Campus: CSU, Chico -- August 14, 2001

The Orion Wins Top General Excellence Award From CNPA Again

The Orion, California State University, Chico's student newspaper, received the first-place award for general excellence at the California Newspaper Publishers Association's 2000 Better Newspapers Contest awards ceremony on Saturday in Monterey.

The presentation marked the sixth time in seven years that The Orion has won the top award in CNPA's university division. No other university student newspaper has won the state's highest award more than three times.

"The CNPA award is without question the most important college newspaper honor in the state," said Orion adviser Dave Waddell. "Our almost total domination of this honor stretching back to the mid-'90s is beginning to amaze even me. It's a different set of professional judges every year."

The awards were handed out at CNPA's 113th annual convention at the Double Tree Monterey Hotel. Second place in the University Division went to the student paper at Santa Clara University.
The Orion submitted three consecutive issues from fall semester 2000, during which Randy Striegel was managing editor, James Nepomuceno was art director, and Scott Harris was business manager. Striegel is now a copyeditor for the Contra Costa Times.

All entries were initially judged by California publishers, editors, and reporters, who selected finalists in each category of competition. From there, a panel of blue-ribbon judges from newspapers outside California picked the first- and second-place finishers.

CNPA is a trade organization representing hundreds of California newspapers, from the smallest weeklies to the largest dailies, as well as scores of college newspapers.

The Orion, a laboratory newspaper of CSU, Chico's nationally accredited journalism department, has won dozens of national, regional, and state awards in recent years. Most recently, it won the Society of Professional Journalists' Mark of Excellence Award for Best All-Around Non-Daily Student Newspaper.

The society will honor The Orion as the nation's top college weekly at their national convention in Seattle in October.

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