Two reporters sweep state finals; Insists to bring home awards from nationals


Chris Cuadras, Commentary Reporter, holds the official sweep-stakes trophy which recognizes Quest News placing third for most awards. Quest News’ second competition was “successful practice” for reporters as they prepare for Nationals in three weeks. Photo courtesy of Advisor, Mrs. Deming.

Luis Lopez and Natalie West

Lugo’s journalism class, Quest News, takes third place for the, “Sweepstakes Award” at the Los Angeles Journalism Teachers Association (LAJTA) Write-Off. Nine reporters attended the March 11 competition at Cal State Northridge. The students were able to compete against 12 other schools.

Out of eight reporters competing, six placed while the other two still had the opportunity to compete. Once the students arrived to the college, they were split up into five different sections: News, Opinion, Features, Sports, and Photography. The six students that placed will be advancing to California State Regionals on March 25th.

The following reporters placed in every section possible starting with Hailey Scott taking second place in Opinion Writing, while Chris Cuadras, another Opinion reporter, placed third. Johnny Palavecino, one of the two photographers in Quest News, places third in the Photography competition. Kaitlyn Valenzuela, Features reporter, takes fourth place for Features writing.

Luis Vazquez, News reporter, places seventh place for News writing.  Brandie Altuna, Sports Editor, places seventh place in Sports feature writing. The last reporter to place is Nolan Fernandez, Sports reporter, with eighth place in Sports feature writing.

All of the students listed above qualify to compete at State Regional’s for the Southern California Journalism Education Association, making this Quest’s biggest competition yet. State Regionals comprises journalism advisers from high schools from Santa Barbara to San Diego. SCJEA is affiliated with the National JEA.

Half of the students that attended March 11th are also competing in Nationals in Seattle for News, Sports, Features, Novice News, and Photography. Early April, from the sixth to the ninth, the national JEA convention welcomes the few students that recently competed and an addition of four more Quest reporters to face against students around the United States. The Quest News website will be getting critiqued for an award as well as participating in nine other competitions.

Lately, Quest News has been preparing for the huge event in April with trying to get as much experience as they can to win. Quest has been in multiple competitions and are getting positive results with the big wins and trophies they are receiving. “The recent events are good practice for the huge Seattle competition,” states Brandie Altuna, Sports Editor and future Editor in Chief.