Friday, September 25, 2009

From down on the farm, to art and a documentary on "The Wall" - Sept. 22 issue had plenty of good stuff and surprising KUDOs winner

The Sept. 22 edition had several good campus event stories and showed why it is important for The South Texan to report on campus events. The front page shows it all - teasers of the Hispanic Heritage kickoff on the teasers, an article on the coming documentary "The Wall" to our campus, a report on the Mayan art exhibit at the Ben Bailey Art Gallery to fun by the ag kids ant the farm. this was a very newsy front page. The inside pages had even more campus coverage. From that standpoint, this was a very good issue. Now, let's look at this issue page-by-page:

Page 1: Nice teasers, much better. Thanks. We do need, however, to identify, at least, what these people are doing. You need to say what the girls is chewing on (jalapenos), especially with the expression on her face. And you need to identify the girls all pretty all in a row. And, you need to tell the reader who the girl singing is. The story on "the Wall" was well done and a good effort by Angel Flores. It could have been better if the date and time would have been higher up on the story. Literacy summit story had great info and a was a solid story, but lead is too long. Why? Probably 'cause it was late and the editors did not have an opportunity to ask for a rewrite or even rewrite it themselves. Edwin's Mayan story was a bit better, but he subject matter made it confusing. The Ag Olympics story by Claudia was very functional and made for a good package. I think the photos could have been stronger, however. Also, please, PLEASE get names of people in the photos. I know, no one will read this. Finally, the TAMUK engineering story by mary beth had some great information that could be found no where else. Well done. Teasers at the bottom were better, but not great. We have to be able to see things. For this to happen, we must blow-up the photos. And, if we do that, like we did on Miss Hispanic Heritage, we have to identify who the person about that?

Page 2: This was a very busy page with several elements competing for attention. I'm not sure that Erika's column should have been the lead story. Erika's column is very solid. Is she serious? Only the women known. Hahahahahahahahahaaha! Angela's Cheech Marin story also had some good information. When we have material like this that no one else has, perhaps we should use a deck to inform the public. In fact, we should have used a deck. The UPD Files story is solid and well done. However, when we have a student robbed at knifepoint, it calls for a separate pull-out story. Why didn't we do this? And, who does this? The page editor. The page editor will call the reporter and say "Give me a story on this." Green Tip of the Week again very interesting. Good job Sabrina Salinas.

Page 3: Who is that handsome devil who spoke on Hispanic contributions to the U.S. media? Perhaps we should have run the photo larger? Ha. Just kidding! Page 3 could well be our best page. It's got beauty queens, kids dancing and ROTC cadets taking oaths. It's almost a slice of Americana. Problems? Yes. to begin with, we had another label head on "Celebrating Diez y Seis de Septiembre." Why? Tell me something in the headline. Something like: "More than 400 attend opening Hispanic Heritage event" would have been nice. And, the photo of the kids - poor crop. And, always show the dancers' feet! Claudia did well with this straight news story. Sabrina had an outstanding short story on Miss Hispanic Heritage. Not bad for her first real journalistic effort. Edwin, Katrina and our ROTC guys also had good stories. Nice page.

Page 4:
Some very provocative columns and editorial. However, this page still needs to be better organized and planned. Also, Claudia, please try to break up the gutter all the way down the page. Let's try to break this up with a story across the page or at the bottom. On the content, Angela Palacios had a very strong column on Dr. Hector P. Garcia. I certainly hope the powers that be at TAMUK read and heed her message. Carlos' "Customer Service" column also had some provocative moments and just barely escaped the whiney factor. It was nice, Carlos. The editorials should be together, not separate. They should be side-by-side of one on top of the other. Content wise, both editorial were solid. Cartoon was little weak but our resident journalism guru - Adriana Tapia Garza - saved it. Ask her how she did it. Well done!!!!

Page5: Sports guys did well to cover volleyball and cross country. Nice work on photos, Adriana Perez. Best thing here is the cross-eyed cat. Did we adopt it?

Page 6: Page 6 is typical sports page. Okay. Nice photo by Artie.

And, now, KUDOs. Who get's this prestigious student journalism award this week? There were many good candidates but we are going to give it to Claudia Garcia. Claudia's energy and passion to learn, take on challenging stories and just do whatever she can to help are contagious. Claudia, you get it this time and you deserve it. We are very proud of you. Now, it's time to tighten up your stories and editing and swing for the fences. Well done.