SINGAPORE - First-time entrant Singapore American School (SAS) has won The Straits Times National Youth Media Competition.
At the prize-giving ceremony at OCBC Centre, the team, comprising Taylor Julia Haas, Christina Yoh, Daniel Bieker, Varun Singh Bindra, Park Jihoo - all 17 - and Lindsey Mei Cosgrove, 16, walked away with $3,000, Canon Pixma printers and a three-week internship with the broadsheet's newsroom.
The competition, held on Nov 19 last year, is a revamp of the former Straits Times National Schools Newspaper Competition, which got teams to produce a four-page tabloid within 24 hours.
In the new format, 10 finalist teams had to produce a news video featuring professional cyclist Lemuel Lee, who is a member of the OCBC Pro Cycling team, post online news updates and design the front page of The Straits Times.
SAS' team of four girls and two boys, who produce their school's online newsletter, The Eye, beat other schools with a package that demonstrated a well integrated print and online strategy.
Team member Taylor said: "After seeing everyone's work, I thought we would at least be in the top four, but I didn't expect we would win."
Ms Serene Goh, editor of ST's publications for schools, IN and Little Red Dot, said that their approach to delivering the news was "unique".
"SAS showed a high ability in storytelling, and the way they cast the news was very creative. They were unafraid to experiment with the way they played their stories too."
Hwa Chong Institution took the silver award and $2,000, while 2012 winners School of the Arts (Sota) took the bronze award and $1,000.
Hwa Chong Institution also took the subsidiary awards for Best Video and Best Print, while NPS International School took the award for Best Integration.
Merit winners NPS International School, Raffles Institution and Victoria School won $500 each. The consolation prizes of $200 each went to Bukit View Secondary, Nanyang Girls' High School, Seng Kang Secondary and Xinmin Secondary.
Offering her congratulations to the winning team, Ms Koh Ching Ching, the head of group corporate communications at OCBC Bank, the first-time presenting sponsor, said she was impressed with the quality of the work produced by the participants.
"It doesn't matter if any of these students become journalists one day; the training and exposure for these students were very good. I am glad OCBC can support this worthy project, giving the students the unique experience of competitive journalism."
Separately, Canon Singapore was the media contest's official imaging and technology partner, sponsoring equipment and prizes. Adobe sponsored a three-month subscription to its online suite of software, Adobe Creative Cloud, which included the InDesign software that the students used in the competition. Samsung sponsored two Galaxy Note 8.0 tablets as prizes.
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