The Crusader student newspaper staff of Seward County Community College/Area Technical School received a Silver Medalist Award for overall newspaper and won 31 individual awards at the Kansas Associated Collegiate Press convention April 15-16 in Salina.
“This Crusader group placed in 19 of the 22 categories,” said Anita Reed, faculty adviser and journalism instructor. “That is quite an accomplishment and really shows the balanced talent and skills of these students.”
The awards included six first-place awards, eight second-place awards, seven third-place awards and 10 honorable mentions.
Crusader editor-in-chief Heidy Molina, sports editor Levi Adams, news editor Celestina Padilla, and staff writers Matthew Adkins, Sandy Alfaro, Tonya Loewen and Jose Medrano, along with Reed, represented SCCC/ATS at the state KACP convention.
Twenty colleges from across Kansas and 191 students and advisers registered for the convention that had a total of 1,773 entries submitted to this year’s contests.
Of those, 516 entered contest pieces in the two-year college newspaper category.
The convention started Sunday afternoon with workshops, an AP Style copy-editing contest, publication critiques and an awards ceremony.
Crusader sports editor Levi Adams placed first in the AP Style contest.
“I was surprised to win, Adams said, first because there were a lot of people in the contest, and I have never been in an AP Style contest before.” Adams also took second in series writing, and a third in sports column writing.
“Of the five winners in the AP Style copy-editing contest, three were from Seward,” Reed said. “It’s especially satisfying to me that our students did so well in the on-site contest.” Loewen placed third and Adkins won honorable mention.
On Monday morning, staff members attended workshops ranging from journalism job tips and writing tips to ideas for First Amendment food gatherings.
The convention ended with the final awards ceremony Monday, and the Crusader received its Silver Medalist Award during that ceremony. The keynote speaker was Larry Hatteberg of KAKE-TV, who spoke to students about interviewing ethics and the television industry. He discussed some of the pitfalls of social media and reminded journalists that they are “always 140 characters from getting fired.”
The Crusader staff collected the 31 awards over the two days of the convention.
Crusader staff writer Sandy Alfaro received first place in feature writing, second place in infographic design and an honorable mention in sports writing.
CrusaderNews.com online editor Raul Lemus received five awards. A first place was awarded to Lemus in feature photography. Lemus received two second places, one in headline writing and another in front page design. Two honorable mentions were awarded to Lemus in feature writing and editorial writing.
In addition to her third-place copy-editing award, Crusader staff writer Tonya Loewen received another third-place award for interior page design. Loewen also received a honorable mention for sports feature writing.
Editor-in-chief Heidy Molina received a first place in news photography and a second place in editorial writing. She also shared honors in a photo essay award with Alfredo Anaya, Connie Whiteley and Lizuly Monarrez.
“The staff this year was very talented and passionate about the stories they wrote, and the awards helped prove it,” Molina said.
Crusader staff writer Jose Medrano received two awards, an honorable mention in sports writing and a honorable mention in sports photography. Crusader staff writer Morgan Wills received three awards, first place in sports feature writing, second place in sports feature writing and third place in feature photography.
Since the annual contest has entries from February of 2011 through February of 2012, previous members of the Crusader also won awards. Anaya, one of last year's co-editors, was awarded a third place for infographic design, Chandler Brockett received a second place for sports column writing and Whiteley was a awarded a first place for series writing.
Jose Rodriquez placed second in single ad design, and Miguel Campano received an honorable mention in sports photography.
Octavio Rodriguez received three awards, third place in cartoons, third place in review writing and a honorable mention in illustration.
In addition to the state awards, the Crusader staff also won a national award this month. The American Scholastic Press Association presented the Crusader with a first-place award.