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The Student News Site of Prospect High School


The Student News Site of Prospect High School



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Yearbook staff receives amplitude of awards


Crest editor-in-chief Kendall Neumann works on the yearbook.

By Diana Leane, copy editor
When English teacher Nicole Stoltz became yearbook director five years ago, awards were nowhere on her radar. Because the process was new to her, she spent the year learning various techniques from the staff.
Since then, the staff has learned ways to better the yearbook through attending conferences and sifting through other schools’ books. According to Stoltz, the staff’s drive to always improve resulted in the numerous awards the yearbook won this year.
These achievements include a full-spread feature in yearbook company Jostens’ annual “best-of-the-best” yearbook lookbook, a place in Jostens’ sample yearbook bundle that is sent to high schools throughout the nation and many more awards through various associations (see “Complete list of awards”). In order to be chosen for Josten’s lookbook, the yearbook had to be one of about 20 books to be chosen out of 4,000, according to Stoltz.
[column size=one_half position=first ]
Complete list of awards:

  • Jostens:
    • Featured in Jostens’ lookbook
    • Selected for Jostens’ book bundle
  • Southern Illinois School Press Association (SISPA)
    • 1st in copywriting
    • 1st in school coverage
    • 1st in photography
    • 1st in layout and design
    • Golden Dozen Award
  • Illinois Journalism Education Association (IJEA)
    • 1st in photography
    • 2nd in layout and design
    • 3rd in divider pages
    • 5 honorable mentions
  • Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA)
    • Silver medal
  • American Scholastic Press Association (ASPA)
    • 1st place rating
  • National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA)
    • 1st class honor rating
    • Mark of distinction

“I think [the contests] are a way to keep [the staff] excited and interested and wanting to perfect the book as best as they can,” Stoltz said.
According to Stoltz, these awards provide the hardworking staff members with recognition. Because the yearbook staff only produces one book a year, they only receive feedback on the couple of days the book is distributed, and while many have positive comments, the staff also receives negative feedback, so the awards prove that despite criticism, their efforts were successful.
However, Stoltz puts little emphasis on the awards and instead stresses producing a quality book that the Prospect community will enjoy. Editor-in-chief senior Kendall Neumann is very proud of this year’s book and feels the staff accomplished this.
According to Neumann, if last year and this year’s books were placed side-by-side, the growth would be very noticeable. Stoltz believes Neumann has greatly influenced this year’s successes.
“Truly because of [Kendall’s] abilities and her qualifications and her ability to lead this yearbook group, I think that’s why we’re able to receive a lot of these awards,” Stoltz said.
Neumann encourages the staff’s growth by always changing the yearbook. Specifically, Neumann suggested shifting the book’s layout from last year’s, which included lot of large pictures, to fewer large pictures and more writing.
Neumann is one of two seniors on staff this year, so she and Stoltz consider this a “reinventing year.” She hopes that the environment Neumann has helped create will encourage the newer, younger members to stick with the class.
“I think a big part of keeping the class on their toes and keeping them wanting to write, edit and continue working on the book is the little things we do like team building and playing music in the background and making it just a fun atmosphere so that … work doesn’t feel like work,” Neumann said.

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