News Roundup

Summer job blight, China squad's first black soccer player

NABJ Names Michele Norris  Journalist of the Year

michele-norrisThe National Association of Black Journalists named National Public Radio host Michele Norris  its journalist of the year for her “crisp, bold, assertive, and heart-warming reporting” during the 2008 presidential election.

Norris moderated more than 15 hours of conversations throughout the fall election between voters of different races from York, Penn. The participants shared candid and revealing thoughts that were aired in six segments on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” which she hosts, and “Morning Edition.”

“A reporter and news analyst of the highest regard, Michele’s reporting during the election delivered great thought and perspective on race during Barack Obama’s historic candidacy,” Ciara said in a press release.

Norris won the NABJ Salute to Excellence Award in 2006 for her coverage of Hurricane Katrina. She has also received an Emmy and a Peabody Award for reporting she did with ABC during 9/11.

Also receiving accolades is sports writer and co-host Michael Wilbon of The Washington Post and ESPN who will receive NABJ’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Wilbon is one of fewer than 20 black sports columnists at major daily newspapers in America. NABJ identified Cynthia Gordy, a Washington correspondent for Essence Magazine,  as Emerging Journalist of the Year.

CNN anchor T.J. Holmes will host the Salute to Excellence Awards Gala in August in Tampa, Fla.

Marcia A. Wade

More Students Using Credit Cards for Education Expenses

graduationeducationA rising number of college students are using credit cards to cover tuition, according to a study released by educational lender Sallie Mae earlier this month.

On average, students charged $2,200 in direct education expenses in 2008, more than double the 2004 average of $942, according to the study that examines credit card use of student loan applicants.

“Too many students are at risk of overpaying for college by pulling out credit cards to pay for textbooks or even part of their tuition bill, instead of using less expensive financial aid to cover these items,” said Marie O’Malley, director of consumer research for Sallie Mae and author of the study, in a statement.

Nearly 30% of borrowers charged tuition to their credit cards, an increase from 24%  in 2004 when the study was last conducted.

What’s more, a whopping 92% of undergraduate credit-card holders charged textbooks, school supplies, or other direct education expenses, up from 85% in the previous study.

To address the problem, Sallie Mae is urging students to create and follow a financial plan to ensure responsible spending. Education and financial institutions, as well as parents, should also provide students with information on how to use credit wisely.

Renita Burns

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