East Central College English and journalism instructor Leigh Kolb has received the Interscholastic Press Association’s (MIPA) Contributing Medium Award.

“Leigh Kolb has gone out of her way to assist MIPA and SchoolJournalism.org this school year,” according to MIPA vice-president Michelle Turner, who nominated Kolb.

“In the fall, when I approached her about MIPA’s desire to hold regional journalism workshops and summits, she was more than on board,” Turner said. “She offered space, food and assistance with speakers.”

The inaugural journalism summit at East Central College was held in September 2016. It brought experts from the field to speak with students from ECC and Washington High School.

“My passions include not only talking about the importance of news and media literacy — and how becoming critical thinkers can transform our students’ lives — but also showing students that if they love examining the world around them and telling stories that matter, there are academic and career options they can and should pursue in the field of journalism and mass communications,” Kolb said.

One outlet for her passions, she said, has been SchoolJournalism.org, the go-to education site for students and teachers that provides hundreds of lesson plans and resources related to journalism, news literacy and civic education.

“(Leigh) been an amazing friend of MIPA and SchoolJournalism.org,” Turner said. “Her generosity, kindness and willingness to network with us has greatly impressed me. She is someone who is more than deserving of this honor.”