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Pulitzer Center Update March 29, 2018

SPJ Selects Seven Student Fellows as Mark of Excellence Regional Award Finalists

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Image by Neeta Satam. India, 2017.
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The floating islands of Loktak Lake, known as “phumdis,” are home to unique animals and plants and...

The 2017 Student Fellowship reported from over 27 countries around the world on topics ranging from mental health to environmental issues. Image by Jin Ding. United States, 2017.
The 2017 Student Fellows reported from over 27 countries around the world on topics ranging from mental health to environmental issues. Image by Jin Ding. United States, 2017.

Seven Pulitzer Center student fellows have been selected as finalists for the 2018 Mark of Excellence Awards presented by the Society of Professional Journalists. The awards, whose winners will be announced during each region's spring conference, honor work done by student journalists across the globe in the categories of print, radio, television, and online.

"Navigating the Death Penalty in Pakistan," a project by two fellows from Northwestern University in Qatar, Shakeeb Asrar and Urooj Kamran Azmi, has been named a national finalist and the Region 5 winner of the Online/Digital News Videography category. Their work examines the impact of Pakistan's lifting of the death penalty, including the situation of convicts executed without fair trials. 

Boston University fellow Nikita Sampath is a finalist in the Online/Digital News Videography category for this year's Region 1 Mark of Excellence Awards. She received the honor because of her short video on climate change and floating hospitals, published with an accompanying article online at National Geographic, from her reporting project, "Land Under Water: Living With the Effects of Climate Change in Bangladesh."

Flagler College fellow, Jessie Rowan, has been selected as a finalist for Region 2's Feature Photography awards. Her project investigates how lack of education, insulin, and essential supplies affects the lives of young Costa Ricans living with Type 1 Diabetes.

Yardain Amron, of the University of Michigan, has been named a Region 4 finalist for Online Feature Reporting for his project, "India: Migrating Into Slavery," which investigates India's role in modern debt bondage. 

Two projects have been recognized from Region 5. Ryan Michalesko, of Southern Illinois University Carbondale, has been named the winner in the Region 5 Feature Photography category for his project, "Puerto Rico: Crisis in the Caribbean" highlighting the continued struggles faced by Puerto Ricans in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria.

For her project, "Manipur: Where the Islands Float," University of Missouri Fellow and Region 7 finalist, Neeta Satam, is being recognized in the Feature Photography category. Her work reveals how developments such as hydroelectric dams and regional armed conflict are threatening Loktak Lake's unique wetland ecosystem. 

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Image by Mehdi Hassan Khan.
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To counter terrorism, the Pakistani government has started executing all those convicted of...

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A UXO Lao demonstration in the Xieng Khouang Province in northern Laos. Image by Erin McGoff. Laos, 2017.
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Erin McGoff is producing a full-length feature independent documentary titled "Little Land of Mines"...

Women working at a small, temporary brick factory in Malda village. While most of the laborers at this factory were local relatives of the owner, the industry is notorious for exploiting migrant labor. Image by Yardain Amron. India, 2016.
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Each winter hundreds of thousands of Indians migrate north to man the world's second largest brick...

Rosalda Olma, a wife and mother to three kids, opens the front door to what remains of her home in Loiza. The entire home and contents were destroyed by the hurricane, and the family is living in a nearby school for the time being. “It’s hard getting used to these living conditions,” she said. “All five of us are trying to fit inside a single room.” Image by Ryan Michalesko. Puerto Rico, 2017.
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Weeks after Hurricane Maria made landfall in Puerto Rico, the island continues its battle for food...

Type 1 diabetes might be for life, but the disease can be managed through proper supplies, insulin, education and support—all lacking in many parts of Costa Rica. Image by Jessie Rowan. Costa Rica, 2017.
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How do youth with Type 1 diabetes live with and manage a disease in a country where proper supplies...

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While the developed world continues to deliberate climate change, the seas have already found their...

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