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Students win national ethics award

The Crimson White’s Abbey Crain, Matt Ford and Mazie Bryant have won the 2014 national Ancil Payne Award for Ethics in Journalism for “The Final Barrier,” the newspaper’s┬áSept. 11, 2013 story that detailed allegations of racial discrimination within The University of Alabama’s sorority recruitment process. The story led to the immediate desegregation of the sorority system on campus.

The award, sponsored by The University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication, carries with it a $5,000 cash prize, and an all-expenses paid trip to Eugene, Ore. to accept the honor on May 15.

“The Ancil Payne Award recognizes journalists who demonstrate an extraordinary commitment to ethical conduct, even when faced with economic, personal, or political pressure,” said Julianne Newton, interim dead of The University of Oregon’s communication school. “Certainly these three journalists, as members of the university and Greek communities, faced each of these in pressure from administrators, the system, sources and friends to ‘leave it alone.'”

This is the second national award won by the three Crimson White journalists. The Associated Collegiate Press and the Student Press Law Center honored Crain, Ford and Bryant last fall with the College Press Freedom Award.