Announcing the Audrey Niblo Award

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The Spectrum Newspaper is announcing the launch of The Audrey Niblo Award for Excellence in Reporting and Writing. This award is being developed as part of an annual program to honor the memory of junior Audrey Niblo who was a staff writer for Spectrum in the spring 2018 semester. Niblo passed away from a heart condition on May 1.

The purpose of the award is to recognize those students who use the voice of campus media to promote the ideals that Niblo expressed in her life. These include speaking out against negative behaviors like bullying and promoting positive alternatives that build self-esteem and promote healthy lifestyle choices.

“Audrey shined a light on whatever she did,” said Prof. Joanne Kabak, who is the faculty advisor for Spectrum and who taught Niblo in class.

“Whether she was writing an article on a favorite subject like ice cream or doing a profile on a student leader, she approached her subject with a sense of joyful curiosity and a commitment to hard work,” said Kabak.

In addition to her role as reporter on Spectrum, Niblo was also a writer for HerCampus and a sister in Theta Phi Alpha Fraternity.

“Audrey found so much happiness at Sacred Heart, stating she felt that she had ‘finally made it’ shortly after starting there,” said John Niblo, Audrey’s father, in a statement issued by her family.

Speaking on behalf of the family, he said, “We believe the resources at Sacred Heart University make it the ideal place to carry on the mission that was expressed through her life.”

In addition to the program sponsored by Spectrum, the university has established a fund to receive gifts from family, friends, and others who support the causes that Audrey was passionate about. It is expected that the fund will be used to develop and support activities both on campus and in outreach to the community.

“Audrey’s spirit was woven intricately into the fabric of the Sacred Heart mission. She embraced life with tremendous fortitude and compassion for others,” states the website set up for the fund. The link to the site is www.sacredheart.edu/aniblo.

For its part, Spectrum is seeking students who are interested in working as a team with experienced editors on the staff to identify topics, write articles, and use photography and video to spread awareness of the problems that affect young people before and during college, and to identify realistic solutions and resources. The content that is generated will be published throughout the year by Spectrum in print and online.

A global email will be sent out shortly with more details and a way to apply to be a part of this effort. At the end of the academic year, students whose contributions fulfilled the purposes of the program will be recognized and receive The Audrey Niblo Award with its associated grant from Spectrum.

“On behalf of the editorial board, we are honored to remember Audrey in the way she would have wanted, by spreading positivity even in difficult situations,” said Spectrum Editor in Chief, senior Victoria Mescall. “Audrey is very missed but her legacy will live on through this work of heart.”

For more information you can contact Prof. Kabak by email at  kabakj@sacredheart.edu.

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