West Journalism team medals at state


At the IHSA Journalism State competition held last Friday, April 29, at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, the Joliet West journalism team brought home more awards than ever.

Those who advanced to State competed against 20 other students who placed first through third at their sectional competition.

                The top six entries earned medals and scored points for the overall team. Sophomore Mykiyah Jackson placed fourth in Editorial Cartooning, sophomore Emma Regal placed fourth in Headline Writing, and senior Sydney Czyzon placed fourth in News Writing.

                Even though it was only their first year competing, sophomores Mykiyah Jackson and Emma Regal were very successful at State.

“With it being my first year and all, I didn’t know what to expect. So, I just tried my best and gave it my all and my hard work paid off,” Jackson stated.

“I really enjoyed the experience and was very surprised that I won, and I hope that next year I can take my experience of winning fourth place and use it to improve,” Regal expressed.

Senior Sydney Czyzon has been competing in IHSA journalism competitions for the past three years, but has not placed at the State level until now.

“After doing this for three years, it was the best feeling in the world to be recognized for my writing at the State level. This has been a goal of mine throughout high school and I’m so grateful to have finally accomplished my goal,” Czyzon said.
                Adviser Jenn Galloy has proudly brought her students each year since taking the program over in 2008 to state. There have been only two state winners up to this point; therefore, Galloy could hardly contain herself during the awards ceremony. Her pride for her students didn’t go unnoticed, “I screamed and tried to hold back the tears each time a West competitor was announced, as it was a very defining moment which highlights all the hard work our student journalists do,” she stated.
Another amazing accomplishment that was made known at this event was the announcement of the All-State Journalism Team. Sydney Czyzon is one of fifteen students throughout Illinois to be chosen for this recognition.

The All-State Journalism Team began in spring of 2005, when the Illinois Journalism Education Association recognized a need to honor those students who have proven themselves indispensable to their respective school media (e.g., yearbook, print or online newspaper, print or online newsmagazine, broadcast or other journalist media).

According to the IJEA website, “The students named to the All-State team are considered by their staffs and advisers as “most valuable players” — those students whose leadership, energy, dedication and expertise make their publications possible but whose main contributions often occur behind the scenes.”

This award elevates student journalists who’ve put their publications ahead of themselves. Czyzon will be honored at the IJEA Luncheon in Springfield on June 4.