Progress Editor Receives Honor
A student journalist at EKU has received a Kentucky Colonels commission for her efforts to raise awareness of issues related to on-campus credit card solicitation.
Jamie Vinson, a senior journalism major from Mt. Sterling and editor of the Eastern Progress, was nominated for the honor by state Rep. Susan Westrom because of two stories she authored for the Feb. 6 issue of the award-winning, student-produced weekly.
The University negotiated a new contract this semester with MBNA America Bank that severely restricts credit card solicitation. On-campus solicitation, which must be arranged with prior approval of the University, is now limited to any athletic event and no more than six days per calendar year in the Powell basement or outside on the Powell concourse.
No student names, addresses or telephone numbers are supplied through the University, and cards issued to students are limited to an initial $1,000 credit line. The agreement also stipulates that any giveaways must have prior approval of the University.
Similarly restrictive legislation passed in the recent Kentucky General Assembly special session. Westrom has personally invited Vinson to be present for any formal bill signing in Frankfort.
The restrictions are "a huge step in the right direction," Vinson said. "I think it's great that the University and the legislature are … working to protect our best interests."
Vinson is particularly pleased that the Progress was able to play a role.
"What we're doing does have an impact," she said.
Vinson, a 1999 graduate of Montgomery County High School, plans to graduate in May. After she gains experience as a general assignment reporter or copy editor/page designer, "my dream is to one day land an investigative reporting job at a major newspaper."
Kentucky Colonel commissions are presented for contributions to the community, state or nation, and for special achievements of all kinds. Other well-known Colonels include Ann-Margaret, Tiger Woods, Dwight Yoakam, Muhammad Ali and Whoopi Goldberg.