2020 SIPA’s Best Writing Contest

2020 SIPAs Best Writing Contest


Academic Script

News Script


Sports Script

Literary Magazine


  • First Place – Trinity Hutzler, “Tribe Talk,” Wando HS




  • First Place – Charlotte Pollack, Voices, Nation Ford HS
  • Second Place – Grace Langiliad, Clarke Central HS
  • Third Place – Alexandra Cardona, Voices, Nation Ford HS



Editorial Column
Judge’s comments: I am impressed with the quality of the editorial columns I read. The topics were timely, showed evidence of research. Some were localized, with interviews from teachers and community leaders, and that helped them rise to the top. The winners addressed their high school audiences. The writing was clear and grammatically correct.

Staff Editorial

Entertainment/Feature Column
Judge’s comments: From the lede, the writer draws in the reader with her creative storytelling style. She structures her sentences almost like rhythmic beats that convey an urgent and stressful tone. Her account articulately details the range of emotions – from excitement to fear and sadness – that accompanied her journey, providing valuable insight into the immigrant experience.

Feature Story

News Feature

News Story

Personality Feature


Sports Column
Judge’s comments: This column is a wonderful mix of fact and opinion, statistics and storytelling. You made me LOL with the line about you and your parents figuring out you were not an athlete! It’s fun that you found your place as a runner, and sharing your story in this way doubtless gave your readers something to think about in their own athletic journeys.

  • First Place – Bram Mansbach, The Southerner, Henry W. Grady HS
    Second Place – Kayla RubensteinThe Patriot Press, American Heritage School
  • Third Place – Ben Allen, Tribal Tribune, Wando HS

Sports Feature

Sports Story
Judge’s comments: This sports news piece on athletes battling heat advisories included great sourcing, details and quotes from a wide variety of people. Kudos as well for going with a straight news lede about a serious topic. We love writing scene-setters and anecdotal ledes for everything, but sometimes the summary news lede still works best!

  • First Place – AJ Carr, ODYSSEY newsmagazine, Clarke Central HS
  • Second Place – Julia Kay SmithThe Shield, McCallum HS
  • Third Place – Megan HarkeyNorthwest Horizons, Northwest Guilford HS


Alternative Storytelling



  • First Place – Marisa Salazar, The Dispatch online, James Bowie HS
  • Second Place – Helen Moore, The Southerner online, Henry W. Grady HS
  • Third Place – Roxanne Domizi, ODYSSEY Media Group, Clarke Central HS

Investigative Story


Personality Feature



  • First Place – Duncan Tanner, The Southerner online, Henry W. Grady HS
  • Second Place – Ana Arredondo, Eagle Nation Online, Prosper HS
  • Third Place – Kennedy Wyles, Eagle Nation Online, Prosper HS

Photo Cutlines

Feature Cutline

News Cutline

Sports Cutline


Academic Copy

Ads/Community Copy

Groups Copy

People Copy

Sports Copy

Student Life Copy

Theme Copy

  • First Place – Rylie Jones, The Knight, McCallum HS
  • Second Place – Gracie Boyce and Laurel Davis, The Archive, Richland Northeast HS
  • Third Place – Kaleigh Mullis, Kaleidoscope, Lugoff-Elgin HS