University of Miami publications received two Gold Crowns and nine Apple Awards at the College Media Association Conference in New York City held March 11-14, 2015. The Crowns are honors given by the Columbia Scholastic Press Association and are the highest award a publication can earn from CSPA. Apple Awards, given in honor of David L. Adams, are a Best in Show award given each year at the CMA Spring Conference in New York City. The College Media Association is a source for media educators and advisers of student publications, aiming to support professional media and educators.

The Ibis yearbook won its ninth Gold Crown from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association for the 2014 book edited by Katherine Lee, who is now working at the Boston Globe. This is the sixth year in a row the Ibis has won a Gold Crown.

Distraction editors picked up their second Gold Crown for a combination of the printed edition and website production from the publication edited by Ivana Cruz and executive editor Raquel Zaldivar for the 2013-2014 academic year.

“I am proud of my super staffers. The Crowns are honors for an entire year’s worth of work on a student publication. The Ibis was one of four college Gold Crowns and Distraction was one of five hybrid magazine publications honored by CSPA. This is the highest honor a student publication can receive from the Columbia University press group, CSPA,” said Randy Stano, professor at the School of Communication and editorial adviser for the Ibis and Distraction. “I was told over the weekend that we continue to set the bar for student publication presentation and coverage. That is a wonderful commitment for a student publication staff.”

At the conference, editors from The Miami Hurricane gave a presentation to a packed room explaining how they turned the student-run newspaper from a bi-weekly print publication to a daily online news source. Attendees had many questions and were eager to learn how Alex Gonzalez, editor-in-chief, Lyssa Goldberg, online editor, Erika Glass, managing editor, and photo editor Nick Gangemi are able to lead the staff to produce content daily.

“A bi-weekly publication is not enough for a college or university to keep students informed. You have to report the news daily. That’s what the students have done. They transformed The Miami Hurricane into a daily news operation. Online news is what students read and what they expect. The editors were very impressive in their presentation. It takes a lot of work to run a daily news site, and their expertise was sought by conference attendees,” said Ileana Oroza, professor in the School of Communication and faculty adviser for The Miami Hurricane.

The Miami Hurricane, Ibis and Distraction also took top honors at the David L. Adams Apple competition. The student publications brought home three Apple Awards and several runner-ups in individual Apple competitions for publications attending the conference.

The Miami Hurricane won an Apple Award for best newspaper in the more than 10,000 student circulation category. Distraction won two Apple Awards — one for a magazine spread designed by Michelle Lock and the second for a print advertisement page designed by Claudia Fernandez. Distraction took second place in the magazine cover category for its latest issue. 

Ibis yearbook picked up second place honors in yearbook covers and printed ads and two third place honors for yearbook spreads and their Facebook home page presentation. 

In the on-site Apple Design Contest for individual one-on-one competition between other colleges and universities, Michelle Lock finished second to a designer from the Savannah School of Art and Design.

“It was great to keep seeing the University of Miami name appear on the video screen in the front of the conference ballroom as the honors were announced,” said Stano.