Ampersand wins Silver Crown

REBECCA CASTILLO | Contributed Photo
REBECCA CASTILLO | Contributed Photo

Webster University’s biannual magazine The Ampersand received the Silver Crown Award at this year’s Spring National College Media Convention in New York City.

The convention, held March 12 – 15, is hosted by the College Media Association. The Columbia Scholastic Press Awards (CSPA) recognizes Crown winners at a small ceremony during the convention.

The Crown Awards are given by the CSPA each year to recognize student excellence in print and digital publications.

Co-Editors-in-Chief Alison Klinghammer and Macy Salama, along with adjunct faculty adviser Karen Burch, were in attendance at the convention. Former Ampersand Editor-in-Chief Alex Wilking met the group in New York for the award ceremony.

“I am beyond proud and excited for what we have accomplished,” Salama said. “Especially since we are such a small staff. It’s good for them to know that all of their hard work is going to pay off in the end.”

The magazine competed against 13 other college-level magazines across the U.S. The Ampersand was the only publication to compete from Missouri. Other college magazines from the Midwest included three from the Chicago area – two from Columbia College and one from McHenry County College – and one from Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa.

Klinghammer was an Ampersand Staff Writer for the fall issue and Global Editor for the spring issue which were judged for the award.

The CSPA website says awards are judged at Columbia University in Manhattan by panels of invited judges, working in small groups to review each publication. This year, a total of 60 print magazines were judged on their “excellence in design, photography, concept, coverage and writing,” the website said.

“We were submitted in the print magazine category and notified beforehand that we were going to receive an award,” Klinghammer said.

The Crown Awards are judged following seasonal deadlines in June and October. Burch submits the magazine in June of the preceding year.

She said she wants to enter the Ampersand app, but CSPA award entry options are limited – there are few categories that are specific to digital-only magazine formats at the college-level.

“I was looking at the silver and gold awards and I saw entries that were ‘hybrid’ winners with both print and online editions. But, to be honest, I think we are actually ahead of that with the app,” Burch said.

The Ampersand app expands the content of each story that appears in the print edition of the magazine with interactive elements tailored to mobile users.

“Due to budget cuts, we went from 56 pages to 40, so that means we’ve had to trim everything. By doing this [the app], we’re able to keep the magazine where we want it to be,” Burch said.

Burch also said the digital-app version of the magazine is available to view on desktop computers by clicking a link on the Ampersand homepage.

“We’re hoping that the Pacemaker Awards and the CSPA will have an option for us with the app,” Burch said.

The Ampersand also won the Gold Crown Award for the 2013-2014 print editions last year.

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