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2016 RTDNAC Scholarship Winners

Jaclyn Lee & Abbey O’Brien
NC Scholarship Winner

Jaclyn Lee is a junior at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill majoring in Broadcast Journalism and also Peace, War and Defense.

Jaclyn has traveled from her home in Newbury Park, California to attend UNC-Chapel Hill. During her academic career she has earned a number of honors. Among them, a place in the Robertson Scholars Leadership Program which allows Jaclyn full-time student privileges at both UNC-Chapel Hill and Duke University. She is a student in the Honors Carolina Program at UNC-Chapel Hill. In January 2016 she won 1st Place in the Hearst Foundation’s National Television Features Competition. She will move onto the National Semi-Finals.

Jaclyn’s practical experience in journalism includes student activities such as two years of reporting for the student-run Daily Tar Heel. During that time she covered the protests related to the police-involved shootings in Ferguson, Missouri. She has worked as a multi-media journalist for “Carolina Week” since 2014. The program is seen on UNC-CH’s student-run TV station.

Jaclyn has also traveled to other countries as a reporter or researcher. That experience includes spending May and June 2015 in Peru, June and July of 2015 in Rwanda and September through December 2015 in China. Jaclyn began a news internship at WRAL in Raleigh in January of 2016.

One of Jaclyn’s references is one of her professors at UNC-CH. He wrote in his letter, ”Simply put, she is one of the best. Not just this year. Ever. She is a terrific television reporter and anchor. She is dedicated to getting better every day.”

SC Scholarship Winner

Abbey O’Brien of Acworth, Georgia is a senior majoring in Broadcast Journalism at the University of South Carolina.

Academically, Abbey is a recipient of a South Carolina Broadcasters Association Scholarship. She is a 2014 recipient of a USC Passport Travel Grant to conduct research, create a broadcast piece and study journalism in Germany. Due to her academic achievement, Abbey was selected to be a student in the USC Honors College. She has earned a place on the Dean’s List every semester she has been enrolled at USC. Her current GPA is 3.99. Abbey was selected for the 2016 list of “Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges.

Abbey’s journalism work experience includes rotating among many positions with “Carolina News,” a newscast produced by senior students in the College of Journalism. She worked as a news intern at WIS-TV in Columbia SC during the summer of 2014. Abbey spent the summer of 2015 in New York as an intern on NBC’s Today Show.

In addition to her work in journalism, Abbey has held numerous positions in campus service organizations throughout her university career.

In one of Abbey’s letters of reference, a professor wrote,” When Columbia was struck by severe flooding in October (2015) and USC cancelled classes for an entire week, Abbey was one of just eight senior journalism students who volunteered that week to help produce a half-hour special report.”

Upon graduation in May of 2016, Abbey hopes to secure a job as a multi-media journalist (MMJ) at a local station to “make a difference in my community.”