CSMA

Annual day at state capitol draws nearly 100

And students had the chance to participate in writing, photo, and video contests on the day

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Placewinners in the four contests growing out of the annual CSMA Capitol Hill Press Conference have been announced.

The press conference, a tradition since 1982, brings students to the state capitol to meet with representatives, tour the building, and question a variety of sources in a press conference setting.

Speakers for the Feb. 26 event included Megan Schrader, editorial writer for the Denver Post; Dr. Katy Anthes, Commissioner of the Colorado Department of Education; Rep. Barbara McLachlan, from Durango; and Rep. Jim Wilson, from Salida.

The writing, photojournalism, and video media contests ask students to report on some aspect of the day, and those submissions may or may not be published by the student media.

Perhaps due to the fact that the Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS shootings had occurred just 12 days prior, the issue of school safety was on most the minds of most participants. The questions from students of our speakers were overwhelmingly on safety, guns, and mental health, and many were understandably emotional. The judge for the writing contests commented that all those emotions (plus no other clear news peg from the day) may have affected the on-the-spot writing contests. Many news-feature entries, for instance, included opinions from reporters, and many of the commentaries seemed to lack focus, perhaps taking on too much (considering the complexity of the safety issue).

As always with on-the-spot writing competitions, the news-features and commentaries were judged as “good first drafts” (students had 90 minutes to write).

All place winners were mailed award certificates.

The winners:
News-Feature Writing (8 entries)
1st Place – Noel Somogyi, Eagle Valley HS

Commentary Writing (9 entries)
1st Place – Jonathan Silva, Palmer Ridge HS
2nd Place – Parker Jones, Conifer HS

Photojournalism (5 entries)
1st Place – Trinity Foreman, Conifer HS (see her portfolio plus captions in the slide show above)
2nd Place – Olivia Ary & Jose Orenday, Regis Jesuit HS (see their portfolio plus captions in the slide show above)

Video Media (5 entries)
1st Place – Danny DeBrincat & Shannon Drotar, Castle View HS
2nd Place – Bella Rulon & Hannah Medina, Eagle Valley HS
3rd Place – Lilly Brinkman, Conifer HS

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Colorado Student Media Association
Annual day at state capitol draws nearly 100