Woodcrest Magazine wins CSPA gold medal

By Jeny Varughese
October 20, 2010

Woodcrest Magazine received a Gold Medalist Award from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association at Columbia University on Thursday, Oct. 7.

CSPA is a student scholastic press association linked to Columbia University’s School of Journalism.

“Submission for CSPA award was in spring 2010 and we have just now received notification of the award,” Dr. Seth Frechie, associate professor of English, said.

After receiving the Gold Circle Award, Woodcrest can now compete for the CSPA Crown Awards. It is the most competitive award in the country for student literary magazines.

Several colleges and universities were present for the contest including University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania and Temple University, according to Frechie.

Shannon Fandler, Mary Gunhein and Anthony Casazza won individual awards for their participation in the magazine as well. Winning the award was both a surprise and an honor for the Woodcrest Magazine team.

“I was really happy and honored to find out I came in second for my piece ‘I feel differently about my neighbor,’” Shannon Fandler, senior English major, said in a recent telephone interview. “Humor is very subjective and not everyone finds certain things to be funny so to be acknowledged for it meant a great deal to me.”

“This is a highly coveted award and it’s a great boost of confidence knowing that our hard work payed off,” Brittany Ryan, junior English and Spanish major, said.

“I was beyond thrilled when Woodcrest was awarded the Gold Medalist Award from Columbia,” Mary Gunheim, alumna ’10, said in a recent telephone interview. “Shannon and I spent our entire Spring Break in the computer lab putting the magazine together and being recognized on a national level for our efforts is a great honor.”

Student literary magazines are evaluated in the areas of organization, its content and design for the circle award. Some of the categories included in the magazine are prose fiction and narrative, prose nonfiction, poetry.

“The magazine was completely redesigned in preparation for the CSPA award submission and this is the first year that Woodcrest Magazine was entered,” Frechie said.

“The issue that we submitted represents a culmination of a complete revision not only of the magazine, its content, theme and design but also a revision and refinement of the creative writing program in the English department,” Frechie said.

The content of the magazine was from students of all departments of the magazine including English, math and science among others.

“I became a part of the magazine because I love reading, writing and editing” Ryan said. “I want to be a book editor someday and felt this is a great opportunity for me and took advantage of that chance.”

“It’s a huge honor to be a part of this magazine,” Katie Parks, junior English and Spanish major, said. “Being recognized by the CSPA is very prestigious and I’m very proud of what everyone who contributed has done.”

Dr. Seth Frechie, along with Parks and Ryan, will be traveling on Nov. 1 to the annual CSPA conference in New York City.

“This year we will launch a new Woodcrest website to compliment the department of English publications program and the website will be unveiled this coming spring,” Frechie said.

“Cabrini College is now a founding member of the Council of Student Literary Magazine Conference and has participated in three conferences thus far. I hope that Cabrini will be in a position to host the National Student Literary Magazine conference in the 2011-2012 academic year with the help of the Academic Administration,” Frechie said.

Jeny Varughese

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