Bailey Hurley, a sophomore broadcasting major in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s College of Journalism and Mass Communications, placed third in the Hearst Journalism Awards television competition.
She will advance to the championship in San Francisco in June.
Hurley, of Fargo, North Dakota, placed in the Television II/News competition with her package that exposed the illegality of the smartphone app KeyMe and its potential risks.
The free app allows the user to take a picture of a key, and the company then sends the user a duplicate in about five days for $5. Hurley tested the app with her coworker’s key and was able to enter her coworker’s house. She brought her findings to the police, who were unaware of the app’s existence.
The package aired on Star City News, the journalism college’s student-produced public access news show that airs once a week.
Hurley has been an intern reporter for the Valley News Live in Fargo since her senior year of high school. She will return to the internship this summer.
She submitted a second piece to the Hearst competition that featured a sex offender who wanted to speak out about his story. That piece aired on Valley News Live last summer.
The 2015-16 Hearst Journalism Awards Program is held in 108 member colleges and universities of the Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication with accredited undergraduate journalism programs. The awards program consists of five writing, two photojournalism, one radio, two television and four multimedia competitions. The program awards up to $500,000 in scholarships, matching grants and stipends annually.