Cal Poly’s Mustang Media Group Wins Best Newspaper Along With 16 Other Awards at National Journalism Conference
By Sophia Lincoln
Mustang Media Group Wins 17 Awards
Cal Poly’s student-run news source, Mustang Media Group, won 17 awards at this year’s Associate Collegiate Press (ACP) Conference in Long Beach, California. Mustang Media Group (MMG) includes the print and digital newspaper, Mustang News, as well as the student-run FM radio station, KCPR, and the TV broadcast team, MNTV.
For the ACP’s Best of Show Awards, MMG won First Place for Best Broadcast News Program for four-year universities, as well as Second Place for Best Newspaper for four-year universities with more than 10,000 students, and Fifth Place for Best Website for four-year universities with more than 10,000 students.
For the California College Media Association (CCMA) Awards, which recognizes various California college media organizations, Mustang News won First Place for Best Newspaper ahead of San Jose State and University of California Los Angeles. The student-run organization also won First Place for Best Social Media Reporting and First Place for Best News Series. This was the first time in recent history that the student-run newspaper earned such recognition.
"Being recognized as the best university newspaper in California speaks to the talent level and dedication of the many students who contribute time, effort and creativity to keeping readers informed and engaged,” Journalism Department Chair and Professor Brady Teufel said. “The judge’s specific recognition of the newspaper’s COVID-19 coverage and articles in Spanish is a testament to the important role that Mustang News fills in the campus and local community.”
During the 2021-22 academic year, Mustang News reporters tackled challenging topics including the Kristin Smart case, COVID-19 and remote learning with what judges from the California College Media Association described as a “thoughtful” combination of reporting and editing.
"All of the content teams for Mustang Media Group have done an amazing job this past year,” MMG General Manager Jon Schlitt said. “From getting up early in the morning to bag and deliver papers during the pandemic to covering how the pandemic has affected all aspects of student life at Cal Poly, their work has been absolutely extraordinary. I'm thrilled to see that work recognized as the best in the state as well as, in some cases, in the entire nation."
MMG Editor-in-Chief and journalism senior Tessa Hughes was one of a handful of students from MMG to attend the conference.
“I am so beyond proud of my team and all that they have accomplished this year,” said Hughes. “The awards won at ACP and CCMA exemplify that they 100 percent deserved the recognition. I am still in shock at the win and couldn’t be more excited. My time at Mustang Media Group has been my favorite part at college.”
The entire list of awards that Mustang Media Group received at the conference are listed below.
California College Media Awards:
First Place: Best Newspaper - Tessa Hughes, Cameryn Oakes, Sabrina Pascua, Stephanie Zappelli
First Place: Best Headline Portfoilo - Omar Rashad
First Place: Best Newspaper Inside Page/Spread Design - Zara Iqbal, Nicole Herhusky
First Place: Best News Series - Catherine Allen, Lauren Boyer, Madison Bellah, Abigail O'Branovich, Fuave Kootnz, Ava Kershner
First Place: Best Social Media Reporting: Von Balanon, Sydney Ozawa, Catherine Allen, Harrison Kirk, Mason Ogden
First Place: Best Sports Photograph - Kyle Calzia
Second Place: Best Photo Illustration - Kayla Stuart, Marta Lukomska
Second Place: Best Editorial Cartoon - Zara Iqbal
Second Place: Best Non-Breaking News Story - Maureen McNamara, Omar Rashad
Third Place: Best Feature Photograph - Fenn Bruns
Third Place: Best News Photograph - Kyle Calzia
Third Place: Best Newspaper Website - Tessa Hughes, Sabrina Pascua, Cameryn Oakes, Stephanie Zappelli, Adam Birder
Third Place: Best Online Advertisement - Elaine Do
Third Place: Best Overall Newspaper Design - Marta Lukomska, Solena Aguilar, Von Balanon
Associated Collegiate Press: Best of Show awards
First Place - Best Broadcast News Program (Four Year Campus)
Second Place - Best Newspaper/ Four Year Campus, more than 10,000 students
Fifth Place - Best Website/Four Year Campus, more than 10,000 students