Two GCPA conferences, one award finally

Dear readers, we’ve done it. The Bell Ringer at Augusta University has finally received a GCPA award.

It’s an award for the “Best Website” category in third place, after attending the 2017 Georgia College Press Association (GCPA) Conference during Feb. 10-11 at Mercer University in Macon, Ga.

The Georgia College Press Association recognizes the grand work of student-run newspapers from colleges and universities in Georgia. Between spring 2016 and spring 2017, I was present for the two GCPA conferences during the newspaper’s major transformation from mainly print to mainly online.

For The Bell Ringer, this particular award is its first and only award since spring 2015.

Of course, there is more to us than winning awards.

Despite being one of our astonishing achievements so far this year, we still have more improvements to be made. We want to be more recognizable on campus and we want readers to know that we still exist.

(L-R) Jacob Tomberlin, Jamie Sapp and  Sequoia Sinclair attended the 2017 GCPA Conference Feb. 10-11 at Mercer  University in Macon, Ga. (Courtesy of Todd Bennett)
(L-R) Jacob Tomberlin, Jamie Sapp and Sequoia Sinclair attended the 2017 GCPA Conference Feb. 10-11 at Mercer University in Macon, Ga. (Courtesy of Todd Bennett)

There are often times where people wonder what is The Bell Ringer, what is going on with the newspaper, or what can we do effectively as a newspaper organization for the university.

We want you to know that we are still here. The newspaper has existed for many decades at the university through different name changes, numerous GCPA awards, major transformations and all.

We also want a diverse group of student contributors, whether its news stories, columns, feature stories, photography, video, or illustration.

The staff consists of four writers with an adviser, however, we can only do so much as a small team.

Successes start with failures and that pushes us further into a better newspaper organization at AU.

It is always great to get numerous contributions from a diverse group of students. For example, we received contributions from students in communication, english and foreign languages, art, psychology and biology. Even staff members from the Phoenix Magazine have been involved with us, which is a student-run magazine at AU.

At the end of the day, we are here to report accurately on campus and local news. Sometimes it takes more individuals of various backgrounds to create a bigger, dependable team and get things done right.

For those that want to get involved with the newspaper, the magazine or both, all students are welcome to contribute to the both student-run publications on campus. However, do not take this opportunity only to make yourself appear good on a resume or portfolio. Do it for the experience.

Besides, journalism did not start with journalism or communication majors. In fact, the term “journalism” did not existed until the 1700s. Journalism began with great people of various backgrounds.

Successes start with failures and that pushes us further into a better newspaper organization at AU.

We finally got an award. Now let’s go back to work.

Sincerely,

Jamie Sapp

Editor-in-Chief

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