Donegal student enjoys success at the National Student Media Awards

UCD student Billy Vaughan awarded for best written article covering EU affairs

Staff Reporter

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Staff Reporter

Donegal student enjoys success at the National Student Media Awards

Billy Vaughan from Letterkenny receiving his prize at the National Student Media Awards from Eileen Dunne.


A Donegal university student has been awarded with a top prize at the National Student Media Awards.

Billy Vaughan from Letterkenny, a student at UCD, was awarded the European Commission Award.

The award goes to the best written article covering EU affairs. He received the award for his piece on Peter Sutherland who is considered the father of Erasmus.

The Smedias, as they are known are organised by Oxygen.ie, Ireland’s original and longest running student website. They have successfully run the awards since 2000 and this year was no exception.

Kevin McGahern was MC for the evening as students were joined by high-profile media personnel, sponsors and celebrities among the 500 attendees.

Judges including Eileen Dunne, Steven Collins and Tim Ryan for the European Commission, The Irish Examiner’s Acting Editor Allan Prosser, The Editor of The Independent, Fionnan Sheahan and The Editor of the Irish Times, Mark Hennessey.

UCD came out on top overall, collecting a total of eight awards.

The University also took home awards for Science Education Writer, Sports Writer, Raidió trí Ghaeilge and Website of the Year, Editor of the Year and The College Tribune triumphed in Newspaper of the Year, edited by Jack Power.

UCC were the over-all runners up on the night, winning five awards. They succeeded in Magazine of the Year, Colour Writer of the Year, RSA Award for Journalism relating to Road Safety, Radio Production – News & Current Affairs and Journalist of the Year.

DIT and DCU also made their mark on the night winning four awards each. Hannah Kingston of DCU, who represented UCC last year, won Short Story for the second consecutive year.

Smaller colleges also did well, with IADT, BCFE, QUB, SCFE and WIT all winning in one category.

Limerick College of Further Education’s Nick McDonogh won both Photographer of the Year and Sports Photographer of the Year.

Some of the guest presenters included The Political Editor of the Irish Examiner, Daniel McConnell who has previously won a Smedia, Sunday Game’s Michael Lyster, RTÉ’s Aengus Mac Grianna and Red Rock’s Denis McCormack.

Ciara Mahon, manager of Oxygen.ie said “We are delighted to have had another successful year of the Smedias. We are so proud to provide a nationally recognised platform for media students to showcase their talent. It’s fantastic to see the event grow continuously year after year. The standard of work this year was absolutely incredible so congratulations to all the well-deserving nominees and winners!”