2023 Hawaii Journalist of the Year Application Information


Each year Hawaii recognizes a student Journalist of the Year. The student must be a senior who has been involved in student journalism for at least one year. The journalist could work for their school newspaper, yearbook, broadcast media, … . What matters is that they have evidence of work in rubric categories.

Here is a link to the HiJOY rubric. The student must write a Personal Narrative and provide evidence of work in the following three categories:  Reporting/Writing, Editing/Leadership/Teamwork, and Law/Ethics/News Literacy, plus evidence from one choice category. Evidence for more than one of the choice categories can earn the student extra points.

The evidence must be presented in a website. Here is a video showing how to use Wix, one option to create a portfolio. Another option is WordPress. Here is a video with some ideas for how to get started on Wix.

Here is the portfolio of the HiJOY winners for 2022 (Mid-Pacific Institute) and 2021 (Kamehameha Maui.)

Please note that in 2022 and 2021, the HiJOY contest required evidence for ALL the categories. Many Hawaii student journalists and advisers said this was too much, so the requirements for HiJOY 2023 have been modified. 

Hawaii’s chapter of the Asian American Journalist Association is sponsoring the 2023 HiJOY: $250 for 1st place and $150 for 2nd place.

The student must email [email protected] by Jan. 15, 2023, to indicate intent to participate so the state JEA director can find the necessary number of judges.

The deadline for application entry for Hawaii is Feb. 15., 2023. All submissions will be online. The online entry form is located here.

The HiJOY winner’s portfolio will be submitted to the national Journalism Education Association’s Journalist of the Year contest. The national competition has additional requirements. The HiJOY winner is not required to revise and/or add more evidence but doing so will increase competitiveness. The national deadline is Mar. 15. Here is a link to last year’s national JOY winner. Here is a podcast interview with her. The national winner gets $5000 and four runners-up each get $1000.

Please email [email protected]  or [email protected] with any questions.

Here are some other useful links.

The second-place Hawaii winner in 2022 made an advice video for those interested in entering this contest. Remember that in 2022, HiJOY entrants had to provide evidence in ALL the categories.

For advice videos from JEA on building the portfolio, go hereRemember that the HiJOY requirements differ from the national competition: again, here is a link to the HiJOY rubric.

Still wondering what this contest is all about? Check out these informational slides from JEA.

If you are not yet a senior, you can start preparing. McKinley High School’s student newspaper adviser requires her students who are not seniors to create a portfolio using Google Slides each quarter to collect evidence.