Announcing the Blue and Gold Awards

Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society for High School Journalists recognized six scholastic media staffs with the inaugural Blue and Gold Awards launched this year in conjunction with the organization’s 90th anniversary. These awards honor high school journalism programs that excelled in the International Writing, Photo and Multimedia Contest. Top publishing teams will also be recognized in the upcoming Yearbook Excellence Contest.

The Blue and Gold Awards are presented to top staffs based on individual student performance in the following categories: Comprehensive Writing, Comprehensive Visuals and Staff Excellence. The winning staffs are:

Westlake High School in Austin, Texas, received the Staff Excellence Award for overall excellence in its publication. It is the highest Blue and Gold Award a staff can receive.

Three schools received the Comprehensive Writing Award: Lakota East High School in Liberty Township, Ohio; Shalhevet High School in Los Angeles, California; and Westlake High School in Austin, Texas, for overall excellence in writing, including editorials, features and news. Health, science and agricultural writing was added as a category this year.

Four schools were presented the Comprehensive Visuals Award: Duncanville High School in Duncanville, Texas; McKinney High School in McKinney, Texas; Shawnee Mission East High School in Prairie Village, Kansas; and Westlake High School in Austin, Texas, were recognized for overall excellence in visuals, including graphic design, photography, infographics and photo illustrations.

With the founding of the Blue and Gold Awards, the Society continues supporting and recognizing schools for their journalistic endeavors, not just for individual achievements but for staffs as a whole.

2015 Quill and Scroll Scholarship Recipients Announced

After a competitive application process, six incoming college freshmen were awarded Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society scholarships for studies in journalism or communications.

The recipients of the George and Ophelia Gallup Memorial Scholarship are Ivana Giang, graduate from Lakota East HS, and Julia Poe, of Shawnee Mission East HS. Though hailing from Ohio and Kansas, respectively, both will attend the University of Southern California in the fall. The Gallup Memorial Scholarship is named in honor of George Gallup, Quill and Scroll’s founder and renowned pollster, and his wife.

Named in honor of a former Quill and Scroll executive director, the Richard P. Johns Scholarship is awarded to Marie Obsuna, graduate from Kadena HS in Okinawa, Japan. Obsuna will attend Arizona State University.

The Edward J. Nell Scholarship, also named in honor of a former director, has three recipients. Alexzandria Churchill, graduate of Notre Dame de Sion HS in Kansas, MO, who is attending the University of Missouri, Columbia; Karringtan Harris, graduate of East Mecklenburg HS in Charlotte, NC, attending Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, NC; and Jacob Prothro, graduate of Westlake HS in Austin, TX, attending Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX.

More than 60 applicants vied for the scholarships, which range from $1,000 to $500. Seniors planning to major in journalism or communications in college and who are members of the honor society or were awarded Gold Keys in Quill and Scroll’s Yearbook Excellence or Writing, Photo and Blogging contests are eligible to apply for the scholarships. The deadline for 2016 Quill and Scroll scholarships is May 10. More information is available at quillandscroll.org/scholarships.

The deadline for the Quill and Scroll Yearbook Excellence Contest is Nov. 1, and for the Writing, Photo Contest and Blogging Competition, Feb. 5. Each contest recognizes individual journalistic achievements of students. Middle and junior high school journalists may enter the Quill and Scroll Writing and Photo Contest for grades 5-9, which also has a Feb. 5 deadline.

Quill and Scroll members also have the opportunity to receive a $500 college scholarship from MyMozaic, where students can create portfolios of their work and link with colleges and other enrichment opportunities. For more information, visit www.mymozaic.com/quillandscroll.

And the winners are…

Winners of the 2015 Quill and Scroll International Writing and Photo Contest for high school students as well as middle/junior high school students and the Blogging Competition have been announced.

Plaques, certificates and Gold Keys are en route to Writing and Photo winners. Winning bloggers receive digital badges and evaluations that are delivered via email.

High school competition winners also are eligible as seniors to apply for Quill and Scroll scholarships to study journalism or communications in college. Scholarship applications must be postmarked no later than May 10.

Enter 2014 Writing, Photo and Blog contests: Slideshow and Multimedia divisions added

High school student-produced blogs, slideshows and multimedia productions are among the entries accepted in the 2014 Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society Writing and Photo Contest. New divisions – Photo Slideshows and Multimedia – Features – have been added to the types of journalism students can have judged.

Quill and Scroll also conducts a Writing and Photo Contest for Middle School and Junior High School students.

The Writing and Photo Contest and Blogging Competition are co-sponsored by the American Society of News Editors Youth Journalism Initiative and Viacom.

Entry fees for the Writing and Photo Contest are $2 per entry. The Blogging Competition entails an evaluation and has a $5 per entry fee.

Enter the Writing and Photo Contest and at the same time register for the 2014 News Media Evaluation to save money and receive the 2013 NME Gallup Award winners PowerPoint presentation CD. The full NME evaluation package is $65 and the ratings-only package is $50.

Entries should be postmarked no later than Feb. 5. See the contest entry form for more information.

End-of-the-year events

As the school year winds down, a host of events begin to crowd the already-packed schedules of high school journalism teachers and students.

Here’s a to-do list Quill and Scroll composed to help our members include organization activities amidst the media deadlines, final exams, workshop planning, award ceremonies and contest deadlines.

  • News Media Evaluations: Conduct staff-assessments as end-of-the-year activities. After producing the final publication you want evaluated, package it along with three other issues and send to Quill and Scroll. Learn more information and download the staff evaluation here. The NME entry period begins April 1; send evaluation materials by June 15 to receive the judges’ feedback by the start of the school year. Quill and Scroll also offers a shorter ratings-only service.
  • New member inductions: Identify students to induct as Quill and Scroll members. Plan induction ceremonies, if desired. Many staffs induct new members at the end of the school year. This is a good time to also order special awards, honor cords and member pins.
  • Encourage graduating senior staff members who plan to major in journalism or communications in college to apply for Quill and Scroll scholarships. Deadline is May 10.
  • Teachers planning to study journalism this summer to improve their instruction next year should consider applying for a Quill and Scroll scholarship for continuing education. Deadline is April 15.
  • ENJOY SUMMER!
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