Journalism Student Wins Provincial Reporting Award
Broadcast Journalism student Melanie Anderson has won the Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario (RNAO) Award for Excellence in Health-Care Reporting.
Anderson, a second-year student in the Fanshawe-Western collaborative Media Theory and Production program, received her award at a banquet on Friday, April 16, 2010, at the Hilton Hotel in Toronto, as part of RNAO's Annual General Meeting. Winners were chosen from 44 entries representing large and small media outlets across Ontario, and Anderson won in the student category for a radio documentary on the need for a nationally-coordinated system for organ and tissue donation and transplantation.
This isn't Anderson's first province-wide award. While in high school, she also won an award for a commercial she produced about teen drug and alcohol awareness. Since then, she has spent her time at The University of Western Ontario and Fanshawe College developing her skills in newscasting, reporting, interviewing and producing documentaries. Her passion, she admits, is health reporting.
"I've always had a keen interest in health issues," says Anderson. "Fanshawe has given me the tools to develop my production, interviewing, and broadcasting skills."
Her six-minute audio documentary, adapted from a class project, features life story accounts to facilitate organ donation awareness. She highlights the severe shortage of organs, and the critical importance of signing an organ donor consent form.
"Most people simply disregard the topic of being a possible gift of life," she says. "Organ donation affects everyone, and something as simple as signing a donor card can really make a difference."
Anderson, who is close family friends with an organ transplant recipient, was thrilled to be recognized for her work along with several industry professionals whose work she admires, including Global Television's Beatrice Politi.
"Receiving the award was a huge honour for me," she says. "It has provided me with the encouragement to continue my passion for health reporting in the future."
According to the RNAO, the professional association representing registered nurses throughout Ontario, Anderson's reaction is exactly what the awards are designed to encourage.
"As an organization that speaks out for health, health care and the nursing profession, we are proud to confer these awards, recognizing excellence in health reporting," says RNAO President Wendy Fucile. "These journalists have excelled at showing the impact that health and health care reporting have on the public and health professionals in Ontario."