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University City High School Wins Big at the 2020 State Journalism Awards

University City High School Wins Big at the 2020 State Journalism Awards

By Nancy Cambria
Director of Communications

There’s a saying in newspapers that the news never stops - even during a pandemic. On March 25, 2020, while our community continued to practice social/physical distancing, dozens of University City High School students were recognized for their exceptional journalism via a virtual ceremony at the 51st annual Missouri Interscholastic Press Association Scholastic Journalism Day, also known as J-Day. It was the first time the ceremony was held virtually. 

Students representing the School District of University City picked up 32 state-level awards during the ceremony. The event was originally scheduled to be held at the University of Missouri-Columbia on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. A total of 1,525 students and teachers had planned to attend the ceremony at Mizzou prior to the school closings earlier this month due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Amid hundreds of submissions, UCHS led the pack in awards and even topped itself by being honored with nearly a dozen more awards than last year. Students worked plenty of off-school hours to create the best possible publications, making UCHS English/Journalism teacher Mary Williams very proud.  

“The students did exceptionally well this year at the statewide awards,” Williams said. “Typically, more than a thousand journalism students and teachers from all over the state attend. This year, I was able to gather students together in Zoom meetings and announce the awards to them. I also emailed parents to let them hear some good news from our school.” 

There are four rating categories in the journalism awards. They include All Missouri, Superior, Excellent, and Honorable Mention. Below is a list of our winners:


  • OVERALL YEARBOOK (2018-2019 edition): Alona Jenkins and Sierra Tyler, co-editors
  • Newspaper/Newsmagazine Newsmagazine Page Design (Today in Politics): Ian Feld and Eliot Fuller
  • Photo Sports Action (Soccer photo): Khloe' Fox 
  • Photo Student Life/Organization Yearbook (Orchestra class): Albert Smith 
  • Photo Student Life/Organization (Homecoming Parade): Isabel Blumenhorst 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package - (Women in Politics): Nacim Hassoun and Isabel Blumenhorst 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package--(ESOL): Nacim Houssan Isabel Blumenhorst and Nathan Hill 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package--Academics: Tia Moore and Nathan Hill (NAF All Missouri)


  • OVERALL NEWS MAGAZINE/NEWSPAPER: Eliot Fuller and Ian Feld, co-editors
  • Newspaper/News Magazine Feature Story: Kiya Furlow (New cell phone)
  • Newspaper/Newsmagazine Opinion/Editorial: Ian Feld (A vote for Costco) 
  • Photo Sports Action: Rashad Warren U-Times (HC football game) 
  • Photo Student Life/Organization: Grace Klein (Homecoming parade)
  • Photo Student Life/Organization: Marley Gardner (Fueled by the audience) 
  • Photo Student Life/Organization: Khloe Fox (Hype Squad photo)
  • Yearbook Traditional Package - Student Life: Marley Gardner, Khloe Fox and Isabel Blumenhorst (The Beast Within -- Fall Play)
  • Photo Student Life/Organization: Nacim Hassoun (Orchestra photo) 


  • Online Social Media Reporting: Eliot Fuller and Ian Feld (U-Times)
  • Photo Academic: Ella Chisholm (Homecoming cheerleader photo) 
  • Photo Academic: Nathan Hill Dial University City High School “Puzzling over a problem” 
  • Photo Sports Action: Nathan Hill U-Times (Homecoming) 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package - Sports: Julia Nelson, Ella Chrisholm and Isabel Blumenhorst (Boys Swim) 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package - Sports: John Ruland (XC)
  • Newspaper/News Magazine Feature Story: Grace Klein (High stress setting)


  • Yearbook Traditional Package - Sports: Marley Gardner and Nathan Hill (Softball) 
  • Yearbook Traditional Package - Student Life: Farah Thabet, Marley Gardner and Nathan Hill (Fashion) 
  • Newspaper/Newsmagazine Opinion/Editorial: Ian Feld and Eliot Fuller U-Times (No Weapons Allowed) 
  • Newspaper/Newsmagazine Opinion/Editorial: Marley Gardner (Trump's motives Honorable Mention) 
  • Newspaper/Newsmagazine Sports Story: Zion Smith (Lions prevail in Homecoming)
  • Online Breaking News Package: Tarren Harris U-Times (University City High School Students rise early for chance to be on the news)
  • Photo Sports Action: John Ruland (Waiting for the sharp shock)
  • Photo Student Life/Organization: Isabel Blumenhorst (Roberta Booth) 

J-Day is presented annually by the Missouri Interscholastic Press Association (MIPA). MIPA is a state organization working in association with Missouri School of Journalism, Journalism Educators Association, JEA; and the National Scholastic Press Association (NSPA)i. To learn more about MIPA, visit their website: To check out some of the highlights of Virtual J-Day on social media, just use the handle #JDay2020.