UNT media arts students win big - including top TV station - at Broadcast Education Association Awards

Thursday, March 8, 2018 - 19:00

DENTON (UNT), Texas - When Department of Media Arts students and faculty from the University of North Texas go to Las Vegas in April, they already know they are winners.

They will pick up 16 awards – including “National Signature Station” for ntTV – at the Broadcast Education Association’s Annual Festival of Media Arts, which is sponsored by the Charles and Lucille King Family Foundation, during the BEA’s convention April 7-10.

Phyllis Slocum, the faculty advisor for ntTV and principal lecturer in media arts, was thrilled when she found out ntTV was named the best college TV station in the nation. ntTV had to submit a compilation of work from the year that included a full range of programming, such as news and sports clips, marketing and social media posts.

 “It only confirms my belief that our students are the best,” Slocum said.
“The TV station is a mirror for the work that they do. It’s a reflection of their passion, creativity and their enjoyment of doing things.”

Justin Black, senior media arts major, won one of the major individual awards – the Student Scriptwriting “2018 Best of Festival” Award for his screenplay “Honey Hunt.” The script is about a rat named Pierce who is on the hunt for a legendary honeycomb so his town can be freed from a pack of wolves that captured it.

 “It shows a sense of progress for me because I tried really hard to examine all these skills that a professional needs, and to win something for my effort shows that I’m succeeding and understanding it,” said Black, who wants to direct animated films for his career.

Other wins come from individual films and departmental TV shows, including “Late Night @ North Texas” and “ntTV Nightly News.

Faculty members also won for papers they wrote. Alan Albarran, professor of media arts, and Gavin Rhoades, a master’s of arts student in media industry and critical studies, received second place for a paper they wrote together. Xiaoqun Zhang, assistant professor of media arts, also received a second place award in the international division for one of his papers.

This year’s contest attracted more than 1,540 entries from 175 colleges and universities. Winners receive $1,000.

Here is the complete list of UNT winners: 

Sergio Almendariz: 2nd Place Documentary: Long Form Film/Video, “On Losing a Parent”

Valarie Gold: Award of Excellence Film/Video: Animation/Experimental/Mixed, “A Guy Prepares for the Day”

Taylor Hearne: 3rd Place Film/Video: Music Video, “Cigarette Burns”

Patrick Moccia: Award of Excellence Film/Video: Narrative, “Don't Wake Up”

Samantha McDaniel: Award of Excellence Film/Video: Narrative, “All Smiles”

Alex Alerasoul: Award of Excellence Film/Video: Narrative, “Happenstance”

Brandon Rivera: 1st Place Film/Video: Spots 15-90 seconds, “Balloon Safety”

Alexa Reynolds, Josey Jagielo, Teresa Diaz and Delaney Nelson: Award of Excellence Film/Video: Studio, “Late Night @ North Texas”

Jaci Mask, Quinn Arrington and Blake Holland: Award of Excellence TV Newscast: 4 or more per week, “ntTV Nightly News”

Justin Black: Student Scriptwriting "2018 Best of Festival” Award, “Honey Hunt” (Feature Category)

Eric Barbara: 2nd Place Scriptwriting: Feature, “Cerebrum”

Derwin Graham: Award of Excellence Scriptwriting: Feature, “HOOD”

Brian Welch: Award of Excellence Scriptwriting: Feature, “The Horror of Social Intercourse”

Alan Albarran and Gavin Rhoades: 2nd Place Open Paper Award, "CBS-Entercom and the Reverse Morris Trust: Implications for the Radio Industry and Future Media Mergers and Acquisitions"

Xiaoqun Zhang: 2nd Place Open Paper Award (International), “Exploring the Themes in the U.S. Media Coverage of ‘The Great Wall’ Film”