NSPA, Quill and Scroll awards for BP

Jaclyn Kellner, Community Editor

In the past few weeks, The Boiling Point added six awards to its 2009-10 tally: a runner-up “Best in Show” award for its Special Edition on the lower schools closing, and five awards in Quill and Scroll’s International Writing and Photo Contest, judged by the American Society of Newspaper Editors.

The Best in Show award was given at the annual spring convention of the National Scholastic Press Association convention in Portland, Ore., April 15 -18, where 225 newspaper delegations attended three days of workshops and competed against one another with papers they brought with them to the conference.  Shalhevet won third place, out of 10 total awards given in the Special Edition Category.

Ten Boiling Point staff members, along with faculty advisor Mrs. Keene and history teacher Mr. Larry Mullin, attended the  NSPA event. While there they discovered a company called School Newspapers Online, and purchased their first-ever interactive website, www.shalhevetboilingpoint.com.

Quill and Scroll, the international honorary journalism society, received 2585 entries and gave 256 national awards this year in 12 categories. The Boiling Point has won something every year since 2007, but this year set a record.

The BP won one of only 16 national awards given for In-depth Team Coverage, for its stories last spring on the amount of class missed for assemblies. Editor-in-Chieff Lexi Gelb wrote the main story, Features Editor Rachel Lester reported on how other Jewish high schools handle similar observances, and junior Rachel Lesel and senior Talia Reich faced off in Two Boiling Points of View.

Lexi also won a National In-Depth Individual Reporting Award for her article on her experience in Sderot last summer. Zev Hurwitz, then Torah Editor, won a National Newswriting Award for his story on the dangers of catching swine flu by kissing mezuzot.

Junior Tziporah Thompson won the Boiling Point’s first-ever National Award for Editorial Cartoon for her humorous take on student IDs.  And Arts Editor Leila Miller won a national Feature Story award for her behind-the-scenes look at Shalhevet drama, “Prop lists and perfectionism: Taking A Shayna Maidel from the page to the stage.”

Faculty advisor Mrs. Joelle Keene was pleased with the results, but noted that there were many other stories the BP was proud of this year.  She mentioned Jenny Newman’s story on the U.N.’s Goldstone Report and Jaclyn Kellner’s coverage of changes in student internet access.

“Awards are kind of like college admissions — they’re always deserved, but they never seem like the whole story,” Mrs. Keene said. “But they always leave you with something to strive for.”

She noted that the BP has yet to win anything in the Photo or Sports categories, and added, “Next year!”