NW Crown Awards


Contact: Steven Chappell, stevenc@nwmissouri.edu or 515-447-9630

Northwest Missourian, Tower Yearbook capture national honors

Northwest Student Media captured four national honors at the Spring National College Media Convention at the Sheraton Times Square Hotel in New York, March 9-12, 2013.

The Northwest Missourian and Tower Yearbook each were named Silver Crown medalists by Columbia Scholastic Press Association at a ceremony held March 10 during the conference. Additionally, the Missourian captured two Apple Awards best in show honors from the College Media Association, which hosted the conference: First place for Best Newspaper for its coverage of last spring’s budget cuts, and second place for Best Tweet for its coverage of the death of Tomarken Smith in the fall of 2012.

Ceaser “Trey” Williams served as editor of the Northwest Missourian for the Spring 2012 editions of the paper that were honored  by CSPA. Williams, a senior journalism major from Independence, Mo., said the award validated the hard work of the staff.

“Well, from my understanding it’s been a while since The Missourian has won this award, so to get back here is an accomplishment,” Williams said. “Then when I think of all the papers that submit things, and knowing we were selected as one of the best in the country, it makes all the hard work we put in worth it.”

Erin Funk served as editor of the Northwest Tower yearbook for 2011-2012.  Funk, a senior IDM major from Johnston, Iowa, said it was nice to know her staff continued a long tradition of excellence for the yearbook at Northwest.

“To know that, as editor in chief, I have continued the Tower and Northwest standard of excellence in student publications makes me extremely happy,” she said. “Yearbook was always a way for me to further my skills and establish a leadership role for myself, and I know it allowed the staff to do the same.”

Laura Widmer, who retired as Student Publications Director from Northwest in the summer of 2012, served as the adviser for the two honored media through July 2012. Steven Chappell has served as director of Student Publications since August 2012.

The Northwest Missourian and Northwest Tower were two among 19 Gold and 24 Silver Crowns presented at the ceremony, selected from 1,344 student publications who entered, representing student media published during the 2011-2012 academic year.

Judges scored the publications on writing, editing, design, content, concept, photography, art and graphics.

The judges had this to say about the two publications:

For the Northwest Missourian: “Using an insert as a spring season preview, the publication’s solid design and concept invites readership. Inside, reporters cover a variety of sports from softball to baseball to track to golf without clutter or repetition. An effective way to preview several sports in a creative, organized way, the back page includes more information, as well as schedules.”

For Tower: “Big, bold dominant images accompany the in-depth profiles in the book. The black and white studio-style portraits display riveting visual appeal that attracts the reader. In-depth profiles are featured throughout this book. In a Sense of Leadership, a faculty pioneer’s story is told. The journalistic writing style of lead, quote, transition, quote is emphasized in the writing.”

The CSPA is an international student press association uniting student journalists and faculty advisers at schools and colleges through educational conferences, idea exchanges and award programs. It has been owned by Columbia University since 1925 and operated as a program affiliated with its Graduate School of Journalism.

Photo by Rebecca Castillo |

Photo cutline: Several members of the Tower yearbook and Northwest Missourian newspaper staffs attended the College Media Association Spring College National Media Convention in New York, where they were honored as two of the best student media outlets in the country by Columbia Scholastic Press Association. From left: Jayde Balentine, Tower designer; Kelsey Schriver; Tower photographer; Steven Chappell, director of Student Publications, Laura Widmer, retired director of Student Publications, C. Bruce Watterson, CSPA chair of judging practices; Trey Williams, Missourian editor in chief; Josh Phillips, Missourian chief reporter; Rebekah Jerabek, copy editor for both the Missourian and Tower; and Ben Lawson, Missourian managing editor. 


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