By Joe Sullivan
The Boston Globe

The applicants for the 2015 APSE Scholarships crisscrossed the nation, as students from Alaska to Florida and from New Hampshire to San Diego applied. It was a highly competitive group of 72 that vied for four scholarships, and they made the committee’s work difficult.

Not surprisingly, the winners, all will be seniors this year, are outstanding student journalists who all have a future in our business. The winners are:

Chris Heady

■ Chris Heady of Nebraska, who is a repeat winner of the Jack Berninger Scholarship.

Kristen Gowdy

■ Kristen Gowdy of Ithaca, the winner of the Roy Hewitt Scholarship.

Nora Princiotti
Nora Princiotti

■ Nora Princiotti of George Washington, who has been awarded the Tim Wheatley Memorial Scholarship.

Shehan Jeyarajah

■ Shehan Jeyarajah of Baylor, the final APSE Scholarship winner.

Heady’s standout piece in his application was a long-form profile of Nebraska’s new football, coach Mike Riley. “I really like big, narrative journalism,’’ he said. “I love Gary Smith and Wright Thompson. I’d love to have their jobs.’’ He may someday. He will be the editor of the Daily Nebraskan this year and can usually be identified on campus because of his beat-up Kansas City Royals cap. He spent his summer as an intern in the features section at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, where he had the opportunity to write about the Miss Arkansas pageant and country music star Scotty McCreery. Heady also wrote a first-person essay about the effect Pixar films have had on his generation, framed around the release of this summer’s animated film, “Inside Out.’’

Princiotti grew up in New Hampshire and attended Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass. Andover has many famous alumni, such as both George Bushes and Humphrey Bogart, but another really big one is Patriots coach Bill Belichick. “His girlfriend’s twin daughters were a grade above me,’’ said Nora. “When I was a junior he went to the pre-prom festivities and he had the exact same look on his face that he has at all his press conferences.’’ Nora has spent her summer as an intern at the Washington Times. “I can play with live ammo,’’ she said. “That’s what I’ve been doing and hoping for the best.’’ She’s been covering a lot of Washington Nationals game and got the chance to be the lead witer (and only Times reporter) at one game.

Gowdy lives in Santa Barbara, Calif., but makes her way to chilly, hilly Ithaca, N.Y., for college. A Red Sox fan since her father took her to Fenway Park in 2002 on meet the team night, she has a great love of baseball and wants to cover the sport. She even had a summer internship at the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2014. This summer she worked for the Colorado Spring Gazette and continued to cover baseball with the city’s Triple A team, but that wasn’t all. “I covered the Hill Climb of Pike’s Peak,’’ she said. “I also covered a lot of other sports I didn’t think I’d ever cover, like Pickle Ball.’’ Pickle Ball, she explained, is a racquet sport played with a Wiffle Ball on a playing field smaller than a tennis court but bigger than a ping-pong table.

Shehan Jeyarajah is already a professional journalist. He will be covering Baylor sports for the Dallas Morning News during his senior year, while also attending classes and serving as city chief (fall semester) and editor-in-chief (spring semester) for The Lariat, the school’s newspaper. This summer he worked as an intern at Sports Illustrated in New York. He particularly enjoys covering Baylor football coach Art Briles. ‘’He makes giving away nothing far more interesting than anyone else,’’ he said. “He’s got his West Texas thing and lots of quips and lines.’’

The scholarship committee consisted of Julie Jag of the Santa Cruz Sentinel, Jeff Kuehn of the Oakland Press, Scott Monserud of the Denver Post, Mike Szvetitz of the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Joe Schiefelbein of the Baton Rouge Advocate, Joe Sullivan of the Boston Globe, and Lisa Wilson of the Buffalo News.