The West Virginia University School of Journalisms annual alumni news magazine was recently honored by the Columbia Scholastic Press Associations Gold Circle Awards for 2007.

The 2006 edition of the Schools news magazine received first-place honors in the full-page photo layout category of the annual competition. The layout,Portraits of Recovery,features images from the Schools interactive, multimedia websiteStarting Over: Loss and Renewal in Katrinas Aftermath,which chronicles the stories of Hurricane Katrina survivors evacuated to Camp Dawson (Preston County, W.Va.) in 2005.

The students identified as recipients of the award include 2006 news-editorial graduate Michael Costello (Elkview, W.Va.) and 2006 advertising graduates Neel Goel (Newark, Del.) and Ray Weible (Oak Hill, W.Va.).

This recognition speaks to the power of teamwork,said Dana Coester, WVU s assistant vice president for branding and creative direction and supervisor of the yearly magazine.I was so proud of the professionalism this visual team demonstrated in creating an elegant and thoughtful design that reflected the sensitivity of the subject matter.

Since 1925, the Columbia Scholastic Press Association (CSPA) has sponsored annual contests to identify best practices in student writing, editing and publishing.

With 75 categories of entry, the Gold Circle Awards honor the best student reporters, editors, designers, photographers, artists, poets, fiction writers and more. Entries are judged by experienced journalists and educators familiar with student journalism produced in schools and colleges.

This is a tremendous honor for the School of Journalism and the students,said Dean Maryanne Reed.The Gold Circle Awards is the premier competition for student publications from the top journalism programs in the country.

CPSA is international student press association owned by Columbia University and operated as a program affiliated with its Graduate School of Journalism. The Association offers three major services: annual competitions and awards for members, national and regional conventions and summer workshops, and small-press publishing assistance.