The Xavier Herald earns top collegiate award
from Louisiana Press Association
Student newspaper earns La. Press Association awards: The Xavier Herald adviser Melinda L. Shelton, left, and 2013-14 graphics design editor Latasha Smith display awards the student newspaper received in the Louisiana Press Association’s Better Student Newspaper Competition. Shelton holds certificates for second place in graphic design and feature photography, and Smith displays plaques for first place in general excellence, the LPA’s highest award, and staff generated color advertisement. Photo by Veronica Farve, Xavier University.
NEW ORLEANS—Students who worked on the 2013 spring and fall editions of The Xavier Herald at Xavier University of Louisiana received the top award presented by the Louisiana Press Association in its annual Better Student Newspaper Competition: First Place in General Excellence. The Herald also took first place in “staff generated color advertisement” and two second place awards for graphic design and feature photography.
The awards were presented June 21, 2014, at the LPA’s joint conference with the Mississippi Press Association held in Biloxi, Miss. The Better Student Newspaper Competition entries were judged by mainstream media professionals from outside Louisiana and Mississippi. The competition includes university publications from across Louisiana.
Student publications were required to submit two full editions—one from the spring and one from the fall 2013—and judges based their decision on content, design and advertising. “Excellent reporting of subjects relevant to your target audience,” one judge commented about The Herald’s entries. “Professional quality design. Excellent all around.”
Herald staffs entered the April 11, 2013, and Nov. 19, 2013, editions. The April edition included coverage of the university administration’s controversial decision to cancel performances by two New Orleans bounce artists days before the annual students’ spring festival. The November edition featured an in depth examination of college students’ usage of “stimulants in a can,” such as energy drinks, and overuse of other caffeine-loaded products; misuse of prescription drugs; and detrimental “addiction” to social media.
Cassie Smith, editor-in-chief in the spring 2013, graduated in May 2013 with a BA in mass communication, print concentration. She is now an editorial assistant at the Austin American-Statesman newspaper in Austin, Texas. Anthony Lotten served as editor-in-chief in fall 2013 and is a senior English major.
The Southeastern Louisiana University Lion’s Roar placed second and Loyola University Maroon placed third in general excellence.
The Herald’s other first place award was for a staff generated color ad that design editor Kenneth Norwood produced to solicit contributions for New Voices, which features students’ literary and artistic submissions. Norwood graduated in May 2013 with a BA in mass communication, print concentration.
Fall 2013 design editor Latasha Smith was awarded second place in “most effective use of graphic design on a single page.” The winning entry was one page of a two-page Arts and Entertainment spread on the film, “12 Years a Slave.” Smith’s elaborate design featured a review by staff writer Bianca Moore and a coordinated layout with images from the film and corresponding passages from Solomon Northup’s memoir, “Twelve Years a Slave.”
“A lot of information, but well-thought out and strong design. The main art as focal point brings you into the entire graphic,” one judge wrote about Smith’s entry. Smith graduated in May 2014 with a BA in mass communication, public relations concentration.
Managing editor and photographer Eric Craig earned second place in feature photography with his nighttime photo of student Jade Dedeaux as she texts on her phone while walking across campus. The photo accompanied a feature on campus safety. Craig is a junior political science major with a mass communication minor.