One of eight student winners from across the country, Kayla Mayer ’22 won the Hard News Audio Excellence Award. Mayer spent his pre-graduation summer at KWIT-KOJIwhere she produced the winning story on food insecurity in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
A double major in digital media arts and English, Mayer said the victory came as a complete surprise.
“It was a complete shock…even now he’s sinking,” Mayer said. “But it feels good to be recognized.”
The Edward R. Murrow Awards are presented annually by the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA). Considered by many in the industry to be the highest honor for professional journalists, Mayer said the win was encouraging as she plans to begin her career in broadcast news.
“It’s affirming to know that, yeah, I worked really hard in college,” Mayer said. “Now, after doing all this work, I can say, OK, this is the right path for me.”
Mayer believes her time at the University of St. Thomas helped set her on a path to success, giving her both professional skills and the drive to tell stories for the greater good.
“I’m very grateful for my experience at St. Thomas because I was able to get hands-on experience,” Mayer said. “Along with the Catholic institutional mindset, there’s also a focus on the common good, and that certainly inspired me for what I wrote the story about.”
An active member of the Emerging Media Department, Mayer’s faculty remember her as an outstanding student.
“Kayla was a student who took full advantage of everything eMedia has to offer, from classes at TommieMedia to the TV studio. emerging media, Mark Neuzil.
Mayer is excited to put her education to the test this month, as she begins her career as a video news editor at KSTP-TV in the Twin Cities. No matter where life takes her, Mayer is excited to continue telling great stories.
“My goal is to keep telling stories. That’s really what I like,” Mayer said.