Panther editor is S.C. Collegiate Journalist of Year
Apr 17, 2016
South Carolina Press Association Executive Director Bill Rogers, left, presents Claflin University senior Andres Waters with a plaque for being named South Carolina Collegiate Journalist of Year. (Special to The Panther)
Claflin University senior Andres Waters is living the deadline life.
He is editor of The Panther, the Claflin student newspaper; sports writer for The Times and Democrat, and co-producer of a web series exploring issues of college life.
On April 8, he became South Carolina Collegiate Journalist of the Year for colleges and universities with under 5,000 enrollment. The award was presented at the University of South Carolina-Aiken during the annual meeting of the S.C. Press Association Collegiate Division, which promotes journalism excellence among student publications at institutions of higher learning.
The award marks the second consecutive year in which a Claflin student and editor of The Panther earned the top collegiate journalism honor.
Princess Williams, now a T&D staff writer, was Journalist of the Year in 2015.
During his year as editor, Waters has expanded the scope of the Panther website (claflin.edu/the-panther). Providing more content, particularly photographs, has been a priority.
Waters handles all administrative functions of the website, including editing and posting. And he covers stories himself, from the basic assignments such as news conferences to a homecoming appearance by entertainer Wale.
Waters uses his role as Panther editor to build interest in journalism beyond the boundaries of the student newspaper, with his job as sports writer for The T&D serving as an example for those looking to expand their horizons.
Waters is a key player in The T&D sports report. Specializing in high school sports, the Alaska native and Alabama resident knows the local and state prep landscape. His regular work includes previews, game coverage (including photos) and special projects such as the series “Seniors at the top of their game.”
Selected as The T&D’s top sports series of 2015, “Seniors at the top of their game” looked at a senior from each local high school as the athlete was ending his/her career in the spring. Waters selected the “honorees,” looking beyond the most-acclaimed athletes and to those with achievements and stories that may not have made headlines.
Waters also co-produces the web series “Straight Up!” The show features a cast talking in a roundtable format about topics affecting students locally and at any college or university.
Topics include dating in college, roommate etiquette and freshman advice. The show also features skits and “word on the street” interviews.