Monash journalism alumni, students win seven Quill Awards

Monash journalism alumni, students win seven Quill Awards

The Quill award winners for 2017.

Monash students and graduates showcased their journalism excellence at the 2017 Quill Awards at Crown on Friday night, winning seven categories.

Master of Journalism student Carol Saffer won the Melbourne Press Club Student Journalist of the Year for her superb business coverage at The Age newspaper.

Carol Saffer won the Melbourne Press Club Student Journalist of the Year.

Carol said she thought her chances of winning the award were slim in a highly competitive field.

“Fellow finalist Angus Smith, a great journo friend and a Monash student – and the other three finalists were RMIT, Melbourne and Deakin, so, amazing competitors (in the Student Journalist of the Year award),” Carol said.

“I’m so thrilled (with this award). I couldn’t have done it without Monash, I couldn’t have done it without being able to do that professional internship with Mat Dunckley at The Age.”

Monash alumna and News Corp journalist Suzan Delibasic won the Suburban Journalism Quill for her report on the Lee family deportation fight, ahead of Jack Paynter, also a Monash graduate.

“I’m so honoured to win the Quill award. It just shows the power of local journalism and how it gives a voice to the community,” Suzan said.

“I can’t thank Monash enough for their support, to my mentors Julie Tullberg, Bill Birnbauer and everyone else in journalism.”

Suburban journalism Quill winner Suzan Delibasic.

Jack was highly commended for his Greater Dandenong Leader report, Leave our park alone.

Other Monash alumni winners include:

Monash Media, Film and Journalism’s Head of School Associate Professor Mia Lindgren said she was “very proud of our students and Monash alumni for all their awards”.

“So many Quills Awards demonstrate the incredible calibre of our students and the opportunities they have to learn practical journalism skills during their studies,” Associate Professor Lindgren said.

“It’s wonderful to share the celebrations.”

Monash Head of Journalism Associate Professor Fay Anderson said the legacy of Associate Professor Phil Chubb, who died from cancer in November, was reflected in the success of award-winning students and graduates.

“I think Phil has always promoted an incredible depth and understanding, an ethical fairness about journalism,” Associate Professor Anderson said, adding that the Quills success was “a beautiful memorial for him”.

“We are very proud of our students and they’ve done an amazing job. It’s a credit to them and also to our inspiring teachers.”

The Age’s Ebony Bowden, who heads to New York for exciting, journalistic opportunities, has enjoyed success after four years in newsrooms and says the Monash journalism program has been instrumental in developing her skills as a young reporter.

News Corp political editor and Monash graduate Annika Smethurst was highly commended for Flat a Ley buy on trip in the News Report in Writing category.

Annika won a Walkley award for revealing that former Health Minister Susan Ley had charged taxpayers almost $40,000 for several trips to Queensland.

The winners' list:


Carol Saffer, Monash University (winner)
Angus Smith (finalist)

Suzan Delibasic, Monash Leader, Lee family deportation fight (winner)
Jack Paynter, Greater Dandenong Leader, Leave our park alone (high commendation)

INNOVATION IN JOURNALISM The ABC Trace Team, ABC, Trace (digital producer and alumnus Jeremy Story Carter with reporter Rachael Brown)

The ABC Trace Team, ABC, Trace (digital producer and alumnus
Jeremy Story Carter with reporter Rachael Brown)

Ebony Bowden, The Age, Fury Roads: Melbourne's road rage epidemic


Nick McKenzie, James Massola (Monash alumnus), Richard Baker & Fergus Hunter, Fairfax Media, Chinese influence and Dastyari's fall and … Adele Ferguson, Sarah Danckert & Klaus Toft, The Age & ABC Four Corners, The Crook, the Police and the Retirement Village

The Age Newsroom Team (including Monash journalism alumnus Craig Butt), The Age, Bourke Street tragedy.

NEWS REPORT IN WRITINGHigh commendation to Annika Smethurst (News Corp/Herald Sun), Flat a Ley buy on trip.

All winners seen here.