Summer Internship Contest Recognizes Thirteen for Outstanding Journalism Work

By Craig Weiland

Columbia, Mo. (Nov. 13, 2006) — Thirteen students in the magazine journalism and newspaper journalism emphasis areas at the Missouri School of Journalism were recognized for outstanding work produced while working at summer internships.

“Judging the work of our students over the summer is a job I relish, as it reminds me of just how advanced some of our student journalists are and of the fine work they do,” said Charles Davis, associate professor and executive director of the National Freedom of Information Coalition. “There are some amazing stories in that contest, and we should applaud all of our students for the real-world journalism they’re doing every day.”

Davis and Reuben Stern, managing editor, Columbia Missourian, served as judges.

Sponsored by the newspaper journalism emphasis area, the contest was open to all journalism students. Entries could be submitted in one of six categories: profiles, features, in-depth reporting, breaking news, editorials/opinion and sports. Winners will receive award certificates.

Andrew Astleford David Buck Joel Erickson Katie Fretland Samantha Friedman Matthew Haag Derek Kravitz
Isabel Ordóñez Taylor Rausch John Sahly Adam Schreck Megan Schumacher Anna Scianna

Top row, from left: Andrew Astleford, David Buck, Joel Erickson, Katie Fretland, Samantha Friedman, Matthew Haag, Derek Kravitz. Second row: Isabel Ordóñez, Taylor Rausch, John Sahly, Adam Schreck, Megan Schumacher, Anna Scianna.

Katie Fretland, who interned with The Associated Press London, won first place in the Breaking News category for her story, “11 Charged in British Airline Bomb Plot.”

“It was one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences I’ve had as a reporter,” Fretland said. “I covered many aspects of the plot by writing profiles of the suspects, covering court appearances and the breaking news of the charges. The most memorable part was trudging through the woods and nearly getting arrested where police were searching for explosives near the homes of several of the suspects.”

Isabel Ordóñez’ story for Reuters, “Iraq, Afghanistan Lure Poor Latin American Guards,” was picked up by numerous Web sites and published in several languages around the world. Ordóñez was also interviewed by NPR about the story, which won first-place in the In-Depth category.

“One of the interesting things for me is that the story is not black and white, because though the working conditions for these men in Iraq are difficult, most of them are happier working there than being unemployed in their countries,” Ordóñez said.

Andrew Astleford won first place in the Profile category for “Joining the Family,” a story detailing new MU men’s basketball coach Mike Anderson and his efforts to build a “family atmosphere” around the program. Astleford sees each new assignment as a chance to learn.

“To me, when I pause to observe how a subject reacts to his or her environment, the story comes alive. This is when things get exciting,” Astleford said.

Winners, entry titles and publications in the five categories are as follows.


  • First Place: Andrew Astleford, “Joining the Family” (Columbia Missourian)
  • Honorable Mention: Samantha Friedman, “Charles John Penix” (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette)
  • Honorable Mention: Isabel Ordóñez, “A Life in Words” (Adelante, Columbia Missourian)
  • Honorable Mention: Taylor Rausch, “Jim Stevenson” (Boone County Daily Sun, Lebanon, Ind.)


  • First Place: Derek Kravitz, “A Lost Parenthood, an Uneasy Reunion” (Omaha (Neb.) World Herald)
  • Honorable Mention: Megan Schumacher, “The Big Logoff” (Orlando (Fla.) Weekly)


  • First Place: Isabel Ordóñez, “Iraq, Afghanistan Lure Poor Latin American Guards” (Reuters)
  • Honorable Mention: Adam Schreck, “G-8 Leaders Face Array of Issues at Russia Summit” (The Wall Street Journal Online)

Breaking News

  • First Place: Katie Fretland, “11 Charged in British Airline Bomb Plot” (Associated Press London)
  • Honorable Mention: Matthew Haag, “Victim’s Wife Tells Holdup Story” (Dallas Morning News)
  • Honorable Mention: Anna Scianna, “Father, 4 Kids Shot Dead” (Modesto (Calif.) Bee)


  • First Place: Megan Schumacher, “Council Watch” (Orlando (Fla.) Weekly)


  • First Place: Joel Erickson, “These Eagles Still Dare” (The Sunday Voice, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.)
  • Honorable Mention: David Buck, “Soccer Study Claims Betting on the Beautiful Game Can Beat Sex” (Associated Press)
  • Honorable Mention: John Sahly, “Thirty Years Ago, Homer King Hit His Last” (

Craig J. Weiland, BA ’96, is senior multimedia specialist at the MU Office of Research, where he produces and maintains Web sites for the Research Division and Illumination Magazine. Craig also has been a regular columnist for the Columbia Business Times and the Jefferson City Business Times. He will graduate with his master’s degree in 2007 from the Missouri School of Journalism.

Updated: April 15, 2020

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