TKS students work on newspaper in publication office. #


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Student Newspaper Named 2017 Pacemaker Finalist

September 28, 2017

TKS students work on newspaper in publication office.

Bailey Musselman ‘18

Knox College's student-run newspaper, The Knox Student (TKS), was named one of 43 finalists for the Associated College Press Newspaper Pacemaker award, often referred to as the Pulitzer Prize of collegiate journalism.

"TKS has had a steady line of strong editors with talented and diligent staffs," said Tom Martin, editor of Galesburg's The Register-Mail and TKS advisor since 2009. "They take journalism seriously, and the awards show that."

Martin says he has witnessed continuous progress in the paper over the years. "The staff earned best in state recognition in 2010, 2013, and again in 2017. By 2012 the editors began entering national contests and bringing home awards," said Martin. "Now, TKS has a second Pacemaker finalist designation in three years, which puts TKS with the best collegiate newspapers in the country."

Along with the Pacemaker award, the Associated College Press (ACP) announced that last year's editor-in-chief, Rachel Landman '17, is in the running for the 2017 Reporter of the Year. Sofia Tagkaloglou's discourse piece titled "I'm Sorry, Knox" is also a 2017 finalist for Opinion Writing

"Three awards in the annual ACP conference is entirely new ground for TKS. We've never had even two in one year," said Martin. "Pacemaker is the big award, but Reporter of the Year is also prestigious. Only 10 college reporters in the nation earned that distinction."

Current editor-in-chief, Erika Riley ‘19, originally joined TKS because she was involved in the student paper during high school. When she attended her first TKS meeting, Riley was attracted to the passion she discovered in the publication office.

"I could tell that everyone really cared. All the editors were really excited about what they were doing and doing it really well," said Riley. "The way that everybody was friends with each other but also got such great work done, made me want to be a part of it."

The Knox Student was founded in 1878 by S.S. McClure who, after graduating from Knox, created McClure's Magazine, one of the first publications in the field of American investigative journalism.

The winners of the Pacemaker award will be announced at the National College Media Convention, October 25-29, in Dallas, Texas.

"It an historic year for TKS, even if none of the nominations become winners later this month in Dallas. It's sort of like the Oscar's in that being nominated puts you in elite company," said Martin.

The Knox Student: Award History


  • 2017: Pacemaker Finalist Award - Associated College Press
  • 2016: Nominated for News Story of the Year in Associated College Press
  • 2015: ACP Honorable Mention for Feature Story - Kate Mishkin
  • 2014: Pacemaker Finalist Award - Associated College Press
  • 2014: Best All-Around Non Daily Student Newspaper, in Region 5 (Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky) - Society of Professional Journalism
  • 2013: Fourth place for News Story of the Year - Associated College Press contest
  • 2012: Seventh place for Best of Show (4-year colleges on tabloid paper) - Associated Collegiate Press

STATE AWARDS (Illinois Collegiate Press Association/entries from previous calendar year)

  • 2017: 20 awards (7 first, General Excellence) Editor-in-chief, Rachel Landman ‘17
  • 2016: 19 awards (10 firsts) Editor-in-chief, Kate Mishkin ‘16 
  • 2015: 12 awards (4 firsts) Editor-in-chief, Julian Boireau '15
  • 2014: 18 awards (5 firsts, second in General Excellence) Editor-in-chief, Charlie Megenity '14
  • 2013: 14 awards (5 firsts, including General Excellence) Editor-in-chief, Anna Meier '13
  • 2012: 18 awards (4 first places) Editor-in-chief, John Williams '12
  • 2011: 19 awards (7 first places; second place General Excellence) Editor-in-chief, Annette Zak '11

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#"Even if we go to Texas and don't win at all, we're really proud."—Erika Riley '19

Advisor Tom Martin (left) and editor Erika Riley (right) talking to newspaper staff at organizational meeting for TKS, The Knox Student.

#"They [students] do it all, from determining stories to getting papers on racks." —Tom Martin, TKS advisor

Knox College

Printed on Wednesday, October 18, 2017

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