Elon senior places third in national reporting competition

Senior journalism major Michael Bodley's story on Montana's medical marijuana debate earned Hearst award recognition.

Michael Bodley '16

Senior journalism major Michael Bodley finished third in the 2015-16 Hearst Journalism Awards Enterprise Reporting competition.

His story, “Eleven years after being approved, Montana’s medical marijuana industry faces an existential threat,” details the state’s increasing limitations on medical marijuana, while other states continue to ease restrictions.

Bodley wrote the story while participating in the 2015 Carnegie-Knight News21 Initiative, a prestigious 10-week investigative reporting experience based in the Cronkite School at Arizona State University. Bodley joined a team of 27 Fellows to examine the legalization of marijuana.

He wrote two single byline stories and co-wrote three others for “America’s Weed Rush.” Bodley’s content focused primarily on the business aspects of marijuana legalization, tackling the subject with a hard look at its influence on banking and the workforce. In addition to a week in Montana, his coverage also included a stint in Las Vegas, detailing the state’s slow rollout of its medical marijuana program.

Bodley, the former editor- in-chief of The Pendulum, has also interned at The Baltimore Sun and will serve as a business intern at The Boston Globe this summer.

There were 114 enterprise reporting entries received in this year’s Hearst competition submitted from 64 schools. Bodley finished in the top three with entries from Ohio University and Northwestern University. He will receive a $1,500 scholarship as part of his finish.

The Hearst Foundation’s Journalism Awards Program, known as the Pulitzer Prizes of collegiate journalism, gives journalism majors an opportunity to compete for personal scholarships, school grants and stipends by writing stories on current events.