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Mills public radio makes waves

Sarah Gonzalez

The Mills College Intermediate Pubic Radio 2006-2007 students won three awards for their documentary, “The Drop Out Dilemma.”

The piece, which aired on National Public Radio affiliate KALW in San Francisco, focused on Oakland public schools and their recent reform movements.

The reporting team, including Carmen Aiken, Hallee Berg, Thea Chroman, Sandhya Dirks, Sarah Gonzalez, Jackie Kennedy, Melissa McDonough and Shira Zucker, won two Gracie Allen awards under the direction of Public Radio instructor Holly Kernan.

The piece won Outstanding Series and Outstanding Documentary in the student category of American Women in Radio and Television.

On May 29, there will be an awards ceremony in New York City’s Tavern on the Green in Central Park West.

“The Drop Out Dilemma” also won an award in the radio category of the National Awards for Education Reporting.
This prestigious annual contest did not have a student category. Defeating professional competitors from across the nation, the Mill students were awarded second place.

Since the start of the public radio program in 2005, Kernan has led Mills students to five awards.

The 2005-2006 class was collectively awarded Student Journalist of the Year by the Northern California Society of Professional Journalists, for their mini documentaries on redevelopment in Oakland.

In the 2006-2007 introductory class, Sarah Gonzalez won a first place award in Public Radio News Directors Incorporated student category. The report was “Prostitution in Oakland.”

To listen to “The Drop Out Dilemma” or any other public radio stories produced through the Mills program log onto and search “Deep Oakland.”