2015 Sentinel Award Finalists Announced, Featuring Topics of Campus Sexual Assault, PTSD, Autism, Climate Change and More

Aug 26, 2015, 15:00 ET from USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center/Hollywood, Health & Society

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Twelve finalists have been chosen from a record number of almost 90 entries for the 2015 Sentinel Awards, showcasing a diverse range of topics including campus sexual assault, post-traumatic stress disorder, autism and climate change.

Now in its 16th year, the Sentinel Awards are presented in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) by Hollywood, Health & Society (HH&S), a program of The Norman Lear Center at the University of Southern California's Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. 

The awards recognize exemplary television storylines that inform, educate and motivate viewers to make choices for healthier and safer lives. All eligible submissions are reviewed for accuracy by experts at the CDC and partner organizations, and for entertainment value and potential benefit to the viewing audience by entertainment, academic and public health professionals. This year, storylines will be recognized in the following categories: Drama, Comedy, Documentary, Serial Drama, Climate Change, Spanish Language and Children's Programming.

"Every year the quality and number of entries increases," said Kate Langrall Folb, director of HH&S.  "Entertainment television can be a powerful resource for health information, and compelling storylines a catalyst for millions of viewers worldwide."

The finalists will be recognized during a ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 24 at the Taglyan Complex in Hollywood.

"We're delighted to shine a spotlight on television writers and producers who both entertain viewers and at the same time provide them with accurate information," said Martin Kaplan, HH&S's principal investigator and the Norman Lear professor of entertainment, media and society at USC Annenberg. "Our hope is that the storylines we honor with this award will spur other TV writers to recognize and use responsibly the awesome power they wield."

The 2015 Sentinel Awards finalists:

  • Jane the VirginChapter Thirteen (The CW)
    Topic: Fetal abnormalities
  • Madam SecretaryFace the Nation (CBS)
    Topic: PTSD
  • ViceOur Rising Oceans (HBO)
    Topic: Climate change
  • Switched at BirthAt the First Clear Word; Black and Gray (ABC Family)
    Topic: Campus sexual assault
  • Mass Extinction: Life at the Brink (Smithsonian Channel)
    Topic: Climate change
  • The SimpsonsOpposites A-Frack (FOX)
    Topic: Fracking
  • Doc McStuffinsOooey Gablooey Springs a Leak (Disney Junior)
    Topic: Wounds
  • The Good WifeRed Zone (CBS)
    Topic: Campus sexual assault
  • East Los HighBeauty Queens Don't Wear Trash (Hulu)
    Topic: Domestic violence
  • Sleepless in America (National Geographic Channel)
    Topic: Sleep-loss epidemic
  • FrontlineBeing Mortal (PBS)
    Topic: Death and dying
  • Vive La Salud con la Dra. Azaret (CNN En Espanol)
    Topic: Autism

Hollywood, Health & Society provides entertainment industry professionals with accurate and timely information for storylines dealing with health and climate change through consultations and briefings with experts. Based at The Norman Lear Center, HH&S is a one-stop shop for writers, producers and others in search of credible information on public health and climate change topics. Since its inception, HH&S has been funded by the CDC, and other funders have included the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The California Endowment and The SCAN Foundation, among others. For more information about resources for writers, go to www.usc.edu/hhs.

The Norman Lear Center is a multidisciplinary research and public policy center studying and shaping the impact of entertainment and media on society. From its base in the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, the Lear Center builds bridges between faculty who study aspects of entertainment, media and culture. Beyond campus, it bridges the gap between entertainment industry and academia, and between them and the public. For more information, visit www.learcenter.org.

Located in Los Angeles at the University of Southern California, the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism is among the nation's leading institutions devoted to the study of journalism and communication, and their impact on politics, culture and society. With an enrollment of more than 2,000 graduate and under-graduate students (as of Fall 2011), USC Annenberg offers bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in journalism, communication, public diplomacy and public relations. For more information, visit www.annenberg.usc.edu.


SOURCE USC Annenberg Norman Lear Center/Hollywood, Health & Society