PRICE—In its second year of membership in the Utah Press Association, USU Eastern’s Eagle student newspaper continued to add accolades to its “wall of fame” as the staff brought home four first-place awards, two second-place awards and five third-place awards at the annual winter convention in Springville Saturday night.
Eagle editor KC Smurthwaite of Boise won first place for Best Sports Column for his “Smurf Turf” series, while sports editor David Osborne Jr. of West Jordan took second place for his “Next on the Tee” sports columns. Daylan Jones of Layton won first place for designing the Best Sports Page and third places for Best Photo Page, Best Advertising Idea, and Best Staff-Produced Ad.
Kate Johnson of Spring Glen won first place for Best Front Page design, while Jessa Love Adams of Pleasant Grove took first place for Best Sports Photo.
The design skills of Valeria Moncada of Price won her second place for Best Feature or Community Lifestyles Page, while the Eagle staff garnered third place for The Best News Series on the death of Eastern’s men’s basketball coach Brad Barton in October. The staff also won third place for the Best News Photograph of the men’s basketball team surrounding their coach’s casket at his funeral.
“The best part about winning any award in the UPA contest, is that USU-CEU students compete against professionals in the journalism field,” said Eagle adviser Susan Polster. “The Eagle has the smallest circulation of all the UPA member newspapers with 1,000 papers printed. Kudos to The Eagle staff.”
The newspaper was judged on its issues appearing from spring 2011, with Mae Goss and Kellie Burke-Gabossi serving as editors, and fall 2011, with Smurthwaite as editor. Polster also attributed much of The Eagle’s success to Sun Advocate publisher Rick Shaw, who funds the Eagle’s UPA fee. “He proposed and funded our entrance into UPA and for this I am deeply appreciative,” Polster said.
The Eagle was judged in group one of the four newspaper categories, which includes all Utah weeklies and newspapers up to 2,500 in circulation. The college newspapers that are part of UPA include Utah Valley University, Brigham Young University, University of Utah, Weber State University, Utah State University, and USU Eastern. Weber State University also won several awards that evening with their editor, Nate Davis, who previously served as Eagle sports editor for two years.
The Utah Press Association was created in 1893 to represent Utah’s newspaper publishers. The organization is Utah’s oldest trade association. Its website reads, “As an organization, we represent Utah’s finest, most respected journalism. Utah Press Association annually recognizes excellence in our state’s newspapers and presents awards to industry leaders.”