Crusader keeps winning

Crusader earns All Kansas for the fourth year in a row


Crusader staff

For the fourth year in a row Crusader receives the All-Kansas award for spring and fall of 2021. Pictured left to right are Laura Gillespie, Brianna Rich, Jessica Madrigal, Dani Arellano and Seyun Park.

The annual Kansas Collegiate Media Awards are back in-person after being online via Zoom due to COVID-19 restrictions. Each year, Crusader takes home numerous awards and accolades in various categories such as photography, news story and even videography.

The event took place in the Drury Plaza Hotel Broadview located in Wichita. Every community college in Kansas is eligible to compete in the competition. Only three colleges, including Seward County Community College, were awarded “Gold” by receiving a score higher than 90. Kansas State University and Wichita State University also received similar rankings.

Reporter Jessica Madrigal had a really great experience. This was her first time attending the event, as well as her first semester in Crusader.

“I was not disappointed at all. I think it was a really good experience and I think anyone, including Melvin, should go next time,” Madrigal said. 

Editor Laura Gillespie also had a great experience. She recalled her favorite moment at the event with Madrigal.

“My favorite moment was sitting with Jessica and anxiously waiting to see if we won the All-Kansas for 2-Year Newspaper award,” Gillespie said. 

The Crusader Staff won All-Kansas, which Gillespie explained: “it’s basically like our state championship”. The event only gives out the award to a handful of schools each year.

All of the awards that Crusader News earned was from Spring and Fall of 2021. The Crusader spring and fall 2021 staff members are Brooke Katen, Dani Arellano, Victoria Martins, Ruby Thornton, Megan Berg, Kylie Regier, Reece Hay, William Swanson and Mauricio Gonzalez. Not pictured: Saskia Vogelzang, Mary Ramirez, Ana Brangioni, Gracie Gillespie, Brianna Rich, Andrea Espinoza, Monalisa Chakraborty, Maddie Garrison, Raven Staten, Maria Coronado, Destiny Vasquez, Logan Scruggs, Krisi Anderson and Brooklynn Bauer. (Photo Courtesy of Sue Sprenkle)

Both Gillespie and Megan Berg, the Crusader feature editor, were placed under the “Journalist of the Year” for two-year colleges. Berg was the second runner up and Gillespie was the first runner up.

Not only was the event about presenting awards but there were many activities that students could participate in. Brianna Rich, the photo editor for Crusader, had a fun time with the Photo Scavenger Hunt.

“There were two sessions for photographers. Not only did I get to meet a person from K-State, but I also got to take pictures of stuff I like. I got to edit them and receive advice on what I could do better on my pictures,” Rich said.

The second part of the Photo Scavenger Hunt was on Monday. The students went over their pictures, which included a photo of a stranger, lines, lights and shadows. Rich tied for third place with another student.

Crusader provides an opportunity for students to develop and improve their journalism skills. The Kansas Collegiate Media event allowed the hard work of the students to be recognized by other community colleges.

“Whenever you hear the awards, and especially if you enter your work, it’s a great feeling to sit there and wait anxiously. As soon as they call your name, you get to walk up to the podium and hold the award yourself. That’s a great feeling because, throughout this semester, I was doubting myself as a photographer but being able to hear how many awards I actually won, reassured me that I am not a terrible photographer,” Rich said.

The Crusader Staff continues to make their mark with a total of 72 individual awards. The news organization has won All-Kansas four straight years in a row. All of the awards earned by the Crusader Staff are listed and are based on content produced during the 2021 calendar year. 

Overall 2-year news team:

All Kansas and Gold award – Crusader News

Overall 2-year social media:

Gold Award – Crusader News

2-year Journalist of the Year:

First Runner Up: Laura Gillespie

Second Runner Up: Megan Berg

Audio Feature:

First: Dani Arellano, Reece Hay, Brooke Katen – Podcast Discover tips, survive your finals

Second: Dani Arellano, Victoria Martins – Podcast: Putting a ring on it

Third: Raven Staten, Krisi Anderson – Will summer 2021 smash social, emotional after-effects of COVID


First: Reece Hay – Shark Week

Second: Destiny Vasquez, Maria Coronado, Raven Staten – Style at no cost

Third: Video: Mary Ramirez – Spray Paint Art 

Honorable Mention: Raven Staten, Destiny Vasquez – Saints on Skates 

Honorable Mention: Mary Ramirez, Krisi Anderson – Nursing students help community 

Profile Writing:

First: Ana Brangioni – A Barbie on campus 

Honorable Mention: Dani Arellano – Quintero hope to make an impact

Feature Writing:

Second: Megan Berg – Inside the artist’s mind

Third: Dani Arellano – Aqua aerobics is more than a class

Honorable Mention: Megan Berg – All ink tells a story 

Breaking News Writing:

First: Ana Brangioni, Mauricio Juan Gonzalez – SCCC cafeteria offers self-service options; first time since COVID

Honorable Mention: Ana Brangioni, Dani Arellano – SCCC encourages to follow current COVID protocols 

Spot/Event News Writing:

First: Brooke Katen – Campus goes maskless

Second: Maria Coronado – American Dream, Promise Act sparks hope for DACA recipients 

Honorable Mention: Laura Gillespie – Artist share personal identity through performance 

Honorable Mention: Maria Coronado, Raven Staten – Black history month sparks conversations about advocacy, BLM 

Column Writing:

Third: Raven Staten – Healthy Mindset = Healthy Semester 

Honorable Mention: Juan Mauricio Gonzalez – Don’t let Black Friday terrorize you like it did me

Editorial Writing:

Honorable Mention: Krisi Anderson, Crusader Staff – Opinion: Remote learning ruins snow days 

Review Writing:

Second: Maria Coronado – Godzilla vs Kong 

Third: Crusader Staff – Nutrition Cave

Honorable Mention: Destiny Vasquez – Reviewing the Revue

Sports News/Game Writing:

Honorable Mention: William Swanson – Men’s basketball gets 3 game suspension 

Photography – News/Event:

Second Place: Dani Arellano – Winner of Vocal Concert

Third Place: Brianna Rich – Open Mic Night 

Honorable Mention: Victoria Martins – CNA Classes

Honorable Mention:  Victoria Martins – Ice Skating 

Photography – Gallery/Essay:

First: Lois Magner – Photo Essay: A day in the life of a dementia patient 

Second: Brooklyn Bauer: Photo Gallery – Pioneer Days’ PRCA rodeo brings in stars 

Third: Lois Magner, Zane McCargish, Brooke Wasoski – Reviewing the Revue

Honorable Mention: Megan Berg – Hays takes the heat two years in a row 

Honorable Mention: Brianna Rich – Students move into the SLC, settle into college life

Photography – Portrait:

First: Brianna Rich – Up Close: Abel Ochoa 

Third: Mary Ramirez – Thanksgiving: Rubalcaba 

Photography – Feature:

First: Brooklynn Bauer – Homework stress

Second: Brianna Rich – Baker Arts Center

Third: Juan Mauricio Gonzalez – Pool Tournament 

Honorable Mention: Maria Coronado – Spooky

Honorable Mention: Brianna Rich – Ripping Mask Sign 

Photography – Sports:

First: Saskia Vogelzang – Saints basketball beats Beavers

Honorable Mention: Brooklyn Bauer – Pioneer Days: Bronc Busting


First: Laura Gillespie – Taco Truck Map 

Second: Laura Gillespie, Saskia Vogelzang, Mary Ramirez – COVID timeline

Third: Saskia Vogelzang –What’s your waste stream?

Honorable Mention: Andrea Espinoza – How to transfer

Social Media Reporting Series:

First: Reece Hay: Shark Week 

Second: Crusader Staff – Finals Week Parodies- TikTok

Third: Destiny Vasquez – Grad Confessions 

Honorable Mention: Juan Mauricio Gonzalez: New president SCCC

Social Media Single Post:

Third: Krisi Anderson, Destiny Vasquez – Did you know? 

Honorable Mention: Megan Berg – Open Mic Night 

Multimedia News Story:

First: Brooke Katen, Brianna Rich, Laura Gillespie – Campus goes maskless

Second: Krisi Anderson, Mary Ramirez, Destiny Vasquez – Nursing students help community 

Third: Destiny Vasquez, Crusader Staff – Saints on Skates

Honorable Mention: Brianna Rich, Megan Berg, Laura Gillespie – Artists share personal identity through performance 

Honorable Mention: Laura Gillespie, Juan Mauricio Gonzalez, Brianna Rich – SCCC welcomes 12th president 

Multimedia Feature Story:

First: Laura Gillespie, Crusader Staff: Taco Truck Tour 

Second: Brianna Rich, Megan Berg – Gross! Or is it?

Third: Destiny Vasquez, Crusader Staff – Style to no cost

Honorable Mention: Monalisa Chakraborty, Destiny Vasquez – International student beam, glow at SCCC

Honorable Mention: Megan Berg – Art show displays student work 

Multimedia Sports Story:

First: Brooke Katen, Juan Mauricio Gonzalez, Laura Gillespie – SCCC protects student-athletes in high heat conditions

Second: William Swanson, Logan Scruggs, Mary Ramirez – Men’s basketball gets 3 game suspension