The Torch was recently recognized by the American Scholastic Press Association, one of many national organizations for college newspapers. The newspaper received perfect scores for content coverage and art, advertising and illustrations. It also had very high scores in editing and creativity, giving it a score of 965 out of a possible 1000 points.
Stephen Pasqualina, former Torch Editor-in-Chief said, “The fact that they got perfect scores on things like content coverage and close to a perfect score in editing shows that they have continued to put emphasis on the editorial side of the paper, which is difficult to maintain.”
Additionally, last semester, Graphics Coordinator Chris Lauto won an award from the Associate Collegiate Press for his work in illustrations and designs.
“It was gratifying because when I started as Editor-in-Chief, we put a major emphasis on design and graphics,” Pasqualina said. “It was nice to see that we were recognized by such a huge national organization like this.”
In content coverage, The Torch was graded on topics such as student interest, original material, investigative reporting and aspects of national and/or international news.
In the Art, Advertising, Illustrations category, the newspaper received perfect scores in photography, placing cutlines and captions and original artwork. Pasqualina also commended the Torch editors on a job well done because “there were big shoes to fill.”
“When I started…we wanted to create a standard that future editorial boards could use,” Pasqualina said.
“It’s good to see that they took that base and have fine-tuned things like Devil’s Advocate, their in-house ads, and the way they divide their sections.”
He noted, “It’s impressive that they have been able to build on something that was started last year and be recognized by a national organization like this one.”
He added that the current Editor-in-Chief, Gregory Leporati, has done a good job with keeping up with relevant issues on campus.
“Finding news on a college campus is not always the easiest thing especially when there’s no St. John’s CNN here, you got to go and find it yourself.”