First Prize

2021 Winner of the EGF Accelerator’s Eddie Prize

Eric Hoover, The Chronicle of Higher Education

What the System Requires

About the Winner

Eric Hoover, a senior writer for The Chronicle of Higher Education, brought to light some lesser known but highly consequential flaws of the admissions and financial-aid systems, and illuminated the human toll such flaws take on students, especially those who are already vulnerable.

Comments from the Judges:

“The education system is rife with problems that journalists report on every day. Eric Hoover makes us care about policy through his narrative writing skills, which is a unique combination to achieve. He clearly learned a lot about his subjects, but his storytelling craft really drove home with riveting urgency the problems with getting financial aid, especially by those who need it the most.”

“These stories are lyrically told and take readers deep into the lives of students navigating the complex systems and bureaucracies that add barrier after barrier to college paths. But not only that, Eric’s coverage broadens and deepens our understanding of what those barriers even are by spotlighting rarely examined — and also central — challenges. “