Guilfordian wins best in show

On the plane home from Kansas City, Mo., Guilfordian editor-in-chief Ben Dedman clutched a trophy in both hands, garnering odd looks from nearby passengers. Dedman was returning from the Oct. 29-Nov. 2 87th Annual National College Media Convention, a competition for college newspapers nationwide. The Guilfordian won Best in Show for a weekly tabloid, topping hundreds of contenders.

According to the judges, the criteria for success included coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership on the opinion page, evidence of in-depth reporting, design, photography, art and graphics.

Judges evaluated each newspaper in a certain category, distinguishing smaller newspapers, called “tabloids,” from larger newspapers, called “broadsheets.” Issue frequency was taken into account as well.

Despite the seemingly narrow category-four-year weekly tabloid-many others vied for the spot.

” It’s truly amazing that we beat much larger schools, schools that have fully developed journalism programs and majors, which we do not,” Guilfordian faculty adviser and journalism professor Jeff Jeske said. “The other four schools that placed were all universities. The smallest of them is twice our size.”

The number of college media delegates exceeded 2500 this year, with winners of the other major categories hailing from Elon University, University of North Florida, and York University in Toronto.

Jeske suggests that the current staff of the Guilfordian helped the newspaper make it to the top.

“This year’s staff is simply first-rate,” he said. “I should also point out that staffs of recent years have contributed significantly to this award . we’ve seen incremental improvement every year in the overall quality of the paper.”

Apart from the competition, the convention offered opportunities to attend lectures and tutorials on improving college newspapers. The Guilfordian may feature new and improved design and content, thanks to the chance to listen to experienced journalists and compare techniques with other newspapers.

Staffers who attended included editor-in-chief Ben Dedman, section editors Megan Feil, Lauren Newmyer, and Paddy Lehane, managing editor Emily Ferris, layout editors Jesse Crews and Max George, staff writer Meredith Jones, senior writer Nasimeh Easton, and staff adviser Jeff Jeske.

When asked about the trophy, Dedman held it tighter. “I’m not letting go of this for at least a week,” he said.