2021 Yearbook receives recognition


Arianna Westbrooks, Features Editor

The Joliet West High School 2021 Alpha Omega Yearbook staff received recognition in the Division 6 Illinois Journalism Education Association 2021 yearbook contest. The yearbooks were judged in eight categories including copy writing, sports coverage, photography, divider pages, graphics, layout and design, theme development, and coverage of the school year.

Joliet West came in 1st place for layout and design and 3rd place in graphics and sports coverage. They also received
honorable mentions for overall general excellence and overall coverage, copywriting, and photography.

The yearbook “More Than Meets the Eye’’ featured various spreads with pages ranging from sports coverage to “coping quaranteens.” This diversity stood out amongst various other yearbooks. The yearbook was one of five from Illinois inducted into the Walsworth Hall of Fame in November. Out of six divisions total Joliet West enrolled into Division 6 with +2,501 enrollments.

Despite only having 3 editors design the yearbook and restraints from hybrid and virtual learning, they still managed to pull through and receive recognition for their hard work and dedication.

Yearbook advisor Jennifer Galloy said, “There were times we felt defeated by this particular book, the circumstances were not ideal but we all did our part to make it happen. I’m proud of these former editors and the legacy they have left behind. I’m currently in a rebuilding phase with new staff members, so we have some big shoes to fill but I’m confident that we will get there.”

Due to a virtual school year and a lack of usual in person photos, the editors; Louie Mendoza, Kelly Rappaport, and Kiersten Jordan had to get creative and take a different approach to designing the yearbook. As a result of this, the overall design differed greatly from previous years.

The cancellations and regulations from the pandemic made it difficult for the staff to achieve their deadline goals. “It was definitely challenging to say the least. Our main struggle was getting content to put into the book. At the time, things were still unclear as far as rules and regulations go, so sports and events were getting canceled / rescheduled. So we mainly had to rely on student submissions which wasn’t the reliable strategy but we made it work,” said Mendoza. “I have no idea how we pulled it off, honestly.

“Louie came up with the initial model spread, and we modeled the rest of our graphic design after his idea. We all learn best by imitation when it comes to graphic design, and Louie was definitely a leader for that. We
had to keep up with popular culture among the school despite not being around each other, so social media was
a crucial tool too. Kiersten had some really spectacular, unique graphics too, which broke up the routine minimalist style that’s growing in popularity among graphic designers,” said Rappaport.