Journalism students shine brightly at awards night


Sheridan had rolled out the red carpet for Journalists!
Sheridan had rolled out the red carpet for Journalists!

Last Monday, the Sheridan Journalism Awards Night celebrated students in the Print-Journalism, New Media and Broadcast programs at Trafalgar Campus in  Macdonald-Heaslip Hall.

Students, along with friends and family, arrived around 7 p.m. Inside, they either enjoyed the food and drinks being offered by the college, or caught with fellow students on what’s been occurring in their lives, such as placements.

“It’s really nice to see all our graduating students,” said Cheryl Vallender, Journalism program coordinator. “They are there to celebrate their accomplishments for the year.”

Past grads are invited by their programs to hand out awards. However, they must be working in the industry.

Then at 8, the actual awards show began. Hosted by Nasr Ahmed and Diana Petcurri, the show not only was just handing out awards, but the audience got to see past Sheridan students speak about their experiences and what they are doing now, such as Stephanie Caramanico, now a broadcaster at Rogers TV and Daniela Rupolo from CBC. Some couldn’t make it to the show, so they aired live from their current locations, such as Mark Perri, now a producer at Bloomberg TV.

“Sheridan College is a great school,” Perri said in his video. “The programs here are so well-rounded. You truly do learn all the different aspects of storytelling while here and that is a direct result of the great teachers and staff that you have here to support you.”

Past graduates didn’t hand out the Shaw awards for Print and New Media. Instead, coordinators Sherine Mansour and Kathy Muldoon handed them out.

“As we mentioned of top of the show, this is the last year for the Print program,” said Petcurri. “It began in 1970, graduated thousands of students who are working as writers, editors or photographers at papers, magazines, websites, marketing and public relation firms around the country.”

This was also the last year for Broadcast. “Journalism Broadcast was launched in 2006,” said Ahmed, “had its first graduating class in the spring of ‘08. And as you already heard, tonight, its grads are making a big impact on the media industry.”

The reason for this is because Print and Broadcast are being merged together to make a big program. Because of this, videos paid tribute to the programs over the years.

This year’s winners are:
  • Best Multi-Media Project: Cate Racher
  • Best Multi-Media Producer: Quintin Bignell
  • Best Digital Project: Jana Gregorio
  • Best Radio Feature: Kavya Yoganthan
  • Best Documentary: Muluba Habanyama, Herrman Kaur and Tarlq Mashal
  • Best Print Feature: Brittany Preocanin
  • Best Writer New Media: Anthony Virgillio
  • Best Broadcast Writer: Max August
  • Best Reporter Print: Erin Queenan
  • Best Broadcast Reporter: Krystal des Vignes
  • Best Reporter New Media: Amanda Biffins
  • Best Broadcast Host: Kavya Yoganthan
  • Best Photographer: Elise Morton
  • Best Video Editor New Media: Sarah Claydon
  • Best Video Editor Broadcast: Gaston Calzato
  • Sheridan Sun MVP: Greg Lowenthal
  • People’s Choice: Tegan Versolatto
  • Fan Favourite: Brendan Saunders
  • Shaw New Media: Amanda Weldon
  • Shaw Broadcast: Kyle Johnston
  • Shaw Print: Courtney Blok

“When they called my name I was really excited and nervous because I didn’t know what to say,” said Brittany Preocanin, who won the Print Feature award, in an email.

All through the show, the winners got to address the audience, giving a speech about themselves and thanking the others that supported them along the way. Some speeches include:

“I can’t believe this is happening right now,” said Sarah Claydon in the place of Anthony Virgillio, who won the Best Writer New Media award, “Anthony is in the loo. It’s a fat mic drop up here.” This was followed up by Virgillio taking the stage during Claydon’s speech when she won the Best Video New Media award, and saying, “As a women, it meant a lot to me.”

“It’s cool I have my name on here,” said Gaston Calztato, who won the Best Video Editor Broadcast award, “but it goes out to all my classmates. Couldn’t have done it without you guys. You guys are the driving force behind all this.”

“I would like to thank Kathy first of all, for giving me the ticket to come here” said Greg Lowenthal, who won the Sheridan Sun MVP award, “Because, well, I wanted to go, but at the same time, I’m like, ‘Well, it’s Kathy, I like her, she was really awesome’ and I want to thank her again for allowing me to come here and for allowing me to be in this program and encouraging me to do all the hard work I done. I would also like to thank my mom, who right now is stuck at work teaching class, my dad who unfortunately died at the beginning of the semester. This is for you, dad.”

Students competing for awards submitted their best works to faculty before the show. Faculty reviewed the work and then chose the winner through a vote.

“I entered my story for the best feature story award by using the server at the school and uploading my story about pant sizing. I wasn’t sure who else applied for the award so I didn’t know who could have won it,” said Preocanin.

This event was streamed live on Sheridan TV, and can be found on YouTube. There was also a live blog for people to follow along with the event.

“I would love to present at another award ceremony after starting my career and providing some insight to new graduates who may be nervous or unsure of where to go after school,” Preocanin added.



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