Ouachita Baptist University’s 2012-2013 Ouachitonian yearbook recently earned seven Gold Circle Awards for individual student work from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA). The yearbook was also featured in the 2014 Jostens Look Book as an example of excellence and creativity.
“For the students, this is affirmation of their hard work and creative talent,” said Dr. Deborah Root, chair of OBU’s Rogers Department of Communications and faculty adviser to the Ouachitonian. “For the staff, it is validation that a school the size of Ouachita can compete with the major universities. Of all the yearbooks that received Gold Circle Awards, we were the smallest university recognized.”
The CSPA is an international student press association that aims to support student journalists and their faculty advisers by providing them with various opportunities to learn and interact. The association’s annual Gold Circle Awards are presented to student writers, editors, designers and photographers for their individual achievements in either online or print media.
This year, 4,279 entries from colleges or universities throughout the United States were submitted for the competition; only 794 of these entries received awards.
“I was so excited to hear that we had received awards in such great categories, especially ahead of some of these much larger schools,” said Ouachitonian Editor-In-Chief Mauri Sparks, a senior Christian studies/Christian ministries and mass communications major from Queen City, Texas. Sparks received first place for her end sheet spread “#speaknow/#wehavesoken” and second place in design portfolio for the Ouachitonian.
Other staff members who received Gold Circle Awards include:
“Each of the awards from these categories reflect the great writing and design of all the students who worked on the book,” said Sparks. “The awards show the dedication our staff has for producing such an outstanding book, and I am very proud of every student who contributed.”
In addition to the Gold Circle Awards, the 2014 Jostens Look Book highlights the best yearbooks in design and coverage. The Ouachitonian was one of only 426 yearbooks selected from approximately 3,000 entries.
“It’s an honor to be included in this year’s Jostens Look Book,” said Root. “It’s the best of the best in high school and college yearbooks, and it’s nice to be recognized among the top books in the nation.”
Other staff members who contributed to the 2012-2013 yearbook include: Academics Editor Jake Coffman, a senior music major from Tyronza, Ark.; Photo Editor Nicole McPhate, a 2013 graduate from Conway, Ark.; and Student Life Editor Aly Smith, a junior mass communications and graphic design major from Sherwood, Ark.
For more information, contact Dr. Deborah Root at firstname.lastname@example.org or (870) 245-5510.
By Taylor Tomlinson