Nebraska Students & Journalism Programs Have Strong Showing in Orlando at JEA/NSPA

Several Students Recognized in Write Off Competition

Marsha Kalkowski, JEA Liason

The following schools were represented among the 6,134+ attendees in Orlando, Florida at the JEA/NSPA National High School Journalism Convention, Nov. 11-15: Omaha Bryan, Omaha Central, Lincoln Pius X, Lincoln Southwest, Millard West, Mount Michael and Marian.

In Saturday’s NSPA (National Scholastic Press Association) Awards Ceremony, Omaha Westside, although not in attendance, was recognized for last year’s work with a Second Place finish by Jon Bass of Warrior Television-WTV in the 2015 Broadcast Feature Story of the Year contest.  In the 2015 Broadcast Sports Story of the Year, Connor Flairty of Warrior Television-WTV earned an Honorable Mention.  Congratulations to these students and to Broadcast Adviser, Matt Rasgorshek.  Matt also received public commendation at the JEA Board Meeting for his work on the JEA One Book promotion.  We are honored to have Matt with us in Nebraska as a master teacher.

Also at the NSPA Awards Ceremony, the Millard West team of Delaney Rannells and Kassidy Arena of the Paw Print earned Fifth Place in the 2015 Multimedia News Story of the Year and Kelsey O’Connell from Marian’s Crusader yearbook earned an Honorable Mention in 2015 Design of the Year – Photoillustration.

Nebraska was commended and thanked at the JEA Membership Meeting and at the State Director’s Meeting for joining the JEA Mentoring Program.  Mentor Bob Bair is now featured on the cover of the Mentoring Matters Newsletter.

The student newspapers of Omaha Central and Omaha Bryan were honored in the Best of Show Competition at the Orlando Convention.  Only schools with representation at the convention are eligible to enter this contest. Of the 471 entries, The Register of Central won Second Place in the Broadsheet category and members of the staff even fell out of their seats with excitement.  It was awesome to watch the spirit!   The Orator of Omaha Bryan won Fifth Place in the Tabloid Newspaper 16 pages or less category.  Congratulations!


In the individual National Student Write Off Competition, 21 Nebraska students were recognized:

Millard West Students:

Kamrin Baker, Editorial Writing – EXCELLENT

Omaha Central Students:

Natalie Nepper, Graphic Design: SUPERIOR

Ann Milroy, Portrait Photography – EXCELLENT

Sebastian Becerra, Yearbook Student Life Photography – EXCELLENT

Omaha Bryan Students:

Emily Pemble, Editorial Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Jasmin Jimenez, Feature Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Ian Jordan-Chowning, Editorial Cartooning – HONORABLE MENTION

Morgan Perez-Garcia, Newspaper Sports Photography – HONORABLE MENTION

Mount Michael Students:

Patrick Halpin, Sports Writing – SUPERIOR

Joe Budd, Commentary Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Daniel Jewell, Feature Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Ben Murray, Editorial Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Michael Ecker, Newswriting – HONORABLE MENTION

Marian Students

Ally Hermanek, Graphic Design: Photo Illustration  – SUPERIOR

Isabelle Swanson, Feature Writing – EXCELLENT

Kaitlin McKenna, Graphic Design: Advertising – HONORABLE MENTION

Hannah Johnson, Graphic Design: Infographics – HONORABLE MENTION

Makenzie Fuss, Graphic Design: Logo – HONORABLE MENTION

Molly Miller, Literary Magazine: Photography – HONORABLE MENTION

Noelle Pick, Commentary Writing – HONORABLE MENTION

Devon Gottsch, Review Writing – HONORABLE MENTION


Please forward to your administrators and district public relations representatives.  If you need more information on the National Write Off Contests, please check out