December 5, 2015, 3:00a.m. – A STUDENT publication in Bataan dominated the first UST National Campus Journalism Awards (UNCJA), winning prizes in two out of three categories.

The Defender, the official student publication of Bataan Peninsula State University-Balanga, was cited for “Ang Tagapangalaga ng Barangay Sta. Elena, Isang Pag-analisa sa Kasalukuyang Estado ng Mangrove Trees” and “Tactless Diction,” which were named best feature and best editorial, respectively.

“Ang Tagapangalaga” sought to open the eyes of its readers on the ecological importance of mangroves, while the editorial “Tactless Diction” criticized students who had opted to air their sentiments on university issues behind anonymous Facebook pages and posts.

The Flame, the official student publication of the UST Faculty of Arts and Letters, won the best in-depth news award for its entry “UST Bargains Tuition and Other Fees Increase; Artlets Expect Improved Facilities, Instruction.” The story provided a closer examination of the annual tuition increases imposed by UST.

The finalists for the best feature award were the entries “Tawag ng Kabanalan” by The Defender and “Justin Adriel Decastro: The Boy Who Cried Books” by the Flame. 

The finalists for the best editorial were “When Dressing the Blueprint” by Malasimbo of Bataan Peninsula State University-Dinalupihan, “Internal Gap” by The Stateans of Central Bicol State University of Agriculture, and “AB Stained?” by The Flame.

The best in-depth news finalists were “Successive Small Fires Alarm Students” by Atenews of the Ateneo de Davao University and “Dealing with Drugs” by the Benildean Press Corps of De La Salle College of St. Benilde.

UNCJA, supported by a grant from two-time Varsitarian editor in chief Julio Macaranas Jr., was established to recognize outstanding works in journalism at the university level. Macaranas, a retired Washington lawyer and legal editor, endowed the awards in honor of his late mother, Mercedes Macaranas, who taught him how to write.

The panel of judges was chaired by Christian Esguerra, ABS-CBN News Channel reporter and former Inquirer senior reporter. The members were Attorney Macaranas, ABS-CBN News senior reporter Willard Cheng, and journalism lecturer Felipe Salvosa.

The awards were given on the last day of the 17th Inkblots, the annual national campus journalism fellowship and conference sponsored by The Varsitarian. Kathryn Jedi V. Baylon


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