Ouachita Baptist University’s 2011 Ouachitonian yearbook earned an All-American honor rating from the Associated Collegiate Press (ACP). The All-American rating is the highest award in yearbook critique available from ACP, which is the oldest and largest national membership organization for collegiate journalists.
Each ACP judge evaluates submissions on each of five categories including concept/essentials, coverage, writing/editing, layout/design and photography. The Ouachitonian earned perfect or near-perfect scores in the concept/essentials, writing/editing, layout/design and photography categories, earning Marks of Distinction in those areas.
In her comments, the ACP judge for the yearbook called the cover “eye-catching,” the content “informative” and the spread designs “beautiful” and “effective” with “beautiful and clear photos throughout. … I’m glad to see that the Ouachitonian has maintained its tradition of excellence.”
“This critique offers us suggestions on how to improve the book but also a validation that our students are doing an outstanding job in all aspects of creating the publication,” said Dr. Deborah Root, chair of the Rogers Department of Communications and adviser for the Ouachitonian. “It’s always nice to see our students rewarded for the hard work. The All-American rating along with the Gold Medalist rating from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) certainly encourages students to continue the strong tradition.”
While this was the first time in several years the Ouachitonian has entered the ACP critique, Root said she felt the additional feedback would strengthen future publications. “It’s the other major college society that offers critiques, and it’s good to get feedback, so we sent in books to both contests to compare,” Root said. “There is only one judge who looks at your book in each contest so this way we got two different points of view.”
“Seeing the 2011 Ouachitonian being recognized nationally to me confirms the impact that our book can have. Cassie (Harrell) Franklin and I wanted a book that was about students and inspired them to be better people, people who lived out their faith,” said Becca Watts, a 2011 mass communications graduate and co-editor-in-chief of the book with Franklin. “Our staff took that concept, worked it and turned it into the book you see. We all worked to communicate the idea that each us have the opportunity to make a difference in the world.
“Working on the yearbook staff was an amazing experience all four years,” Watts added. “Everything I learned I use now in my current job, and I built relationships with fellow staff members that will last for years to come.”
In addition to Watts and Franklin, also a 2011 mass communications graduate, members of the 2011 Ouachitonian staff included: Academics Editor Tori Abellera, a sophomore mass communications major from Garland, Texas; Community Editor Jake Coffman, a sophomore music major from Tyronza, Ark.; Assistant Editor Tanner Huffman, a senior mass communications and graphic design major from Wynne, Ark.; Sports Editor Travis King, a junior mass communications major from Dallas, Texas; Student Life Editor Sarah Richardson, a 2011 mass communications graduate; and Organizations Editor Mauri Sparks, a junior Christian media and communications major from Queen City, Texas. Callie Stephens, a 2011 mass communications graduate, served as editor of the photo lab, which provided photography for the yearbook.
For more information, contact Dr. Deborah Root at firstname.lastname@example.org or (870) 245-5208.
By Breanne Goodrum