Sunday, October 26, 2008
We had an opportunity for some really good work on this issue. There were stories with potentially great headlines, graphics and photos. We missed them. Examples: crime story graphics; WiFi headlines with AirHog and stuff; WiFi photos of students online like in Mesquite Groove; Focus on Us photos could have been much better. But, we had some good stories with decent leads and we made it, sort of. In addition, the design on pi was solid and the back page feature page was "interesting" with good cutouts (for the most part)and two very good stories by our sports guys - JC and Jaime. Well, let's see. Page 1, good. Page 2, decent. Page 3, average. Page 4, average. Page 5, weak. Page 6, average. Page 7, good. Page 8, better than good but not great. Overall, a good performance. Some notable work on this issue includes,of course, Jaime's and JC's stories on the feature and sports pages. Also of note are the sports photos of Noe Longoria, the column by newcomer Nndy Oheri, the editorial on dorm security by Sabrina and the Ol' Smoky story by Arty. By the way, let's be consistent. Is it Smokey or Smoky? Now, some bad points. On page 2, our photos were horrible. They are too dark. I can't see the Ol' Smoky and the Hogs are too dark on Focus on Us. Chupi and the Blotter carry the page. Campus News pages are laden with campus stories...good job! Nothing spectacular, but all very functional. Even the bees look good. Sports was its usual solid self. However, I don't like the "lineup" photo of our Hall of Famers. we can much, much better and here is an incident when a mug shot would have actually been preferred. Oh well. They look like someone is trying to identify them for a theft or murder. Ha. Now, for KUDOs. In spite of some little discrepancies, this is still a solid edition. When looking at it as a whole, I see pi and feature layout had some thought but into them. Angela took over this duty last week and she did well. For that effort, she gets KUDOs. She's in the pot for the $100 scholarship at our "-15- Party." Congratulations.
This was a solid Homecoming Issue, complete with the happy photo of the King and Queen on the front page, the color photo spread on page 6, something for the alumni on the bonfire and the old flag with old Porky emblem on pi, the alumni luncheon on page 2, and a solid game story on page 5. Well done. Juan Carlos, you did a good job of coordinating this coverage and it shows. Angela and photo staff, good job of selecting different and varied pictures on photo spread. Angel, while this was excellent, it still needs to follow photo spread format we learned in design class and which you used to tackle easily two years ago. Please try to conform to traditional photo spread layout in the future. Okay? But, nice work. Really. And, photo staff - Kiki et. al. - very nice work on a dark and steamy night. Ha. What else was good about this issue? First, the teaser was excellent with QB Billy Garza running toward the head line on a screen of a gridiron (football field) in the background. Nice cutout and you identified who he was. The Bonfire story by Savannah was very functional. The King and Queen story need more detail but it was all there. The rec center story was solid. Well done, Arty. Page 2 was okay. The "Blotter" is all the rage on campus. Page 3 had a good parking makeover story by Patricia Reiss. The map did not work, however, because of the color that was lacking. We did not plan this page well. Carpooling story was solid. Good job, Erika. Erika, you need to be part of the staff. Come and spend some time with us. The Ed-Ops page may have been one of our best. The cartoon by Jeremy was award-quality at any level. Jaime's column, too, is of award-quality. The Analysis is well done, but with few exceptions. Good job, Kristie and Adriana (I think). Kiki's column finally made it. It was done in manner that would not lead to libel but it was controversial for sure. It is important to note that before we ran this column, our editor, Juan Carlos Reyes, had to verify that the complaints Kiki was writing about were true. He took the names of the students and their phone numbers down before it ran. The students did not want to reveal their names for fear of retribution. The column took courage to write, but it was not whiny and it spoke about inequities that need to be looked into at our dorms. The "bailout" editorial was also solid. Nice sports page. It's full of information and good photos, for a change. So, who gets KUDOs. Well, surprise, surprise. While this issue was a true "team effort" with everyone making sure Homecoming was covered from top to bottom, there were others who were busy helping our department, program and club look well. Amidst all the Homecoming hoopla, four students, make that five, rose to the occasion and helped prepare a Press Club float for the Homecoming Cavalcade. Press Club President Jaime Gonzalez's pickup truck was plastered with South Texans (a good use of our newspaper, ha) by Tania Garcia, LeAnna Fuentes, Adrian Trevino and Edwin Vasquez and it took third place in the Homecoming Cavalcade. This made our program visible. Many people said we should have won first place. Still, you all won first place in our hearts. Congratulations. So, Jaime, Tania, LeAnna, Adrian and Edwin, you get KUDOs for this week. Well done. You're in the pot for the Holiday "-15- Party" $100 scholarship.
Monday, October 13, 2008
This was a pretty solid issue. Good writing, decent photos, provocative opinions and heads-up sports. Well done! Starting with pi, the article on incoming president Steven Tallant by Patricia Reiss was well-written and the layout - although a little blue - had the nice graphic that helped explain the 90-day plan. Erika had a solid story on Hispanic voters and a good report on Dr. Goswami's speech. Tania's SGA coverage is the best we've had in recent years and she continues to improve. Thanks. And, Savannah wrote a solid story. Wow. Layoutwise, the blue screen on Tallant made it look like he was working at night....kind of worked, but? Also, the Aztec Indians should have been bigger. We misse a good chance to display this photo well. Of course, just for good measure, we still have the eggy weather section. Page 2 did better with the "Focus On Us" feature, but we still need a good solid photo here. The blotter is still a hit. The review was decent and the review on the Kingsville Symphony Concert very well done. Our reviews are getting stronger, guys and gals. Well done. As for Chupi, I'm starting to understand, I think. Campus News, Page 3, was excellent with the exception of not having a big photo at the top. It was a very newsy and the "Benchwarmers" story was probably the hit of the campus. Officially, they are now stars. The Ed/Ops page had a very nice analysis by Kristie on the campaign 2008. We need more of this and we can't let up now. We have to have this all the way to the election. The "Work-Study" editorial was solid and, more importantly, local. Local editorials and columns should be our priority on this page. Mary Beth's column on Sarah Palin was a nice change of pace. Layoutwise, nice big cartoon. Okay. But, the bug on Mary Beth's column is very weak. Make her name bigger and also center it. This type of mistake can stop us from winning a design award and is also very distracting. Not much else to say on Page 5 - Sports. Solid stories, good photos and good charitcle. Page 6 was a well-designed Homecoming page. I like the way someone added the week's events at the bottom. The photos also reproduced well, this time. A good effort by all. Thanks! As for KUDOS.....while the work was very good this week on the printed version, there were some interesting things going on with the online version of The South Texans that were just very exciting. Bob Pena and Serbrina Salinas have revamped the site. We have a webcast now and also PDFs of each issue. This took a lot of work. Go visit the site tamuk.edu/southtexan and see what all the fuss is about. For their efforts, Bob and Serbrina are in the pot. Well done. Thanks!
Finally, a newspaper with some politics. The Page 1 story on "A&M-Kingsville ready to vote" was heart-warming to see. The most important election of this generation's future is about to take place and it is our job and responsibility to inform the college student population of their options. Tania's article was perfect at this time and place. Also, we had two solid stories on pi with Kristie's "enrollment increase" story and Kiki's solid story on the "planet hunt." We even had a graphic on enrollment. Wow, who did that? Our weakness on pi continues to be weak photographs. Our writing is improving. Another weakness is our teaser. It seems unplanned. Of course, as long as it's "sunny and hot" we're going to have the fried egg symbols on our excellent 3-day weather forecast. Well, at least they get our attention. Page 2 is still developing. We are still developing our "Focus On Us." This should be the Chief Photographers No. 1 duty, after working with the page 2 designer. Here, we had photos of people's butts and backs. Not good. We can do better. The police blotter is assuming an identity of its own. Leanna Guerra, our cub reporter, is doing an excellent job. Well done Leanna. Thanks. Also, two solid stories by Patricia Reiss and Arty Maldonado. Patricia's story could have been a longer, but I understand we had space issues. Patricia also had a solid story on the India Culture event at Jones, on page 3. She has been a very pleasant addition to our staff and helps out on Monday during deadline. Tania continued to improve with the UPD story and Edwin added a solid story on "Savage in Limbo." Page 3 is full of campus news. That's good. What's lacking? Student features. Maybe Patricia, Edwin or Tania can keep this up. Page 4 is also full of campus news. Good stories by Amanda Marcum, Erika Hernandez (great lead) and Adrian Trevino. Adrian still needs work on news style, but he is getting there. Ed/Ops was pretty good. It still lacks planning and thus seems disorganized. JC had a solid column. Well done And, so did Adrian. Nice feature on Bayfest, We had a nice scene setting picture, but we used too many photos. I think we need to limit our use of photos to no more than 5 in a photo spread. Sports is solid again, but we still need two things from this are: bigger photos and more features. On the features, we have a winning team. Our students need to know the personalities who have helped us be successful. We also had a nice effort on the Spanish page. My one complaint is that it's not "newsy" enough. Also, the Senoirta Herencia Hispana story should have run somewhere in English. Well, it's time for KUDOs. With the work Tania has done recently and the work Adrian continues to do, along with the work of Leanna Guerra on the police blotter...these three cub reporters get the honor. Well done. You're in the pot for the $100. Thanks for your hard work.