Home News Release OCNA Recognizes Loyalist Students and Graduates at Awards Ceremony

OCNA Recognizes Loyalist Students and Graduates at Awards Ceremony

May 08, 2008

Ontario Community Newspapers Association Recognizes Loyalist College Students and Graduates at Annual Awards Ceremony

The winners of the Ontario Community Newspaper Association’s (OCNA) 2007 Annual Awards have been announced and Loyalist students and graduates received top honours for their photography and writing skills. The Pioneer, the College’s community newspaper, was awarded third place in General Excellence. In the Student Feature category, first place went to Print Journalism graduate and current E-Journalism student Joel Wiebe. Barbara-Ann MacEachern, also a Print Journalism graduate and current E-Journalism student, placed third in Student Features. The top three spots in the Student Photography category went to Photojournalism graduate Vance Lester, and Photojournalism students Daniel Hayduk and Daria Perevezentsev.

“Feature writing is my passion, so it feels really good to be recognized for what I love to do,” said Joel Wiebe. “It’s one thing to hear feedback from teachers and friends, but to have the judges for the OCNA select my piece as first-place, it is truly special. My article was about the managed forest tax incentive. Under the program, those who submitted a long-term plan for their forest were able to receive a significant reduction in taxes for their forested areas. I spent the better part of a day walking the woods with a nice gentleman who maintains his 200+ acres under the management program for the purposes of wildlife, walking and tractor trails, and firewood. I also spent a day with a logger in Northbrook, who doesn’t use the tax incentive for convenience reasons, but stressed good forestry management and how loggers are often labeled as the enemies of conservation. I also shot my own photos for the layout. Loyalist’s Print Journalism program is great. The teachers are very knowledgeable, helpful, and approachable. A wide range of skills are taught, allowing students to focus on their particular area of interest while getting the general skills they need for a newsroom environment. It is a lot of information to pack into two years, which can get overwhelming at times, but in the end it left me feeling fully prepared for the workforce.”

Jane Harrison, Acting Dean of Media Studies, expressed the College’s pride in the students, graduates and faculty who have earned this special recognition. “Our Journalism programs have always had a very strong presence at the OCNA Awards and this year was no exception. To receive awards in the writing, photography and newspaper categories is testimony to the excellence of these programs. This recognition at the provincial level reinforces our belief that we are leaders in media education and strengthens our conviction in continuing to pursue excellence in the field of journalism.”

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Media Contact:  Marilyn Warren, Communications, Loyalist College (613) 969-1913, ext. 2332; e-mail:  or Jane Harrison, ext. 2437