FROM THE EDITOR: Awards put work in perspective

By ANDREW PAXTON

During the day-to-day grind involved in writing, editing and producing a college newspaper, it can sometimes be hard to keep the work we do in proper perspective.

The frenzy to keep up with breaking news, meet deadlines and succeed in other aspects of life can sometimes blur our judgment about what exactly we are trying to accomplish.

It often requires recognition from an external source to help us take stock of our situation, to see things with an “outsider’s eye,” so to speak.

When the Society of Professional Journalists recently recognized Aztec Press as a regional finalist for a Mark of Excellence Award, it helped us see how our work compares with that of our peers.

As it turns out, our results aren’t too shabby.

Aztec Press won the top SPJ regional award for student publications in 2009 and also earned a national finalist award.

The paper has been a Mark of Excellence award regional finalist every year since then.

I should also mention that we are now competing against the “big boys” in the SPJ contest, including universities with student populations over 10,000 strong.

The category for community colleges was eliminated a few years ago, but that hasn’t stopped us from being recognized as one of the best student publications in the Southwest.

The feedback the paper receives, whether it is from students, employees or other journalists, is almost always positive.

Multiple people have told me that the paper continues to improve and provide the type of coverage for which they are looking.

Our staff works to advance our journalistic prowess as we deliver the news, entertainment and sports reporting that you expect from your college paper.

Every two weeks, our goal is to bring you a better newspaper than the issue before. We continue to strive for improvement. After all, none of us is perfect.

If you have an idea for how we can expand, let us know.

Tell us what we can do to make Aztec Press even better, so we can continue to provide the type of coverage our readers expect and deserve.

If we happen to win more awards along the way, so be it.

Enjoy the issue.

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Filed Under: Opinion

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