Peninsula, SF high school journalism programs win national awards 

A visit to two Bay Area high schools may convince some to rethink the notion that the journalism industry is fading.

San Francisco’s Lowell High School and Belmont’s Carlmont High School took home top honors last weekend at the spring 2014 National High School Journalism Convention in San Diego. The student-run news websites at the two schools were among the 14 recipients of the 2014 online Pacemaker award.

Widely considered the most coveted prize for high school journalism students, the Pacemaker award is presented by the National Scholastic Press Association.

Carlmont journalism adviser Justin Raisner, who launched the Peninsula school’s journalism program with 16 students, said he’s “overwhelmed” by the national recognition for a website that’s less than 5 years old and is now run by 85 students.

“Really it’s all about how the kids work so hard and put so much effort into it,” Raisner said. “It’s great to see them get rewarded for it.”

Samantha Yu, an adviser for Lowell’s student news publication, said she’s also proud of the students who helped contribute to the award-winning website, which was revamped earlier in the school year.

Both websites utilize multimedia platforms to publish content on a daily basis, including through videos and podcasts.

Pacemaker awards were also presented in magazine and yearbook categories at the conference.

“Since 1927, the Pacemaker has stood for the highest ideals of scholastic journalism,” said Diana Mitsu Klos, NSPA executive director. “Technologies, means of distribution and economic models continue to change dramatically, but the values of journalism endure with this group of rising leaders.”

About The Author

Laura Dudnick

Laura Dudnick, a Bay Area native, covers education and planning for The San Francisco Examiner. She previously worked as a senior local editor for, and as the San Mateo County bureau reporter and weekend editor for Bay City News Service.
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