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Loyola University New Orleans students win inaugural awards from the Catholic Press Association

Loyola press release - June 9, 2016

Loyola University New Orleans journalism students writing for the university's award-winning 93-year-old newspaper received inaugural awards from the Catholic Press Association on Saturday. The Catholic Press Association of the United States and Canada recognized Loyola University students Samantha Eroch and Karla Rosas in the association’s first Student Awards Program for their work in writing and visual design. Winners were announced at the annual Catholic Media Conference on Saturday, June 3 in St. Louis.

"The work of these young communication professionals shows that the time-honored ethics and standards of good journalism are being taught in our Catholic universities today," said CPA President Matt Schiller, business manager for Catholic New York newspaper, in announcing the winners. "We are proud of their accomplishment and delighted to spotlight their good work and the universities that are helping them become the next generation of journalists and communication professionals."

The judges awarded a First Place to Samantha Eroche, who now attends the University of New Orleans, for her article published in Loyola's prizewinning student newspaper The Maroon, "Newly declared martyr has connection to Loyola." They noted that an "excellent quote from (Director of Loyola Institute of Ministry Thomas Ryan" was used to "make the article relevant/interesting in 2015," and that Eroche "writes very well." Her prize-winning article centered around a Feb. 3 announcement by Pope Francis that San Salvador's Archbishop Oscar Romero was "killed in hatred of the faith, making him a martyr and initiating his sainthood process."

The so-called "Peace Quad" at Loyola is named for eight Jesuit martyrs assassinated in El Salvador in 1989, including Romero, an important figure in Central American history. November 2014 marked the 25th anniversary of the martyrs’ deaths and the 40-year-old Loyola University Community Action Program sponsored "Martyrs Week 2014: 25 Years Later," a week of education, service and justice activities on campus.

Karla Rosas, who graduated from Loyola in May, was awarded a second place in the Graphic Art or Photograph category for "Inside Your Election," also published in The Maroon and described by the judges as a "fun, creative and nostalgic political cover with a local twist. Combination of headline and art makes illustration instantly relevant to reader."

Rosas' prize-winning illustration, which appeared on the cover of the March 13, 2015 issue of The Maroon, spotlighted upcoming Student Government elections at Loyola. Wearing red-white-and-blue "Uncle Sam Garb" Loyola’s mascot wolf Havoc appeared beneath the words "Inside the Election."

Journalism students at Loyola are fresh off a record-breaking year for the School of Mass Communication, in which The Maroon racked up a whopping 87 awards, including a national Pacemaker Award from the Associated College Press. The nation’s top award in student journalism is often referred to as "the Pulitzer Prize of College Journalism."

Also this weekend, Associate Director of Mission and Ministry Alex Mikulich won a national award from the CPA for Best Essay.

The Catholic Press Association of the United States and Canada serves the professional development and spiritual growth of its members. Its 225 member publications have a combined print circulation of approximately 10 million subscribers, with many more accessing content through digital channels.