The Northern Light, University of Alaska Anchorage’s student newspaper, has been awarded an Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Award in the overall four-year university, non-daily newspaper category.
The Pacemaker is one of college journalism’s oldest and most prestigious awards for general excellence. The first Pacemaker was awarded in 1927. This is the second time The Northern Light has won a Pacemaker in three years. The newspaper was also selected as a finalist in 2007.
On hand to receive the award on behalf of The Northern Light were the Managing Editor Taylor Hall, News Editor Matthew Caprioli and Senior Graphics Designer CJ Beaudrie. They attended the National College Media Convention in Orlando, Fla., and received the award in a ceremony Oct. 29.
The newspaper was recognized for content in the 2010-2011 school year. Award judges come from top media organizations across the country, which this year included Quintessence Publishing and The Atlantic. The judges consider coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership on the opinion page, evidence of in-depth reporting, design, photography, art and graphics.
“I’m continually impressed with the dedication and leadership of the TNL staff who work tirelessly to produce a campus newspaper every week throughout the semester,” said Annie Route, director of Student Life and Leadership at UAA and the administrative adviser to the newspaper. “The students of TNL are continually learning and applying skills that will serve them throughout their lives.”
One of The Northern Light’s strengths was the use of locally produced content. The paper is entirely student produced and only relies on wire stories to produce its “Statewide Briefs.” The rest of the paper is devoted to original reporting. The Northern Light also takes care to reflect all aspects of student life, from academics and administration to sports, arts and community news. Another strong point for The Northern Light last year was its sports photography.
“The University of Alaska Anchorage community has a valuable news organization in The Northern Light,” said Paola Banchero, the faculty adviser. “This award validates the hard work students put into publishing an excellent news outlet.”