Three SUNY Oswego student productions continued to bolster the college’s national reputation by earning Broadcast Education Association awards.

Winning Awards of Excellence were:

  • Emmy Leavy, Ethan Magram and David Hite for “The SUNY Oswego Holiday Television Special” in the student film and video competition: studio (multi-camera or live-to-tape) category
  • Carl Neff, Chelsea Gualoano, Timothy Brenner and Matthew Roelands for WNYO’s “Matt and Carl in the Morning” in the studio audio competition: comedy or drama category
  • James Kattato for “Salar Faryar Profile” in the student sports competition: television sports story/feature short category 

The holiday special, the brainchild of communication studies faculty member Francisco Suarez, unfolded as a student-run production with around 50 students writing, filming and starring in a Saturday Night Live-style variety show that aired on WCNY-TV in Syracuse as well as online and in a special campus screening to a packed audience.

“The award really is a testament to the collaboration that we had,” said Leavy, the production’s lead director and a senior majoring in both cinema and screen studies and in broadcasting. 

She said Suarez made sure the students learned as much as possible by truly allowing them to do all of the functions of the production. “He’s really good at letting students learn, which is important,” Leavy said. She added that Suarez also brings an excitement and energy that inspires the students.

The variety of students who came together as cast and crew to develop so many segments and turn it into a cohesive whole -- as well as securing the ability to broadcast a condensed version on WCNY -- were both impressive feats, Leavy said.

Morning show success

Senior broadcasting majors Roelands and Neff started their show as a podcast before “Matt and Carl in the Morning” came to the student-run WNYO radio station -- where Neff is now general manager and Roelands business director -- about two years ago. When Reolands studied abroad in spring 2019, Gualoano and Brenner stepped in.

“They had the opportunity to get a lot done,” Roelands said, and the instant chemistry has carried forward. “Having more voices has helped. We produce a lot of good content.”

The program, which airs on WNYO 88.9 FM and online at from 9 to 11 a.m. on Mondays and Fridays, features the students discussing their own lives and trending stories, which have connected well with listeners, including topics that draw fans into discussions on social media, Neff added. 

Neff said these awards show students, whether at WNYO or in any project at SUNY Oswego, what is possible if they work hard and work together. He added that looking at the much larger and big-name colleges that WNYO is competitive with shows that SUNY Oswego students can produce content that is as good as anybody.

“This is the best kind of learning environment there is,” Leavy said. “There is nothing that compares to hands-on learning.”

“At the end of the day, we’re sitting in there and having fun, and then we can step back and say, ‘That’s a very professional production that we have,’” Gualoano said.

In all, the awards drew 1,750 entries from more than 300 colleges and universities for a range of broadcasting categories. The awards ceremony will take place April 20 in Las Vegas.

BEA is considered a premiere international academic media organization, driving insights, excellence in media production and career advancement for educators, students and professionals. There are currently more than 2,500 individual and institutional members worldwide. For more information, visit

WNYO show Matt and Carl in the morning recently earned a national broadcasting award

Winning show -- The co-hosts of "Matt and Carl in the Morning" -- from left Matthew Roelands, Carl Neff and Chelsea Gualoano -- work on what is now an award-winning program for student-run WNYO 88.9 FM. Winning in the the studio audio competition: comedy or drama category of the Broadcast Education Association awards, the show was one of three SUNY Oswego student productions to win national awards in the recent competition.