About the Portfolio of the Year Contest

The Kansas Scholastic Press Association recognizes the best individuals in Kansas scholastic journalism in four different categories– design, photojournalism, video and reporting. Based on their submitted portfolios, KSPA judges select the best in each category and division. This contests is open to any student journalist on a staff with a current KSPA membership. Here are the 2020 Portfolio of the Year winners.

Photojournalist of the Year

5A/6A & Overall Winner:

Kate Nixon—Shawnee Mission East High School

Quote about Kate’s work from a KSPA judge

Kate has a great idea for true storytelling moments. With each of her images, she really was in the proper place and found images that told stories I wanted to know more about. There wasn’t a weak image in the entire batch of her submission, they were all top-notch images. Each image was technically very strong and the images allowed the reader to connect with the image and the story it was trying to tell.

3A/4A Winner:

Sophie Osborn—Chanute High School

Quote about Sophie’s work from a KSPA judge

Sophie has a really great eye for finding those decisive, storytelling moments in everyday moments. Most of the photos were of subjects that were doing something repeatedly (basketball, football, classwork) and Sophie was able to find images that engaged the readers and told stories I wanted to know more about. In addition, technically, Sophie’s images were technically very strong: tack sharp and properly exposed in almost every case.

Videographer of the Year

5A/6A & Overall Winner:

Sydney Holmes—The Maize Career Academy

Quote about Sydney’s work from a KSPA judge

There’s a lot of creative camera angles and work time evident on the videography and visuals in these pieces — from creative first-person shots in the Sunday Volleyball League piece to covering a store opening in the community. In each and every piece, there’s a strong verbal-visual story-telling connection between the creative visuals and awesome interviews, scripted VOs and anchor stand ups. Her reporter stand ups are clear, brief and spot on topic.

Designer of the Year

5A/6A & Overall Winner:

Madeline Paradis—Salina Central High School

Quote about Madeline’s work from a KSPA judge

This designer has a well-developed style. Through all her work, the reader is blessed with reader-friendly, engaging design. There is not too much information packed onto a page or spread. Strong attention to details, including not too tight leading and font size. I appreciated that her work was not over-designed. This designer ‘s work is on a professional level. Well done!

Writer of the Year

5A/6A & Overall Winner:

Ben Henschel—Shawnee Mission East High School

Quote about Ben’s work from a KSPA judge

This portfolio displayed a nice variety of topics. The articles demonstrated a consistent use of research, interviews, observations and story-telling to deliver compelling, in-depth and important work. This reporter truly went in-depth to show how issues impact a variety of people and situations.