The award is presented to a high school student journalist or a team of student journalists who showed determination, despite difficulty or resistance, in lawfully exercising First Amendment press rights.

This award may be earned by demonstrating the following criteria: overcoming particularly impactful personal issues; facing a hostile or problematic school administration; or other types of oversight or hindrances.

Recipients of the award will receive a plaque and recognition during the KSPA State Contest opening ceremony and be profiled on the KSPA website.

View the full description of the award and required materials here.

Past Courage in Journalism Award winners include:

  • 2018-19: Grace Altenhofen of Shawnee Mission North High School and Anna Cowden of Blue Valley Northwest High School
  • 2019-20: The staff of the Cub, the student newspaper of Sterling High School
  • 2020-21: Madeline Gearhart of Seaman High School
  • 2021-22: Emily Harter of Olathe West High School