For the sixth year in a row, The Stanner, the newspaper of Archbishop Molloy H.S., Briarwood, won the General Excellence category at this year’s Tablet High School Press Awards.
The Stanner was one of six school newspapers in the diocese that took part in the competition. All participating schools earned at least one award.
“I think this is a great event to go to because it recognizes everyone’s collaborative efforts and talents at different levels,” said John Fenner, The Stanner’s editor-in-chief. “It’s just a great re-enforcement to know that we are doing a good job informing our fellow students and that our work is good within the school and within journalism.”
Students and moderators who attended the ceremony at the Diocesan Chancery, Park Slope, had a chance to network, read each other’s papers and compare notes. The school newspapers all take a different approach to their mission. Some focus on hard news, while others rely more heavily on features and entertainment. However, all schools have student staffs, which include reporters, photographers, editors and graphic designers.
“It is great to see how they run their editorial staff, put together the paper, what programs they use, how they deal with photography,” Fenner said. “We all have things we give and take from one another.”
Every year, The Tablet invites all Catholic high school newspapers in the diocese to participate in a friendly contest. The editorial staff reads all submissions and chooses winners based on the quality of the work and how it serves the student body.
“Our staff worked so hard this year and it really meant a lot to win all these awards,” said Alicia Badea, editor-in-chief for the Mariel, the newspaper of The Mary Louis Academy, Jamaica Estates. She added that their 10 awards encourages her staff, which is mostly freshmen and sophomores.
Stephanie Solorzano, the new newspaper moderator at St. Joseph H.S., Downtown Brooklyn, said the school is very proud of its student journalists.
“The recognition is great for the girls; it is a way to show how hard they work,” she said. “We are really proud of the (newspaper’s column) ‘Locking Horns’ because the students don’t all have the same viewpoints, so is a way for them to argue both sides.”
Before the awards presentation, the student journalists heard from professional journalist Michael Rizzo, who was the keynote speaker at the ceremony.
Rizzo, a former Tablet intern, is the director of the journalism program at St. John’s University and former general manager/executive director for news and sports at ABC News Radio. He has been a news writer, producer and manager at ABC-TV News, managing editor at FiOS1 News and News12, and a senior producer at the online magazine The Daily.
During his presentation, Rizzo reminded the students that journalism is the only craft protected by the Constitution and that carries great responsibility. He said that practicing journalism means being on the front lines of history, interviewing newsmakers, asking the questions people want the answers to and telling the stories people need to know about.
“Every day brings something new,” Rizzo said. “Journalism carries that mix of fun, exciting stuff and somber stuff – and you have to practice how to cover both, and how to approach both, to do a good job at both.”
Rizzo acknowledged the influence of social media and different ways people consume information, while reminding students that the news websites that would thrive are the ones that have safeguards in place to ensure their information is correct and trustworthy.
“The basics are the same: fast-paced, unbiased reporting,” Rizzo said.
Students said that the presentation reminded them that print media is still relevant in today’s society and that journalism can adapt to these changing times while conveying facts in an ethical way.
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And the Winners Are:
Best Front Page
1. Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
2. The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
3. The Parmentier, Saint Joseph High School
Best News Story
1. “After Brief Reprieve, International Day Is Cancelled” by Sargam Mehra, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
2. “Off the Shelves for Good: Community Barnes and Noble Closes Its Doors” by Alicia Badea, Sultan Kaur, Yuka Lin and Shelby Lincoln, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
3. “Do iPads Give Frosh Special Privileges?” by Philip Barsamian and Sophia Savvides, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
HM: “Rumbling Stomachs Flavorsome Food” by Alicia Badea, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
Best Feature Story
1. “The Stanner Celebrates 100 Years of Service” by John Fenner, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
2. “Future Service Dog Spends Time at AM” by Phillip Barsamian, Sophia Savvides and Tori Pateroulakis, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
3. “Bopping to the Old-School Beat” by Marleen Moise and Lindsay Papalardo, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
Best Op-Ed Column
1. “The ‘Post-Racial Age’ Isn’t Here Yet” by Kristen Allen, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
2. “More Than a Number, More Than a Grade” by Alicia Badea, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
Best Editorial Cartoon
“Oh, the Irony…” by Olivia Calamia, Skyline, Saint Saviour High School
1. The Roger Payne Memorial Award for Best Column: “Locking Horns,” The Parmentier, Saint Joseph H.S.
2. “Pay It Forward: TMLA’s Service Homeroom Column,” Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
3. “Reviews” by Brian McCormack, The Current, Cathedral Preparatory School and Seminary
Best Sports Story
1. “Savourite Spotlight: Swimmer Briana Vega Steps Up to the Block at A-Championships” by Olivia Calamia, Skyline, St. Saviour High School
2. “Lovelace Back at No. 1 in Nation in TJ” by Jeffrey Twumasi, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
3. “Relentless Tennis Titleholders” by Sabrina Ghiozzi, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
HM: “Lady Royals Goal: Win One Game at a Time’ by Gabriella Felipe, The Royal Times, Christ the King High School
Best Personality Profile
1. “Alumnae Profiles” by Lordy Belance and Adanna Carter, The Parmentier, Saint Joseph High School
1. “Harry Loves French Fries” by Shoma Nath, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
2. “Competition Time!” by Caitlin Hillebrand, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
Best Multi-Photo Display
1. “Food, Festivities and Fun at Cultural Harmony” by Kayle Brutman-Faria, Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
2. “Sleeping Stanners” by Shoma Nath, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
3. “Halloween Dance” by Kayla Rivera and Sebastien Augustin, The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
1. The Stanner, Archbishop Molloy High School
2. Mariel, The Mary Louis Academy
3. The Parmentier, Saint Joseph High School