, the director of diversity, equity, and antiracism at NYU Langone Psychiatry. Both, she said, exemplify her goal “to always have social justice at the forefront of my writing.”
Alvin H. Zagor Memorial Prize*
Lily is a Journalism and Economics double major, with a minor in Politics. She enjoys writing about business and technology with a human-focused approach. During her time at the Institute, Lily held a journalism internship with CNBC and a legal internship with New York Legal Assistance Group. These experiences have fueled her interest in pursuing a career in law, which will enable her to continue advocating for social justice and promoting positive transformations in crucial industries.
*This is a CAS-wide award.
Don R. Mellett Prize
Awarded for excellence in broadcast journalism.
Born and raised in Beijing, China, River is a double major in Journalism and Cinema Studies. A highlighted piece of theirs hears from the biologists helping to clean up the marine debris in Biscayne National Park.
Zenith and Sidney Gross Memorial Prize
Awarded to graduate students who exhibit excellence in investigative reporting.
Giorgio Ghiotto is a passionate documentary filmmaker dedicated to raising awareness on human rights violations and environmental justice, with a special emphasis on advocating for indigenous communities. He has worked alongside the United Nations and various NGOs, and his most recent project involved investigating water pollution in Indigenous land in Peru caused by mining extraction and contemporary colonization. His documentary “NIHADA — Invisible dreams” for UNHCR premiered at the 28th Sarajevo Film Festival.
Nicole Guillen is a recent graduate of NYU’s News and Documentary journalism masters program. Originally from Miami, Florida, Nicole worked as a graduate assistant for program director Marcia Rock, and was accepted to pitch her thesis documentary Interrogated, which investigates the causes of false confessions and the history of interrogations in the U.S., at the Double Exposure Film Festival in Washington, D.C.
Marlene Sanders Award
Presented to students who exemplify the spirit, love of journalism, energy and drive of pioneering journalist Marlene Sanders.
Marlene Sanders Graduate Award (Print)
Melissa Rodman is a journalist and cultural critic based in New York. Her work has been published by The New Republic, Hazlitt, Bookforum, and The Arts Fuse, among others, and her audio reporting has been broadcast by The World on NPR. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in History & Literature, magna cum laude, from Harvard University and her Master of Arts degree in Cultural Reporting & Criticism from New York University’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, where she served as a Graduate Assistant and undergraduate course Teaching Assistant.
Her Work: Art historians debate identity of iconic Mariupol painter The World on NPR, March 17, 2023.
Marlene Sanders Graduate Award (Video)
Lyuwei Chen is an award-winning documentary director and producer from Hangzhou, China. She has earned her Master’s Degree in News and Documentary and has worked as a documentarian at TV stations and film production companies. While she has been at NYU, her documentary films have won awards for best documentary and best director at the New York International Film Festival, Cannes International Shorts, the International Manhattan Film Awards, and the IndieX Film Festival. As a director, producer, and DP, she worked with cinematographers, colorists, composers, and sound designers in the US, France, and China for her final thesis, the music documentary DUET, which was screened at NYU News and Doc. Film Festival.
*Note: Rachel Cohen is an additional recipient of this award in the Undergraduate category.
Edwin Diamond Award
Presented to outstanding graduate students in journalism—with the energy, enthusiasm, and skill of pioneering journalist and media critic Edwin Diamond.
Originally from Florida, Taylor Irish is a Journalism graduate student concentrating in Reporting The Nation & New York. From a young age, she loved to write and when she became a teenager, her passion for writing quickly turned into passion and curiosity about the world around her. For her, there was no better way to explore that than journalism. She is most proud of her profile of Cat Calls of NYC founder Sophie Sandberg and her article on the inequities of sentencing for drug-related offenses.
Laura Jedeed is a LitRep student who hails from Colorado and Oregon. Her work focuses primarily on American conservatism and the far right, and she has written for The New Republic, NYMag, and Rolling Stone.