Chadron State College student-journalists claimed top honors at the annual Nebraska Collegiate Media Association’s Golden Leaf Awards on Saturday, April 21, at Northeast Community College in Norfolk.
The Eagle, CSC’s student newspaper, won best overall newspaper for the second consecutive year, and its companion website, csceagle.com, claimed the award for best overall digital media. The website, launched in December 2010, was runner-up in the competition last year.
Eagle staff members won 24 individual awards in 17 categories – four first places, nine seconds, two thirds and eight honorable mentions. The website won 11 individual awards in 13 categories – five firsts, three seconds, two thirds and one honorable mention.
Michael Kennedy, the CSC instructor who advises the group, said CSC has talented student-journalists who put in long hours and care about their work. He noted that the students were more balanced in the competition’s scoring system this year, gaining nearly as many points in the writing categories as the visual categories.
“That’s what makes me proudest – their ability to improve one area while maintaining a high level of performance in the other,” he said.
Editor T.J. Thomson of Golden, Colo., who won 16 individual awards, said the honors for the newspaper and website are a testament to the students’ teamwork.
“None of our individual awards would have been possible without the collaboration and efforts of our staff members as a team. The quality of our work is directly tied to our ability to work as a singular unit,” he said.
The NCMA is composed of 10 two- and four-year member institutions, eight of which competed in this year’s awards competition. The Eagle earned 34 points. The Doane Owl finished second with 24 and the Wayne Stater was third with 21.
CSC students who received one or more first-place awards are Chris Clark of Pueblo, Colo., Kinley Q. Nichols of Littleton, Colo., and Thomson. Others who brought home honors are Aaron Gonzalez of Alliance, Kristina Harter of Colorado Springs, Colo., Kevin Oleksy of Chadron and Ashley Swanson of Byron.
The competition’s entries were judged by professional journalists from Missouri, Colorado, Wyoming and South Dakota. The individual honors follow.
Advertisement Design: 2, Kristina Harter
Feature Photograph: 1, Kinley Q. Nichols; 2, Ashley Swanson; 3, T.J. Thomson; HM, Thomson, HM Thomson.
Layout and Design-Complete Newspaper: 1, Eagle Staff
News Photograph: 2, T.J. Thomson; HM, Kinley Q. Nichols
Single Inside-Page Design: 2, T.J. Thomson
Special Design Graphs or Graphics: 2, T.J. Thomson
Sports Photograph: 2, Kinley Q. Nichols; HM, Nichols; HM, Nichols
Two-Page Special Spread Design: HM, T.J. Thomson.
Hard News-Spot News: 1, T.J. Thomson; 2, Thomson; 2, Thomson.
Headline: HM, Aaron Gonzalez.
Investigative, In-Depth: 1, T.J. Thomson; 2, Chris Clark
Opinion: 3, Chris Clark.
Series Special Edition: 2, T.J. Thomson
Sports Story: 1, Chris Clark; HM, Clark.
Digital Media Categories
Community Collaboration: 1, Chris Clark; HM, T.J. Thomson.
Digital Breaking News: 1, T.J. Thomson.
Digital Media Public Service: 1, T.J. Thomson
Investigative Journalism: 1, T.J. Thomson; 2, Thomson
Multimedia Feature: 2, Kevin Oleksy; 3, Oleksy.
Promotion: 2, Kevin Oleksy; 3, Oleksy.
Use of Digital Technology: HM, Kevin Oleksy.
—CSC Information Services