The Indiana Collegiate Press Association awarded second place to The Record in the “Newspaper of the Year” competition in the college division, powered by a series of top finishes across writing categories.
Goshen College earned a collective 71 points, trailing Wabash College, which had 92 points, and edging out Taylor University, which finished in third, with 63 points. The second-place finish ends a run of five consecutive years in which The Record claimed the first-place title as “Newspaper of the Year.”
Jakyra Green took first place for her news coverage of an Indiana state bill that could constrain how teachers prepare lessons in racism, sexism and discrimination. Judges said that this “quick-turn piece” reminded students of “the power that their voices could have on the state and even national stage.”
In the feature category, Mariela Esparza won first place for “a fun, vibrant story” in which the narrative was fueled by insightful quotes from the smallest of students, at the Campus Center for Young Children.
Esparza’s entertainment column on Taylor Swift also earned first place for an “honest and significant” look at “the social and political commentary surrounding Swift.” As the headline put it, “Not-so-swift: Taylor Swift’s false radicalism.”
Caleb Shenk also claimed two first-place awards, one for his coverage of the return of the International Student Club’s annual coffeehouse after two years of cancellations because of Covid. The story opened with a tribute to 39 flags, 30 performers, 12 acts and three hosts. Shenk also took first for a sports feature in which he confirmed that “testimonials for pickleball abound” in Goshen.
The judges said that the lead paragraph from Daniel Eash-Scott helped to secure a first place in sports column competition: “Goshen College on Friday revealed a new mascot and official cheerleader for athletics: Dash the Squirrel. I’m now out of a job.” Eash-Scott recounted how he bought a squirrel suit and served as the unofficial college mascot for the prior nine months.
Denver Beck also earned first place for an illustration. The staff took first place for a special pullout section that describes the depth and breadth of research at Goshen College and “that features even research by the university president.”
Eleven students at Goshen College collected 23 awards in the ICPA’s annual contest on April 1. As Covid receded, this was the first time in four years that the awards were presented in person, in Indianapolis, rather than online.
The Record, which publishes a weekly print edition and competes against schools across the state with enrollment under 3,000, has received the top billing six times in the last eight years.
The awards recognized Record staff from the spring of 2022, when Sierra Ross Richer served as executive editor, and the fall of 2022, when Augusta Nafziger was editor.
Second-place awards went to Eash-Scott, news story; Yujin Kim, sports page design; Tyson Miller, news photo; Shenk, best entertainment review; and Spencer Waterman, sports photo.
Third-place awards included Sadie Brenneman, opinion column; Eash-Scott, sports news story; Green, in-depth story; Greta Lapp Klassen, editorial cartoon and special section front cover; Miller, photo essay and news photo; and Ross Richer, staff editorial.
“These awards confirm that this was a standout year for journalism at Goshen College, with the written word leading the way,” said Duane Stoltzfus, professor of communication and adviser to The Record. “As the judges noted, the staff produced an exceptional range of diverse stories.”