For the Illinois Journalism Education Association’s (IJEA) Yearbook Student Media Contest (Division 5), the 2019-2020 MHS yearbook staff received an honorable mention for Overall General Excellence while placing in the top three for three of the eight individual category honors.
“Being part of the photojournalism class at MHS is a huge part of why I’m proud to be a Mustang. As an organization, we strive to represent the student body and everything it means to be a student at MHS,” said Avery Refka ‘22, the current editor-in-chief of the yearbook. “Earning these awards has motivated me to continue my passion for journalism and strive to create a unique book that represents the times we are living in.”
Last year the staff had to alter plans and find ways of finishing the book in the spring when schools went to remote learning because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Last year’s staff worked really hard to find creative ways to cover a historic year; they were thoughtful about their work and committed to producing a great book despite and because of the circumstances,” said Michelle Didzbalis, yearbook adviser.
The MHS yearbook staff also earned first place in two of the individual categories—copy writing and sports coverage.
“I’m so proud of my school’s yearbook staff for this award. As sports editor this year, this award gives me motivation to push for the best sports section we can do alongside the IHSA COVID-19 restrictions,” said Elizabeth Heraty ‘21, the current yearbook sports editor.
Additionally, the staff placed third in the coverage-of-the-year category.
"It honestly is a goal to place number one in coverage,” said Brianna Richards ‘22, the current student life editor of the yearbook, “and to see that last year's book placed third proves that we are moving in a positive direction.”
Photo Caption: Distributing the 2019-20 yearbook through an August drive-by pick-up in the school parking lot, yearbook editors Avery Refka ‘22 and Elizabeth Heraty ‘21 (left) show off the cover of the award-winning yearbook.