When junior Lauren Brennan opened Adobe Illustrator to work on a project designing stamps for the Typographic Design class taught by Claudia Strong, she barely knew the software. Despite that, for the first time since the beginning of the class, she felt she had the creative skills to complete the assignment.
As the only design minor in the class, Brennan experienced “imposter syndrome” at first. She had only taken the Introduction to Graphic Design class, and that was remote. When she started the Typographic Design class, she wasn’t sure how to approach the design process. Midway through the class, however, she was confident enough in her design skills to know that even if she didn’t fully understand the software, she could design something great.
And she did. Her stamp series, “Fashion Forward,” which highlighted the fashion contributions of Lupita Nyongo, Michelle Obama, Naomi Campbell and Diana Ross, won gold in the Graphis New Talent Annual 2022 competition.
“The whole class and especially this project pushed me to do many things that, honestly, I didn’t think I was capable of with the skillset that I was going in with,” she says “But it’s definitely rewarding now to see that the hard work pays off.”
Brennan’s gold was one of 30 awards won by students in Strong’s Typographic Design class, including two golds, 10 silvers and 18 honorable mentions. It’s a particularly impressive achievement because the competition is international and run by one of the world’s most prestigious publishers in design, advertising, photography and annuals. Students won for a variety of class projects, from brochures to typeface design.
Brennan says the class was pivotal in her understanding of design. While the sheer amount of projects seemed daunting at first, she says they each challenged her in a new way and built upon each other to give her a better understanding of what the design process looks like as a whole.
Strong chose to assign each project with specific goals in mind, like challenging students to work on a small scale in the stamp project or understand the intricacies of typefaces after designing their own. She says the class reflects the goals of the visual communications curriculum at the Newhouse School.
“Rather than forcing students into a pre-determined mold, we encourage all of our students to lean into their interests and instincts and strengths while coursing through the curriculum,” Strong says. “Our goal is to develop curious, adaptable thinkers who harness their individual vision to produce unique professional-level work.”
Sophomore Angelo Garufi, the other gold-winning student in the class, says that without these high expectations, he probably would not have been able to produce that quality of work. At the end of the class, when he revisited his first assignment to revise it for the final portfolio, he could see how much he had improved as a designer.
“It was a rigorous class. I learned a lot and I enjoyed it,” Garufi says. “We were held to a high standard, so we made high-quality work.”
Brennan agrees that the pressure to produce professional-caliber work was motivating, particularly because she knew Strong believed she could produce work at that level.
“It’s nice to have someone pushing you because that means they know that you are capable of what they are asking you to do,” Brennan says. “I think just having professors around you that are constantly encouraging you to do things or giving you advice [is] reassuring, that they trust that you have the capability.”
For Strong, submitting students’ work to the Graphis competition is all about showing students how capable they really are.
“I want these young design students to know that good work gets noticed, that hard work pays off, that they are talented, and that their future is at hand,” Strong says. “Placing at any level is a tremendous confidence boost and comes just in time to confirm their decision to become designers and propel them into the rest of their career here at Newhouse and beyond.”
Elizabeth Kauma is a senior in the magazine program at the Newhouse School.
Each spring, the Newhouse School recognizes those students whose dedication, ingenuity, academic excellence and creativity exhibit extraordinary talent and effort.
2022 Syracuse University Scholars
Ghael Fobes Mora
Thomas J. Shaw
2022 Newhouse Class Marshals
Chelsea B. Stern
Morgan C. Tucker
2022 Newhouse Scholars
Ghael Fobes Mora
Thomas J. Shaw
2022 Graduate Master’s Prize
Sherman Patrick Hardy
Mary Zoretski Key Award
Dean’s Service Award
Newhouse First-Year Achievement Award
Harry d. Meyers Memorial Prize in Advertising
Deborah Fink Green Award
Most Promising Advertising Student
Advertising Department Award for Academic Excellence
Advertising Student of the Year
Bandier Program Innovator/Operator Award
Bandier Program Leadership Award
Don Edwards Broadcast Journalism Award
Radio-TV-News Power Producer Award
Beth Mowins ’90 Award in Broadcast Journalism
Bob Heisler Award For Excellence
Henry J. Wolff Memorial Prize
Heather L. Fleischman Memorial Scholarship
Maria Riccardi Scholarship
Magazine, News And Digital Journalism Graduate Achievement Award
Henry J. Leader Memorial Prize
Samuel V. Kennedy III Award For Newspaper Editing
Charnice Milton Award For Excellence In Community Journalism
William Glavin Award For Excellence In Magazine Writing
John Mitchell Award for Sports Reporting
Lauretta H. McCaffrey Journalism Prize And Newhouse Award For Journalism Excellence
Public Relations Certificate of Achievement
William Doescher Award for the Outstanding Public Relations Master’s Degree Student
William P. Ehling Award
Chelsea B. Stern
Public Relations Department Chair Award for Leadership
Public Relations Public Service Award
Julie Mendez Diversity and Inclusion Award in Public Relations
Gordon J. Alderman Memorial Prize
A. William Bluem Award
Edward L. Hersh Award
Bridgit M. Patterson
Glenn Steinfast Award for Excellence in Documentary Film Production
Rowan Elizabeth Ide
Stan Alten Excellence in Audio Award
Zak Trifone Love of Life and Music Award
Irene M. Sholkin Prize in Script Writing
George Plavocos Radio Achievement Award
Prize in Graphic Design
Prize in Motion Graphics
Natalia Deng Yuan
Bertram J. Davis Scholar Award
Dr. Frank Meola Photography Prize
Jeff Licata Photography Award
Society for News Design/Marshall Matlock Student Designer of the Year Award
Catherine l. Covert Research Award
Phoebe Smith – Honorable Mention
David Rubin First Amendment Prize
Excellence in Web Development and Coding
Soo Min Seol
Oh, The Places You’ll Go/ Rafferty Award
Newspaper and online journalism senior Abigail Weiss took first place in the Hearst Journalism Awards Program Personality/Profile Writing competition.
Weiss won for her article, “THE ONE: Joe Biden’s 1st wife Neilia Biden shaped his life, career while at Syracuse,” published in The Daily Orange. Weiss did the article at the urging of her editor at The Daily Orange.
“I saw this as an opportunity to not only write the untold story of an exceptional SU alumna but to learn how she shaped our current president and connected with people in Syracuse. While it’s been 50 years, I don’t think Biden would be who he is without Neilia. I wanted to give her some recognition for that.”
Weiss says she’s in the job-hunting stage right now, but would like to go into climate journalism or become an audience producer in the future.
Weiss will receive a $3,000 scholarship for the first place win, and qualifies for the National Writing Championship in May.
Each year, the Switzerland-based Golden Award of Montreux competition includes five advertising student winners from around the world. Newhouse creative advertising alumnus Sam Luo ’21 is the only Gold Medal winner from an advertising school in the U.S. He won in the print/poster subcategory for his “McDelivery” print ad campaign, created while he was a student at Newhouse.
“No one from Newhouse has won this before, and the show is dominated by art and portfolio schools,” Luo says. “Seeing my campaign prevail as one of the five winning entries from around the world and represent both Newhouse and the United States is absolutely unbelievable.”
The global competition celebrates creative and innovative student work in the categories of film, print/poster, design, digital/social and use of media. According to the competition website, the competition honors “the creation of excellent advertising” that reflects how “communication is part of the global world of creativity.”
Luo is grateful for his two creative advertising professors, Mel White and Kevin O’Neill, for helping him become a stronger art director during his time at Newhouse. “They work so tirelessly to teach and empower students like me to create the absolute best work that we can, and it paid off,” he says.
The appreciation and admiration go both ways, as White says Luo constantly impressed her with the work he created.
“Sam was one of those rare students who is constantly creative,” White says. “He was creative non-stop throughout the semesters, school breaks, in between the semesters and in the summers. He lived, ate and breathed creative advertising. He is naturally curious and works hard to create the most outstanding campaigns possible. He treated his Portfolio courses as times to grow and push himself to create solutions to advertising problems that are innovative and award-winning. He volunteered for any creative opportunity that presented itself. And he is very good at listening to feedback and using that to push his ideas even further. This is one of the secrets to creating great advertising, and one that Sam mastered. He’s also the most awarded student we’ve ever had.”
O’Neill says he agrees with White’s sentiments about Luo. “At the risk of ruining Sam with high praise, he really is a once-a-decade talent for us at Newhouse,” O’Neill says. “He’s an explosive combination of visual imagination and relentless dedication to his craft. It was a privilege to have him pass through our classrooms.”
Magazine, news and digital journalism senior Kyra Surgent was awarded an honorable mention by the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing (SABEW) for her article, “Amazon fashion takes over TikTok #FYPs everywhere.” The article originated in Melissa Chessher’s Magazine Article Writing course and was published on The NewsHouse. Kyra is the first Syracuse University student to be recognized by SABEW in this competition.
Doctoral candidate Jeongwon Yang received the Outstanding TA award from Syracuse University’s Graduate School, recognizing teaching assistants who have made distinguished contributions to Syracuse university through excellency in teaching or assisting senior faculty members in high-enrollment courses.
“I would definitely like to teach in the future. I learned so much from being a TA as I learned what I am good at and what I can improve in the future. Teaching the course myself and receiving students’ feedback, I had a chance to try different teaching methods to create an engaging and inclusive learning environment,” says Yang.
Winners will receive a personalized gift from the Graduate School. Congratulations, Jeongwon!
Magazine and digital journalism (MND) senior Christopher Cicchiello took first place in the Hearst Journalism Awards Program Sports Writing competition.
Cicchiello won for his article, “Why doesn’t Syracuse University pay Otto the Oranges?” published on The Newshouse. The idea came to Cicchiello when he met a former Otto at a football tailgate. In the course of his investigation, Cicchiello discovered that other institutions were paying their mascots as much as $75 an hour, while Syracuse considered the position a volunteer service.
“Ultimately, I realized that a lack of payment was an issue of accessibility since some of the students have had to find a paying part-time campus job,” says Cicchiello.
Cicchiello expressed gratitude to MND professor Melissa Chessher, who taught the class for which he wrote the article, for her support. “[Professor Chessher] said that this article was award-winning before I had written a word of it.”
MND professor Harriet Brown was a judge for the competition. “Winning first-place in a Hearst writing competition is like winning a student Pulitzer,” Brown says. “You’re competing with student journalists from all over the country, the best of the best. It’s an incredible achievement and an honor.”
Cicchiello says he was celebrating being a finalist for the Syracuse Press Club awards for this article when he received the email from Hearst. “I almost fell out of my chair in surprise, and I had to read it again to be sure there wasn’t some error. But in fact, I had won.”
Cicchiello will receive $3,000 for his first place win, and qualifies for the National Writing Championship in May.
Newhouse School students had 15 wins and 11 finals in this year’s Society for Professional Journalists (SPJ) Mark of Excellence Region 1 competition, which includes work from students throughout the Northeast. Winners will now advance to compete against other regional winners for the national Mark of Excellence awards, which will be announced later this spring.
Best Independent Online Student Publication
Best Use of Multimedia
Breaking News Photography
Broadcast/Online Sports Videography
The comeback year
The real flavor of Syracuse
General Column Writing (Large)
The wheelchair quarterback
General News Photography (Large)
General News Reporting (Large)
Maggie Hicks, Sarah Alessandrini
The Daily Orange
Interstate 81’s impact on Syracuse community, then and now
In-Depth Reporting (Large)
Our poisoned kids
Radio News Reporting
Our poisoned kids
Sports Column Writing
Anish Vasudevan, Roshan Fernandez, Connor Smith
The Daily Orange
Dino Babers’ 2021-22 season
Sports Writing (Large)
Why doesn’t Syracuse University pay Otto the Oranges?
Television Breaking News Reporting
John Perik, Ricky Sayer, Chilekasi Adele, Lindsey Fine, Josh Meyers
Students protest rape culture
Television In-Depth Reporting
NCC Spotlight Team
Transparency – private emails, public business
Best All-Around Television News Magazine
Erin Lyons, Josh Meyers, Katie Lane, Ricky Sayer
COVID-19 year-in-review/CitrusTV special report
Best Student Magazine
Best Student Magazine
General Column Writing (Large)
Columns by Margo Moran
General News Photography (Large)
The Daily Orange
Syracuse community protests Columbus statue
Jonathan Harris, Hanna Martin
Live oaks and dead folks
Forging ahead with a winter adventure
In-Depth Reporting (Large)
BLK in the ADK
Cole Strong, T. Michael Collier
How can a computer create art?
Television Feature Reporting
Retired Professor Marvin Druger’s lasting legacy at Syracuse University
Television General News Reporting
Skyline apartment hearing
Newhouse School students from almost every program were recognized at the 2022 Broadcast Education Association Festival of Media Arts.
The Newhouse School earned top prizes in the Student Division for the “Deconstructing the Divide” website designed by graphic design alumnus Kevin Camelo ’21, and Best Sports Video Talent for broadcast and digital journalism graduate student James Kattato.
In the Faculty Division, visiting assistant professor of television, radio and film Jordan Kligerman won the Best of Competition honor in the Sports Short-form Video for “In Memoriam Floyd Little: Leave a Legacy.”
Winners be recognized Monday, April 25at BEA 2022 during the BEA Best of the Festival Awards.
Congratulations to everyone on such a great achievement!
Deconstructing the Divide by Kevin Camelo
Upstate Unearthed by Patrick McCarthy, Michael Garcia, Izzy Bartling & Ben Oleksinski
1st Place: James Kattato
Award of Excellence: Lauren Helmbrecht
Award of Excellence: “Out of Focus” by Kelly Marie Davis
Award of Excellence: “Sunday Reverie” by Xinning Li
Award of Excellence: “Catfish PSA” by Magaret Anderson, Kylie Gorsky & Vincent Zakian
3rd Place: “Our Poisoned Kids” by Sydney Gold
TV Hard News
Award of Excellence: NCC News: U.S. Border, Open After 2-Year Closure, Brings Back A Different Type of Canadian Traveler by Ghael Fobes
3rd Place: Louise Rath
Award of Excellence: Max Kent’s Rise to Captain by Thomas Cook
Award of Excellence: Syracuse vs. Louisville Football by Jaaron May
3rd Place: “On The Bench” by William Shea
Award of Excellence: “Live Cuse Countdown” by Ryan Nelson
Best of Competition – “In Memoriam Floyd Little: Leave a Legacy” by Jordan Kligerman
Award of Excellence: Newhouse School Covid Safety Video by Dona Hayes & Rafael Concepcion
Award of Excellence: “DJ Bella J – On The One – Syracuse” by RC Concepcion
In this year’s American Advertising (ADDY) Awards competition, Newhouse creative advertising students won a total of 23 ADDYs across all three levels: local, regional and national.
The ADDY Awards program is the largest and most comprehensive competition for recognizing excellence in advertising. Sponsored by the American Advertising Federation, the competition includes a student division designed especially for college advertising students.
In the national competition, Sam Luo and Allison Scherger won three out of the 25 Gold ADDYs, the first in school history, and Newhouse tied with two other schools for the most National Gold ADDY wins. This follows last year’s historic win of Newhouse’s first National ADDY ever, a Silver won by Mike Gaines.
“Winning ADDY awards is another successful testament to the high caliber of the Newhouse advertising curriculum,” says James Tsao, advertising department chair. “We are proud of the students’ achievement and look forward to more outstanding learning outcomes in the years to come.”
“Sam and Allison have grown so much creatively in their Portfolio courses in the advertising creative track,” says advertising professor of practice Mel White. “They are the kind of students who always worked hard, took in the feedback and then worked even harder to push their ideas further. They took advertising problems and explored creating strong and innovative visual solutions in their campaigns that are simply powerful. This visual solution thinking is emphasized in the art direction program I’ve been building here at Newhouse over the last six years.”
Newhouse students also won four awards at the District 2 ADDYs competition: one Best in Show, one Gold and two Silver. At the local Rochester Advertising Federation (RAF) ADDYs, Newhouse students won 16 of the 19 awards. Of those ADDYs, there were two Best In Show, eight Gold and six Silver.
There were two National Gold ADDY winners in the Student Print Advertising: Magazine Campaign category, and both were Newhouse creative advertising students.
Scherger, art director, won for her “Decibullz Earplugs” print ad campaign. For the same campaign, she won Silver at the District competition and Gold at the local competition. Scherger says she feels so much pride and gratitude for winning so many awards from the three shows. She also appreciates everything White has taught her and her classmates.
“Portfolio classes are never a breeze, but this would be only one example of how much the hard work pays off,” Scherger says. “Today, I wonder if I wouldn’t have these awards if I hadn’t taken extra time on the craft. I’m so grateful to have a professor who not only pushes me but also cares more about the students’ work and needs rather than the deadlines. ADDY awards are an amazing achievement, but most importantly, it’s motivation to keep up the hard work.”
Scherger’s Decibullz Earplug campaign was her first campaign ever. She spent over 25 hours photoshopping the final images for the campaign and says she worked tirelessly to make it the best it could be.
“The fact that the first campaign I ever made took me all the way to Nationals and won gold is such an amazing feeling,” Scherger says. “I was already so proud and excited to just have my work judged at the national level, let alone win the top prize.”
Luo, art director, was the other National Gold ADDY winner in the Student Print Advertising: Magazine Campaign category for his “Go in Deep” print ad campaign for Oral-B Glide Floss.
In the Student Elements of Advertising: Art Director category, Luo was the only National Gold winner for the Girls Who Code print ad campaign “A Step Behind” he created with Olivia Gormley, copywriter.
Luo says getting to share the experience with Scherger made the National ADDYs wins extra special.
“I know how hard-working and talented she is, and the fact that she won at such a young age is just a really exciting moment for both of us and for Newhouse,” he says. “It was the first time that Newhouse had a gold-winning entry at the National ADDYs, let alone three, so we’re excited for each other.”
Of all the Newhouse student winners, Luo won the most ADDYs across the three competitions. Along with his two National Gold ADDYs, Luo won three ADDYs at the District 2 competition. He won a Best in Show and Gold ADDY for “A Step Behind” in the Elements of Advertising Art Direction Campaign category and a Silver for “Go in Deep” in the Print Advertising Campaign category.
At the local RAF competition, Luo took home two Scholarship Best in Show awards for a total cash prize of $1,500, seven Gold and four Silver ADDYs. The two Best in Show wins were for his online interactive campaign “The Switch” for the Alzheimer’s Association and print ad campaign “McDelivery” for McDonald’s. He won Gold in the Print Magazine Campaign category for “Go in Deep” and “McDelivery” and interactive campaign “The Switch.” Luo won Gold for Art Direction for his print ad campaigns “Tame the Animal,” “Go Wild,” “A Step Behind,” and “McDelivery.” Luo’s four Silver wins went to “Tame the Animal,” “Go Wild,” “A Step Behind” and “Go in Deep.”
“I’m really proud of my work and I’m so grateful for the Rochester Advertising Federation,” Luo says. “I didn’t expect to win two Best in Show scholarships, but I’m really proud that I did.”
Two other Newhouse students found success at the local RAF ADDYs this year. Emma Michelson, copywriter, won Silver in the Print Advertising Campaign category for her “Shades of Sustainability” print ad campaign for Faber-Castell. Grace Curran, copywriter, won Silver in the Elements of Advertising Copywriting category for her print ad campaign “Ugly Fruit” for Misfits Market.
The award-winning work was created in Portfolio I, Portfolio II and Portfolio III courses taught by White and advertising professor of practice Kevin O’Neill.
“These student award competitions are really a dress rehearsal for the advertising business itself,” O’Neill says. “They sharpen our students’ competitive instincts and force them to measure themselves against only the highest, often global, standards.”
All of the local student ADDY RAF Award winners are pictured online in the 2020-2021 RAF American Advertising Awards Showbook on pages 109-140. The ADDY District 2 winners are listed online in the student section at the bottom. And the ADDY National Gold Student Winners are featured on the American Advertising Awards website.
Samantha Savery is a graduate student in the Goldring arts journalism and communications program.