The Pioneer places in “Best of Show” for Collegiate Press awards
Monday, Mar 5, 2012
Top, from left: Emily Lin-Jones '15, Libby Arnosti '13, Rachel Alexander '13, Pamela London '14, Talia Rudee '14 and Sean McNulty '14. Bottom, from left: Cari Cortez '13, Molly Johanson '14, Shelly Le '14, Sara Rasmussen '12, Patricia Vanderbilt '12, Ted Hendershot '12 and Hannah Bauer '13.
Whitman College’s weekly student-run newspaper, The Pioneer, has been honored as “Best of Show” in its category of schools at the 28th Annual Associated Collegiate Press (ACP) National Journalism Convention, held in Seattle March 1-4.
The Pioneer was recognized in two categories this year, ranking No. 2 for its website and No. 3 in print. This is the third time in four years that the Pioneer website has been recognized and its first award for a print edition.
“Winning the awards, especially our first print award, is an affirmation of how hard everyone has worked this year,” said Patricia Vanderbilt ’12, editor-in-chief. “As a senior, I’ve seen The Pio undergo an incredible transformation in the past four years. The quality of the paper has grown every semester due to the sheer willpower of those who work for it.”
The website was ranked among other schools with student bodies under 10,000 and the print edition ranked in its category of four-year weekly student newspapers. More than 100 colleges and universities from the U.S. and Canada entered the ACP Best of Show contest.
“Our national award is a credit to the talent and dedication of the entire Pioneer staff, who consistently demonstrate a commitment to excellence in reportage, art and design,” said Ted Hendershot ’12, production manager. “We intend to keep improving so that we can return to ACP next semester and claim the Best in Show trophy.”
Thirteen students attended the conference and were on hand to receive the honors. In addition to Vanderbilt and Hendershot, in attendance were: Sara Rasmussen ’12, web editor; Rachel Alexander ’13, senior reporter; Libby Arnosti ’13, sports editor; Shelly Le ’14, co-news editor; Cari Cortez ’13, humor editor; Hannah Bauer ’13, advertising manager; Sean McNulty ’14, production associate; and staff reporters Molly Johanson ’14, Emily Lin-Jones ’15, Pamela London ’14 and Talia Rudee ’14.
Students spent three days participating in workshops and critiques and attending keynote speeches, with the convention focusing particularly on social media.
“The staff is excited to start implementing some changes to the Pioneer website based on what they learned,” Vanderbilt said.
The website has a strong track record at ACP in recent years, garnering first place Best of Show awards in 2009 and 2011. Its current design was created by alumna Rebecca Fish ’11. This year, The Pioneer also debuted a new magazine, The Circuit, which was made possible by generous, ongoing support from Whitman Trustee Megan Salzman Medica ’81 and her husband, John Medica.
“Whitman is unique out of all the schools that attend ACP in that we have no academic journalism or communications department to train us, and no professor telling us what to do,” Vanderbilt said. “We set out own standard of excellence, and these awards show that we can rise to the occasion.”
See the complete list of winners here.
—Gillian Frew '11