The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

The student news site of Edwardsville High School

Tiger Times

EHS Journalism Students Dominate SISPA Awards

Both journalism classes and the yearbook staff competed at Southern Illinios School Press Association’s competition in Carbondale and walked away with 40 awards.
Reyez Hangsleben
Opinion editor Sami McKenney receives an award at the SISPA Winter Conference closing session. McKenney was one of many journalism and yearbook students who were recognized for both submitted entries and on-site contest work.

The publication staff’s hands were fully numb from clapping at the end of the Southern Illinois School Press Association competition on Wednesday. 

After placing in 40 journalistic events, the EHS yearbook and claw staff went home with 20 first-place awards. 

“It was incredibly rewarding watching everyone go up and grab their awards for pieces of work they put so much effort in,” senior Pera Onal, newspaper editor-in-chief, said. “It definitely got a little emotional.”

After a series of on-site competitions, nine journalism students went home with awards, six of those being first-place finishes. 

“The on-site session was a lot different than just writing a Claw piece at home,” senior Georgia Gaughan, newspaper student-life editor, said. “Between the time restrictions and limited resources, there was definitely a lot more pressure on this.” 

Gaughan competed in Feature Writing at the SISPA on-site competition but received accolades for Alternative Story Telling, News Story and Best Editorial. Although students were able to compete at the site itself, editors and advisers of both publications were able to nominate previously published stories, designs and photos. 

“Even though I wasn’t able to be there, it felt nice to be recognized for pieces I had written previously,” Sydney Andrews said. 

Andrews had a clean sweep in both of her categories, News Story and Humor Column. 

After submitting two of her Claw pieces in the Humor Column, Andrews earned first and second place in the category, with a first-place finish alongside Gaughan in News Story Writing. 

“We all did really well,” senior Sydney Chong, yearbook managing editor, said. “I feel like the number of awards we won shows that.”



Best Web Adviser – Mrs. Thrun

Golden Dozen Award–2023 yearbook

Blue Banner – Print – 1st

Yearbook Club spread – Zach Kennett & Owen Anderson- 2nd

Student Life spread – Veda – 1st – Zach Kennett & Heloisa Passoni De Lima- 2nd

Academics spread- Veda Kommineni & Gia Pettus- 1st

Yearbooks Sports Copy – Zach Kennett- 2nd

Editorial Cartoon – Colleen M. Moore – 1st

Center Spread – Zach Cohn and Veda Kommineni- 1st

Front page – Sami McKenney – 1st

Sports Photo – Reyez Hangsleben- 2nd

Humor Column – Sydney Andrews- 1st – 2nd

Newspaper Feature – Colleen M. Moore- 1st

Sports Column – Zach Cohn – 3rd

Editorial – Georgia Gaughan- 2nd – Sami McKenney – 1st

Computer Graphic – Zach Kennett – 2nd

News Story – Sydney Andrews & Georgia Gaughan – 1st – Colleen M. Moore – 2nd

Art – Sydney Chong – 3rd – 1st

Review – Owen Anderson- 2nd – Zach Kennett- 1st

Sports News- Sami McKenney- 1st

Sports Feature – Veda Kommineni – 2nd – Pera Onal- 1st

Magazine Ad – Veda Kommineni- 2nd

Website Feature – Sami McKenney- 1st

Website Sports – Pera Onal- 2nd

Sports Feature – Zach Cohn – 2nd

Alternative Storytelling – Georgia Gaughan- 3rd


On Site Contests:

Editorial Cartoon – Sydney Chong – 1st

Yearbook Caption Writing – Logan Szymanski- 1st

Feature Writing- Georgia Gaughan- 3rd – Sami McKenney- 2nd

Editorial Writing- Alyssa Ragsdale – 1st

Infographic – Veda Kommineni- 1st

Photography – Reyez Hangsleben- 1st

Copy Editing – Julia Towell- 1st

Yearbook Sports Writing- Sean Henson – 3rd

Review Writing- Owen Anderson- 3rd

About the Contributor
Veda Kommineni
Veda Kommineni, Staff Writer
Veda Kommineni is a first-year journalism student but has spent three years on the yearbook staff. Outside of class, Veda plays varsity tennis for Edwardsville, does robotics, and is the editor-in-chief- of the yearbook. Her favorite classes have always been relating to literature, and she can't wait to pursue journalism.