Photo provided by Tonya Lowentritt -- Channel honored for excellence -- Students at the Southeastern Channel, Southeastern Louisiana University’s educational cable channel on Charter 199, recently won five first-place Mark of Excellence awards in television given by the Society of Professional Journalists at the annual convention in Lake Charles. Honored, from left, were Rick Settoon, general manager of the Southeastern Channel; Kati Morse, of Ponchatoula; Paul Rivera, of Slidell; and John Reis. Winners not pictured are Nick Brilleaux, of Hammond; Scott Caro, of Mandeville; and Nicholas Authement, of Covington.

Southeastern Louisiana University students at the Southeastern Channel won five first-place 2014 Mark of Excellence Awards at the annual Society of Professional Journalists Region 12 conference in Lake Charles recently.

Southeastern Channel students were named first-place winners in five television categories and second-place finalists in two categories. The Mark of Excellence Awards honor the best of collegiate journalism from a calendar year. SPJ’s Region 12 comprises all universities in Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas and Tennessee.

Nicholas Brilleaux, of Hammond, and Scott Caro, of Mandeville, who both recently received their master’s degrees in history, won first place in television in-depth reporting for their documentary “McCrea 1971: Louisiana’s Forgotten Rock Festival” about the state’s disastrous attempt at a Woodstock-sized festival near McCrea, a community in upper Pointe Coupee Parish.

Student sports reporter Kati Morse, of Ponchatoula, won first place in television sports reporting for her feature on Southeastern football player Tyler Stoddard, who met his father, a former McNeese State football player, for the first time during the 2014 Lions’ football season.

The first-place winners will now move on to the national Mark of Excellence competition, with the winners recognized at the Excellence in Journalism 2015 convention Sept. 18-20 in Orlando, Florida.

Judged by professionals in other parts of the country, the Mark of Excellence Awards honor the best in student journalism. Judges were directed to choose only those entries they felt were outstanding work worthy of such an honor. If the judges determined that none of the entries rose to the level of excellence, no award was given.

The Southeastern Channel, broadcast on Charter 199 in Tangipahoa, St. Tammany and Livingston parishes and at, has won more than 200 national, international and regional awards in its 12 years of existence.