Features & Articles

Pittwire Celebrates an Award-winning Year

A water-friendly wheelchair. A team studying a solar eclipse for NASA. A wrestling dental student.

The stories of these University of Pittsburgh innovations, endeavors and personalities are among the more than 200 articles published by Pittwire since its June 5, 2017, debut. In its first year, Pittwire brought national and international exposure to the work done at Pitt, with stories that inspired and resonated with the public. Pittwire itself garnered several journalism awards and honors in May. And more than 50,000 Pitt faculty, students, staff, alumni and friends as well as members of the media subscribe to the free email newsletter version of Pittwire.

Throughout Pittwire’s first year, staff from the Office of University Communications sought out stories that showcase Pitt’s innovation and research in fields as diverse as engineering, psychology, history, social work and teaching. Reporting on Pitt’s community collaborations led to stories about partnerships in its own neighborhood and region and as far away as Panama, ColombiaChina, France and the United Kingdom. And the projects, goals, scholarship and creativity of Pitt students provided a wealth of subject matter throughout the year.

Pittwire also has published nearly 200 accolades, which report the accomplishments of University students, faculty, alumni and staff. These briefs celebrating the awards, honors and other successes of members of the Pitt community are the most visited section on the Pittwire site and can be submitted using this form.

Pittwire brings home awards

Articles, photography and a multimedia package also caught the attention of Pittwire’s peers in the media, which acknowledged the publication with several honors and awards in May.

The Pittsburgh Black Media Federation 2018 Robert L. Vann Media Awards named five Pittwire entries as finalists, with two of those winning the top awards in their categories: “‘Black Nativity’ Showcases Gospel Music, Family and Community Connections” by Anthony M. Moore in the Online Media — News Feature category and a portrait of Pitt alumna Vivian Davidson Hewitt in the Online Photography — Feature Photo category. The three additional finalists were Ervin Dyer’s “Archival Collections Document the Black Arts Movement in 20th-century Pittsburgh,” Aimee Obidzinski’s photographic portrait of “Black Nativity” leader Oronde S. Sharif and Kevin Zwick’s “Alumna Earns CEO of the Year Honors.”

The Press Club of Western Pennsylvania also named three Pittwire entries as finalists in its 2018 Golden Quill Awards: Micaela Fox Corn’s “Geologists Uncover Lasting Effects of Historical Industries in Southwestern Pennsylvania,” Sharon S. Blake’s “Historian’s Work Celebrates Unsung Heroes” and the Pittwire staff’s “Shadow Bandits Ready for Eclipse Day.”

Moving forward, the Pittwire staff plans to continue its focus on telling the most interesting and important stories from Pitt, giving its readers insight into the discoveries, ambitions and life-changing accomplishments of the people of the University of Pittsburgh.

Exploring Pittwire

The Pittwire site includes several features that can help you find the stories most interesting and relevant to you:

  • Categories of Innovation & Research, Campus, Students, Alumni, Giving, Faculty & Teaching, Staff and Diversity & Community are displayed across the top of the website and with one click, you can browse all the stories filed under each category.
  • Tags at the end of each story can be clicked to lead you to other stories under that same subject or unit at Pitt, allowing you to find related articles based on topic, academic departments, University offices and even the six Plan for Pitt strategic goals.
  • The archives allow you to search by date for anything that has been published on Pittwire.

Have a Pittwire story idea?

Pittwire publishes stories about Pitt and its people that will interest the public at large. If a story would intrigue a reader halfway around the world as well as one right here at Pitt, we want to hear about it.

Contact Managing Editor Jolie Williamson at jolie [at] pitt.edu or Senior Editor Robyn K. Coggins at roj11 [at] pitt.edu. For more information about the staff at Pittwire or other media relations needs, visit our team’s website.

Information for journalists

Pittwire stories are meant to be material for the media outside of Pitt. The stories can be linked to or reposted or republished in their entirety. Journalists looking to create their own version of the story may use any quotes, information, photos, videos and graphics as elements.

If more information, an interview with the story subjects or different format or resolution of images is needed, members of the media should contact the Pittwire staff member listed at the bottom of the story send an email to pittwire [at] pitt.edu. Subscribe to the free email newsletter to get the latest stories as they are posted to the site.