Judging – Student Interviews


Volunteer judges invited by The Miami Herald from an independent panel for each category to read the entry forms and conduct interviews. Judges will select a Silver Knight winner and three Honorable Mentions in each category. Judges in one category do not consult judges in another category before reaching decisions. The school’s Silver Knight Coordinator is notified of the site and specific day in March for Silver Knight interviews. Because of the difficulty in arranging schedules for all the judges, interviews will be conducted on that one-day only.

All nominees must agree to appear for the interview. Failure to do so will result in disqualification. Students are advised to dress in business attire. The 10-15 minute interview gives selected nominees a chance to elaborate on ideas and activities presented in the Entry Form Packet. It also gives the judges a glimpse of a nominee’s poise, sincerity and enthusiasm. The Miami Herald will disqualify a school’s nominee if that student fails to appear for a scheduled interview.

There are no requirements that a Silver Knight nominee take specific courses to be qualified in a given category. However, judges require -in evaluating the Academic Checklist - that some of a nominee's classroom interests are directly related to that category.

Interviews usually begin at about 8 a.m., and for some categories, extend until 6:00 p.m. Judges will evaluate each nominee based on the following criteria: (Max. of 100 points)

1. Service (up to 50 pts)- use of skills and talents for the betterment of our South Florida community. Creativity in problem solving and the quality consistency and measurable impact of service.

2. Achievement (up to 40 pts)- based on grade point average. Including a listing of honors and awards related to this category is encouraged.

3. Leadership/Character/Interview (up to 10 pts)- significant roles in school and community activities, use of good judgment, perseverance in overcoming challenges, and realization of goals. Poise, maturity, sincerity, enthusiasm and ability to communicate ideas.

Read more About the Silver Knight Awards stories from the Miami Herald

  • 2013-2014 Coordinator Guidebook

    Welcome to Miami Herald Silver Knight Awards program. We look forward to your school's participation in this exciting program that recognizes outstanding high school seniors. To facilitate this, we have prepared simple guidelines that explain the program and the steps involved in its establishment and implementation.

  • What is a Silver Knight?

    The Miami Herald Silver Knight Awards is one of the nation’s most highly regarded student awards programs. The purpose of this Awards program is to recognize outstanding students who have not only maintained good grades but have also unselfishly applied their special knowledge and talents to contribute significant service to their schools and communities. The Silver Knight Awards program was instituted at The Miami Herald in 1959 by John S. Knight, past publisher of The Miami Herald, founder and editor emeritus of Knight-Ridder Newspapers and 1968 Pulitzer Prize winner.

  • Qualifications & Nomination Process

    The Silver Knight Awards program is open to 12th-grade students in public, private and parochial schools in Miami-Dade and Broward counties with a minimum 3.2 unweighted GPA. Class rank and /or percentile are no longer required. Only students with this academic requirement in addition to strong records of service to their school and community should be nominated. Students in vocational and adult centers must be nominated by the public high school to which they would be assigned by residence. Schools may nominate one student per category. Nominating students is the responsibility of each high school.

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