The staffs of Distraction Magazine and Distraction online are continuing their decade-long history of receiving national and state recognition for their work by winning numerous awards from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) and at the Sunshine State Awards presented by the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).

Distraction Magazine continues to attract staffers that showcase their talent in the printed edition, as well as the online and digital updates of the magazine. The staffs work hard to produce a features publication for the students of the University of Miami,” said Randy Stano, editorial advisor for Distraction Magazine and professor of practice in the Department of Journalism and Media Management.

The 2018-2019 editions of Distraction Magazine received 46 Gold Circle awards from the CSPA. Edited by Teddy Wilson, a senior at the University of Miami, the magazine earned seven first places, nine second places, 12 third places, and 18 certificates of merit in the annual CSPA collegiate competition.

“Being recognized through these awards is the next best thing after the local excitement and reception surrounding the magazine. Personally, these awards are a nice affirmation that I should stick to doing what I love most—magazine journalism,” said Wilson.

The CSPA recognized Distraction staffers for their work in areas including non-fiction writing, informational graphics, single page design, opening features spread design, and design portfolio.

“The staffs continue to prove themselves in state, regional, and national competitions,” said Stano.

At the recently announced Sunshine State Awards from the SPJ, Distraction won Best Coverage of Race and Minorities for Elisa Baena and Jillian Paraiso’s features Haiti: Their American Struggle, Santeria: Little Havana, Big Charm, and Motion Pictures, Social Change.

Although Distraction normally competes amongst other college publications in the Sunshine State Awards, for the second year in a row the magazine placed in a professional magazine category. For a collection of pages designed by Joey Hass and Michael Haring, Distraction earned first place in Inside Design. The page designs included Hooked on Seafood, Art of Fashion, and Motion Pictures: Social Change. In 2018, Distraction won first place in the professional magazine Investigative Reporting category for The Invisible Trade, an article compiled by Marissa Vonesh, Sidney Sherman, Alexa Aguilar, and Allie Pakrosnis. 

“I think it is outstanding that for two years Distraction Magazine has placed in the professional magazine level of competition for the Sunshine State Awards SPJ Competition,” said Stano.

Along with awards for Best Coverage of Race and Minorities and Inside Design, Distraction was also recognized in the Best Page Design, Best Website, Best Student Publication, and Inside Design categories at the Sunshine State Awards.

“For Distraction’s entire staff, the awards make the grueling work of putting together the magazine feel worth it. We already know that we love making the product, so for others to love it and see the hard work behind it is a great feeling,” said Wilson.

To view electronic versions of Distraction Magazine, visit