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Meramec and Forest Park Win Top Honors - Again

Friday, April 16, 2021

As much as 2020 changed how almost everything operated, it didn’t alter what is becoming a nearly annual event for the St. Louis Community College at Meramec’s The Montage.

The student-run newspaper earned top honors at the Missouri College Media Association convention for the fourth consecutive year. It received 25 awards, including Best Overall Newspaper and first place in the coveted Sweepstakes Award in the two-year school division.

“I am honestly beyond proud of all the work that they’ve done,” said Ashley Biundo, The Montage’s editor-in-chief said. “It’s been tough for everyone for the past year, but they really stepped up. This year turned out better than what was expected.”

The MCMA announced award winners at this year’s virtual conference on April 9.

STLCC-Forest Park’s The Scene also had a strong showing with 17 honors. It took first place in the Website category and earned the top three awards in News Writing. The Scene also finished third in the sweepstakes' competition in which points are tallied from placing in the individual categories.

First-year student Casaan Whitney took home four awards for The Scene. He earned second, third and honorable mention for Feature Photography and honorable mention for Feature Writing.

A guard on the men’s basketball team, Whitney got connected with the newspaper after coach Terry Collins suggested Whitney might enjoy the experience. He was surprised when he pulled down so many honors.

“It feels good because I didn’t even know they had an award ceremony,” he said. “I just like taking pictures. It feels good to have my work recognized.”

The awards come from publications – both print and online – during the calendar year 2020. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, only about two months of that period was with students away from campus during which both schools reduced their print editions to once a month.

"We are particularly proud of these awards, considering The Scene operated from March through December with a skeleton staff,” Teri Maddox, The Scene’s faculty adviser said.

Biundo said since ending regular in-person meetings and taking the publication process off campus her staff faced many hurdles. That’s in large part what makes this year’s awards even more satisfying.

“I was so excited,” she said. “I was honestly, I know this will sound kind of lame, but I was close to crying because of how this past year has been.”

STLCC-Florissant Valley’s The Forum did not submit any pieces for consideration and the Wildwood campus doesn’t have a student newspaper.

List of Awards

The Montage:

Best Overall Newspaper (first); Sweepstakes Award (first); Special Section/Supplement (first); Website (second); Editorial Writing (first, second, third – Max Wilson); Feature Writing (second – Biundo), (third – Biundo, Max Wilson); In-Depth Reporting (first – Jacob Politte, Barak Adler, Briana Heaney), (honorable mention – Max Wilson); Investigative Reporting (first – Max Wilson), (second – Heaney); Column (second – Politte); Feature Photography (first – Syed Ali); Sports Photography (second – Biundo), (third – John Hundley); Information Graphic (first – Mary Wilson), (third –Jools Pulcher); Story Illustration (first – Lily Helmer); Page One Design (first – Biundo, Helmer); Editorial Section (first – Politte); Sports Page (second – Biundo, Andrew Crowdus); Photo Page (second – Biundo, Hundley); Feature Page (first – Biundo, Jason Waters, Dalila Kahvedzic)

The Scene:

Best Overall Newspaper (third); Sweepstakes Award (third); News Writing (first – Joshua Phelps), (second – Ethan Tutor), (third – Mackenzie Gregory); Feature Writing (honorable mention – Whitney); Regular Column (Jordyn Barber); Entertainment Review (Second – Barber); News Photography (first – Larry Cox); (second – Markell Tompkins); Feature Photography (second, third, honorable mention – Whitney); Non-Political/Entertainment Cartoon (Cox); Photo Page (first – Katelyn Clancy, Markell Tompkins, Joshua Phelps); (third – Clancy, Cox, Tompkins, Angelica Woody); Website (Victor Paletta)

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