Fall 2018 National JEA/NSPA High School Journalism Convention – Chicago, Illinois


A group of Omaha South students in Chicago for the JEA/NSPA convention.

The annual JEA/NSPA Convention in Chicago last week (Nov. 1-4) had 6,366 attendees from 695 schools representing 45 states, Canada, England and China.  Nineteen of these schools were from Nebraska, including Bellevue East, Fremont, Lexington, Hastings, Lincoln North Star, Lincoln Southwest, Marian, Mount Michael, Omaha Benson, Bryan, Burke, Central, North and South, Millard North, Millard South, Millard West, North Platte and Papillion-La Vista South.


The NSPA sponsors a Best of Show contest, allowing any school to enter that has advisers or students in attendance at the convention.  Giant congratulations to members of the Omaha Bryan High School Orator staff, as they earned an 8th place finish in the Best of Show category for the Newspaper Tabloids with 16 or fewer pages and to members of the Lexington Minuteman Yearbook staff, as they earned a 9th place finish in the Best of Show category for Yearbooks with 232 or fewer pages.  Full results of the Best of Show Contest from Chicago can be found here: http://studentpress.org/nspa/chicago-best-of-show-results/


The NSPA also sponsors a Picture of the Year, Story of the Year, and Design of the Year contest (among others).  Individual works of NSPA members are submitted in June and then judged over the summer with finalists announced before the convention. In the Sports Reaction division of the Picture of the Year, Omaha Marian’s Audrey Yost earned a 1st Place finish.  In the Yearbook Spread Design division, Millard West’s Annaliese Punt earned a 4th Place finish and in the Illustration division, Millard West’s Jack Ward earned an Honorable Mention.


The Millard West Catalyst was honored as a Pacemaker Finalist.  This is one of the highest honors a scholastic publication can achieve. Congratulations to the staff and to Mr. Mark Hilburn, the adviser.


In the JEA Write Off Contest, there were 2,033 competitors. In the end, 431 students were recognized with Honorable Mention Awards, 239 were recognized with Excellent Awards and 141 students were honored with Superior Awards.  Nebraska had 40 winners!


Lincoln Southwest High School

Haley Ulrich – Superior in YB Copy/Caption: Student Life

Emily Roberts – Honorable Mention in YB Copy/Caption: Academics


Marian High School

Emma Williams  – Excellent in Literary Magazine Layout

Alida Farrens  – Excellent in Literary Magazine Photography

Caroline Drew  – Excellent in Graphic Design Infographics

Joey Carollo – Excellent in Portrait Photography

Taylor Sterba  – Honorable Mention in Feature Writing

Lily Blake  – Honorable Mention in Review Writing

Maria Piperis  – Honorable Mention in Editorial Cartooning

Qwynn Watts  – Honorable Mention in Graphic Design Photo Illustration

Daisy Owen  – Honorable Mention in Sports Action Photography

Maya Reed  – Honorable Mention in First Year Photography


Mount Michael Benedictine High School

Jacob Gathje  – Superior in Sports Writing

Bokai “Kevin” Zhang  – Superior in Editorial Cartooning

Cole Kalkowski  – Superior in Newspaper Layout

Alex Schrier – Honorable Mention in Newspaper Editing

Kolton Koubsky – Honorable Mention Feature Writing


Millard North High School

Lucy Tu – Superior in Commentary Writing

Felicia Xiong – Excellent in Editorial Writing

Rachel Holt – Honorable Mention in Sports Writing

Kirsten Wandrey – Honorable Mention in Review Writing

Sireen Abayazid – Honorable Mention in YB Copy/Caption: Student Life


Millard South High School

Lindsey Assman – Excellent in Feature Writing


Millard West High School

Gabriel Paredes Reyes & Kaitlyn Willard – Superior in Broadcast Feature Story

Skyler Hoffner- Honorable Mention in YB Copy/Caption: Student Life

Bailey Christensen – Honorable Mention in Themed Photography

Delaney Aikins – Excellent in Portrait Photography

Lindsey Nelson – Honorable Mention in YB Copy/Caption: Sports


Omaha Benson High School
Johoro Hussein – Honorable Mention in YB Layout: Theme


Omaha Bryan High School

Adriana Martinez – Superior in Review Writing

Richard O’Connor – Superior in First Year Photography

Jayden Jacobs – Honorable Mention in Editorial Cartooning

Olivia Rickley – Excellent in YB Copy/Caption: Academics


Omaha Central High School

Molly Ashford – Superior in Review Writing

Ari Saltzman – Honorable Mention in Sports Writing

Emma Whaley – Honorable Mention in Commentary Writing

Dillon Galloway – Honorable Mention in Literary Magazine: Photography


Omaha North High Magnet

Kylie Hughes – Honorable Mention in Sports Writing

Nathaniel Smith – Honorable Mention in Portrait Photography


Papillion-La Vista South High School

Kala Sullivan – Excellent – Press Law & Ethics


Full Write Off results can be found here: http://jea.org/wp/blog/2018/11/03/fall-2018-write-offs-results/?fbclid=IwAR1lkqapJO8OZACKqQWuwiFpL-wKG2pjnZKC_rP9R5whdfM1iEyNyCZiUVM


North Platte adviser Lori Larson was recognized as a Rising Star at the JEA/NSPA Adviser Awards Luncheon in Chicago.  Congratulations!

North Platte Adviser Lori Larson holds her JEA Rising Star Adviser Award in Chicago.