LEXINGTON, Ky. (4/21/14) — Wendy Turner of Paul Laurence Dunbar High School has received the 2014 James L. Highland Media Adviser of the Year Award.
This statewide honor recognizes a Kentucky high school media teacher who actively supports and protects the First Amendment rights of students through inspiring high ethical and professional standards. It also applauds the adviser’s outstanding achievements in media classrooms and student publications and broadcasts.
The award comes via the Kentucky High School Media Institute, which is based at Western Kentucky University’s School of Journalism and Broadcasting. Turner received her plaque April 11 at the Mark of Excellence Contest award ceremony in Bowling Green.
“I am very proud of the serious nature of the work that we produce and the compliments we receive about not only our writing and design, but about the professionalism and leadership of our staff,” said Turner, who has advised the Lamplighter staff at Dunbar since 2006. “Watching students go on to enter careers as journalists is the most fulfilling aspect of my job.”
Senior Madi Bledsoe, current editor-in-chief of the Lamplighter, praised Turner’s guidance. “Not only has my writing improved tremendously, I have also learned how to lead a staff of my peers,” Madi said. “That’s not an easy task, but Mrs. Turner has taught me so much that I am confident in my abilities.”
Amanda Elizabeth Hancock, who graduated in 2011, echoed Madi’s assessment. “As our adviser, (Mrs. Turner) offered a perfect balance of advice and independence to create a student newspaper that was polished and meaningful,” she said. “Mrs. Turner never stopped pushing me, yet she was always my most formidable support system.”
Tanner Curtis, a 2007 Dunbar graduate, also wrote in support of Turner’s nomination. “She gave me confidence, and she taught me to push myself, to think critically and to explore my passions,” Curtis said. “She even worked with me to craft an independent study course in photojournalism, which better prepared me to attend WKU, and eventually, to work as a photo editor at TIME.”
Information provided by Fayette County Public Schools
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