Clarion Staff Receives Journalism Awards

By Kevin Chen, Clarion Staff

On May 9th, nine Kennedy Clarion students took home awards for their outstanding work this year at the annual journalism award ceremony hosted by the Sacramento High School Journalism Network. Young editors, writers, cartoonists, and photographers from high schools across the area met at the Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) Conference Center to celebrate this annual event, with the best submissions in each category receiving awards. This year, Clarion newspaper staff members won several awards for their amazing work:  best personal column, best editorial writing, best criticism writing, best photography, best editorial cartoon, and best graphic design.

Clarion staff members attending annual event (L to R) Hana Ruiz, Wendy Xiong, Liliana Lopez, Kevin Chen, Adrianna Iorio, Desiree Leong, Jenelle Lum, Kimberly Landeck.  Photo by Clarion Advisor Mr. Hanzlik

Staff writer Hana Ruiz and sections editor Liliana Lopez’ article “Her Own Did Not Receive Her: Actress Yalitza Aparicio Slighted After Roma” won first place for Best Criticism Writing. The article is a review of the 2018 movie Roma and discusses the importance of lead actress Yalitza Aparicio’s status as an actress and why her spot in the acting world is so valued.

Taking top honors for best editorial cartoon was Hana Ruiz with her comic entitled “La Frontera.” This comic poked fun at President Trump’s interference at the U.S.-Mexico border, comparing him to the character from the childhood rhyme Humpty Dumpty.

Second place awards went to several Clarion staff members including Editor in Chief Adrianna Iorio’s news article “Divided Campus”, who sought to discover if Kennedy, on a smaller scale, is as politically polarized as our nation.    Another second place article, “Legality, Morality, and Police Brutality”, was written by staff writer Parker Scarpa. The article elaborated on his opinion on the Stephon Clark incident and questioned what was truly more important: the ability to potentially defuse dangerous situations or the right of an innocent citizen to live.

Winning second place for Best Criticism Writing was Production Manager Kimberly Landeck’s album review, “Mendes’ Latest Strikes a Chord with Teens.” The article, which reviews Shawn Mendes’ song In My Blood, connects high school life to the song’s lyrics, even going so far as to reference specific musical changes and progressions in the song.  Former photographer Wendy Xiong won second place for photography with a photo  capturing a prideful moment of the Cougar swimming team celebrating a brief victory during their championship game against McClatchy.

Running into third place of editorial writing was “NIKE: Goddess of Victory and Advertising” by  Photography Editor Sid Slesicki, who speaks on Nike’s decision to support the take a knee movement which developed in the NFL. Slesicki analyzed how this move benefitted both Nike’s image and finances.

Honorable mention for Best Criticism writing was awarded to Managing Editor Desiree Leong, who wrote a review about the all-Asian-cast movie Crazy Rich Asians. She explains how the movie relates to her own Chinese traditions, detailing how it is the first all-Asian American movie in years to hold no martial arts but, rather, is a one of a kind rom-com.

Props to Production Manager Kimberly Landeck and Creative Director Jenelle Lum won second place in best graphic art and design for their much-appreciated work on the Clarion masthead which includes the name and logo.

Congratulations to all those who won awards and were recognized by the local student journalism community for their best efforts

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