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The Maroon staffers draw five nominations for New Orleans Press Club Awards

June 26, 2009

Four journalism students and one 2009 Loyola University New Orleans graduate were nominated for the 51st Annual Press Club of New Orleans Journalism Awards competition. The nominations were revealed at the Press Club’s annual meeting Tuesday night.

The students were all 2008-2009 staffers of Loyola’s student newspaper, The Maroon. Work they completed last year will compete with that of professional journalists in the New Orleans area.

The Loyola nominees, and the categories for which they are nominated, are:

· Jessica Williams, Print Investigative, for “WFF Pay ‘just isn’t enough’”

· Tom Macom, Print Illustration, for “Immobilized”

· Ramon Antonio Vargas, Sports Column, for “Rack ‘Em, Pack ‘Em”

· Rachel Strassel, Feature Photo, for “Mardi Gras Mambo”

· Andrea Castillo, Sports Feature Photo, for “Down, Not Out”

Vargas, who graduated summa cum laude from the School of Mass Communication in May, was also nominated three times for articles he wrote while employed with The Times-Picayune during his senior year. WWL-TV Executive Producer Dominic Massa, WDSU-TV reporter Travers Mackel, journalism instructor Les East and New Orleans Magazine writer Nicole Wroten, all alumni of The Maroon, were nominated as well.

Mike Giusti, faculty adviser for The Maroon, said the award nominations are not a surprise.

“The Press Club nominations are always such an honor. It is one of the premiere contests in which we compete,” Giusti said. “Unlike many of the other contests throughout the year, this one allows us to compete against full-time professionals who write for The Times-Picayune, Gambit and CityBusiness. We are the only Louisiana university that competes at this level, and that is such a testament to the hard work and quality journalism The Maroon produces week in and week out.”

Winners will be announced at the Press Club awards banquet on Saturday, July 18, hosted by CNN anchorwoman Kyra Phillips. For more information on the Press Club, visit http://www.pressclubneworleans.org/. To learn more about the School of Mass Communication in the College of Social Sciences, contact Catherine Koppel at 504-861-5448 or ckoppel@loyno.edu.

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