A Silver for Benedict News


Grant Parker

The Winter 2020 edition of The Benedict News, with a cover drawn by Grant Parker ’22, was part of the journalistic output that earned a Silver Medal for the staff of St. Benedict Prep’s Benedict News staff.

The Columbia Scholastic Press Association has awarded The Benedict News 2019-2020 a Silver Medal for its print and online versions. 

A panel of judges for the country’s most prestigious student journalism association lauded the publication’s high-quality news coverage, feature writing, hand-drawn illustrations, design, and photography.

The publication showcases “a good blend of article types and use of various media to enhance the article,” the judges wrote. “It very much feels like a community/school paper.”

The Benedict News last year was led by Editors-in-Chief Kevin Calle ‘20 and Jonathan Dulce ‘20. Calle is now a freshman at the New Jersey Institute of Technology and Dulce is a freshman at Rutgers University in Newark. The Editors-in-Chief for 2020-21, Reuben Kadushin SY and Sam Pineda SY, also played significant roles in last year’s production of print and online editions, serving as staff writers and producing major articles.

Last year’s editorial board also included: Chrisley Alexis ’20, Carlos Presina ’20, Anthony Mosquera ’22, Israel Small ’22, Rodney Fequiere ’20, Grant Parker ’22, Christian Browne-Mixon ’20, Paul Granizo ’20, Aidan Davis ’20 and Simon Ertle ’20. English Department Faculty Member Ms. Kitta MacPherson, the former long-time science editor for The Star-Ledger newspaper, served as faculty adviser while Br. Bruno Mello n-O.S.B. served as assistant adviser. 

“Given the extraordinary challenges our students faced last year — the death of beloved faculty members, the loss of several students’ family members, and then, the onset of the pandemic and the move to remote learning — our guys really held it together and produced important work,” Ms. MacPherson said. “I’m so proud of them.”

Coverage included the 74th birthday of SBP Headmaster Fr. Edwin Leahy,’63, O.S.B., teacher profiles that included a spread on History Teacher Mr. Richard Gallerani and his St. Benedict’s sculpture, stories from the Newark Abbey monastery and features on students and sports teams, and an online blog, “Going Viral,” that chronicled, with 20 entries, the vicissitudes of student experiences during the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) is an international student press association, founded in 1925. Its goal is to unite student journalists and faculty advisers at schools and colleges through educational conferences, idea exchanges, critiques, and an award program. CSPA is based at Columbia University and is affiliated with Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.

The CSPA was Columbia’s third initiative in journalism, following the founding of its School of Journalism in 1912 by bequest of the noted newspaper publisher, Joseph Pulitzer, and the awarding of the first Pulitzer Prizes by Columbia in 1917. Since 1925, more than 125,000 newspapers, magazines, and yearbooks have entered the annual critiques for evaluations and more than 340,000 delegates have attended the CSPA’s annual conventions, conferences and workshops.