• The Boiling Point has reached its millionth online view! Thank you, readers!
Shalhevet news online: When we know it, you'll know it

The Boiling Point

Shalhevet news online: When we know it, you'll know it

The Boiling Point

Shalhevet news online: When we know it, you'll know it

The Boiling Point

Newspaper contest adds category for print-online ‘hybrids,’ and Boiling Point wins a Gold Crown

Rachel Lester ’12
JUDGE: CSPA Crown chairman C. Bruce Watterson said the Boiling Point gave readers ‘unique’ angles on stories.

Just before Passover, the Boiling Point was awarded the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s Gold Crown award for print-and-online “hybrid” publications — an honor only eight newspapers across the nation achieved – along with two Gold Circle awards, both First Place, for online news and feature writing during the 2011-12 school year.

The “hybrid” category was new this year, and the first time the CSPA had recognized publications for reaching readers in two media at once.  Contest chairman C. Bruce Watterson said the reason was that students were doing pioneering work in this new journalistic form.

“We had a lot of great newspapers that were so professional in their coverage online as well as their coverage in print, that it begged to have its own category,” said Mr. Watterson, who was interviewed by Shalhevet alumna Rachel Lester ’12 after the awards ceremony in New York.  “And especially good coverage, (and) especially good graphic patterns — as good as some professionals. In fact, better.”

The Gold Crown is the highest award offered by the CSPA, and this is the first time Shalhevet had managed to win it.  It is equivalent to the Pacemaker, sponsored by the rival NSPA (National Scholastic Press Association), for which the Boiling Point was a finalist last year.

Rachel Lester, who was 2011-12 Managing Editor and Director of Layout and Design, attended the awards ceremony at Columbia and transferred the giant plaque from New York to the halls of Shalhevet, where Boiling Point advisor Mrs. Joelle Keene presented it to the school at Town Hall April 10.

 “One of the greatest parts of The Boiling Point, I think is the coverage,” Mr. Watterson said. “Looking for a cool angle that students will appreciate in print, and maybe think about intellectually.”

Other winners of the Gold Crown for hybrids were from Kansas, Indiana, Virginia, Texas and Maryland, and two other California high schools also won.  The Harvard-Westlake Chronicle won a second-place Silver Crown in the same category.

Leila Miller ’12, last year’s Editor-in-Chief, gave credit to the entire staff for the achievement.

“We had a great team last year,” said Leila . “We worked very hard to make the paper as perfect as possible, in terms of both content and layout.”

Rachel said improvements in layout had been key.

“Judges have always been impressed by the quality of our coverage, to the point where we were really held back by having less than amazing layout,” Rachel said. “In the past couple of years, though, our layout improved a lot.”

Also announced were two more CSPA Gold Circle awards for last year’s coverage, this time for website stories.  Current Editor-in-Chief Colleen Bazak and current Arts Editor Hannah-Leeba Ellenhorn won First Prize for a News Feature in Digital Media for their article about the seriousness of depression and its potential effects on students.  This story took months to complete.

“It was really exciting to win an award for this particular story,” said Colleen, interviewed via e-mail from Poland, where she learned of her award while on the senior trip. “It took so long to write and was the story I put the most effort into.”

In the News Writing category, the Boiling Point staff as a whole won for its coverage of the fake drug-testing prank and the controversy it sparked for the Boiling Point after SAC announced Color-War breakout. SAC used the ruse as a way to announce Color War, spreading rumors which the administration confirmed to the Boiling Point, which in turn published the story on its website, www.shalhevetboilingpoint.com.

However, after Color-War breakout they realized the story was false and wrote new articles, correcting the facts and talking about the chain of events. This coverage ultimately earned the Boiling Point its third major digital award from the CSPA.

To qualify for these awards, schools submit their newspaper, news magazine, website or yearbook and critics select the top 16 in America out of the hundreds that are submitted in each category. The best eight are awarded the Gold Crown, and then the other eight runner-ups are given the Silver Crown.  The Crown Awards signify an overall excellent publication, whether in print, online-only, print-online hybrid, news magazine or yearbook.

In addition to receiving the award, Mrs. Keene also taught two workshops for student journalists who attended the CSPA conference, one on how to cover breaking news in print and online and the other on how to source large-scale feature stories.

Boiling Point staffers normally attend as well, but stayed home this year because of the dates’ being so close to Passover.


Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Eric Bazak
Eric Bazak, Editor-in-Chief Emeritus

After serving as staff writer, Features Editor, and Outside News Editor over the previous three years, Eric Bazak served as Editor-in-Chief for the 2015-16 school year. He is currently a freshman at UCLA.

Eric won numerous awards for his work on the Boiling Point.

CSPA 2015 Gold Circle Certificate of Merit in News Writing (print)
CSPA 2015 AGold Circle Certificate of Merit in In-depth/Feature Story (print)
Quill & Scroll 2016 National Award in Profile Writing
Quill & Scroll 2015 National Award in News Writing
Jewish Scholastic Press Association, 2014 2nd Prize in News & Feature Writing

Comments (0)

All The Boiling Point Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *