Thanks to all who submitted their publications to FSPA for evaluation. Judges reviewed 77 yearbooks and 14 literary magazines this summer. Results have been returned to advisers via email; certificates will be mailed in late August. Contact Joe Humphrey at fspacontests (at) with questions.


A reminder that we award $500 scholarships to Florida high school publications advisers who are FSPA members to further their education, typically over the summer. What could you do with that cash?

  • Tuition for one of Poynter’s in-person seminars, where you can learn all the new tricks of the new media technologies — plus a few old, classic skills revisited.
  • Pay for your travel costs out to one of the Reynolds HSJ Institute gatherings.
  • JEA’s Adviser Institute, which will be held in Las Vegas.
  • And so much more…

To apply for either the Julie E. Dodd Scholarship or the Webb-Stapler scholarship, please visit our Awards & Scholarship page.

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Congratulations to these publications, which were honored as All-Florida winners at the

banquet on Friday, April 25.

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Congratulations to the 2014 Spring Digital Contest Best of the Best winners. These were announced at the 2014 state convention. FSPA plans to publish links to all All-Florida winners this summer, including these winners.


Sara Ganim Selfie

During Friday night’s banquet, FSPA 2014 keynote speaker and CNN correspondent Sara Ganim took to the stage to discuss challenges young journalists face, her career and her 2012 Pulitzer Prize win.

But first, she stopped to take a selfie.

The small act of snapping a photo of herself illustrated the main points of her speech: Not long ago, Ganim was in the audience’s shoes. She was 15 when she began reporting for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, and at 26, she’s one of the youngest CNN correspondents.

“Just know that where you sit right now,” she said, “you have so very much ahead of you.”

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Photo credit: Kevin Stephens / FSPA Photo credit: Kevin Stephens / FSPA

Randy Serrano, a political reporter for NBC Universal Telemundo, greeted a packed ballroom of 1,200 students at FSPA 2014’s opening ceremony on Thursday night.

Serrano is a White House and Capitol Hill correspondent. He’s also covered foreign politics, including conflict between Israeli forces and Hezbollah on the Lebanese-Israeli border, the Holy See in Rome and the aftermath of the earthquake in L’Aquila.

He talked about his early days as a journalist, from attending FSPA conventions in high school to working an entry-level position editing tape.

“Never forget to shake hands, meet people, say thank you, [and] say hello,” he said.

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Here is your OTS Contest Breakdown, including where to go and what you need to know.

Advisers, you will provide a list of all students participating in each contest at Registration Window A using the OTS Contest Check-In Worksheet. Student names not received by the start of the contest will be disqualified. Please be sure to write legibly as this form is used for contest certificate printing purposes.

Want to know how you’ll be scored?

Any OTS-related questions should be directed to


The FSPA 2014 Convention Program is now available!


2014 State Convention Preliminary Timeline

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Thursday 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.

Convention Registration; OTS Contest Check-in

Thursday 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

First wave of OTS contests; Networking and critique sessions

Thursday 4 p.m. – 5: 45 p.m.

Second wave of OTS contests; Networking and critique sessions

Thursday 6:30 p.m.

Doors open for Opening Session

Thursday 7 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.

Opening Session

Thursday 8:30 p.m. – 10:15 p.m.

Third wave of OTS contests; Student swap shop

Thursday 9 p.m. – 10 p.m.

Adviser Reception (note: final time may vary slightly)

Thursday 10: 30 p.m.

Day-long OTS contest deadline for submission

Thursday 11:30 p.m.

Convention curfew

Friday, April 25, 2014

Friday 8:30 a.m. – 9:15 a.m.

Adviser breakfast

Friday 9 a.m. – 9:50 a.m.

Session No. 1

Friday 10 a.m. – 10:50 a.m.

Session No. 2

Friday 11 a.m. – 11:50 a.m.

Session No. 3

Friday 12 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.

Adviser luncheon/business meeting; student lunch on own

Friday 2 p.m. – 2:50 p.m.

Session No. 4

Friday 3 p.m. – 3:50 p.m.

Session No. 5

Friday 6 p.m. – 8 p.m.


Friday 9 p.m. – 11:15 p.m.

High School Dance (alternate middle school activity)

Friday 11:30 p.m.

Convention curfew

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Saturday 8: 30 a.m. – 10 a.m.

Closing Session (note: final time may vary slightly)

The Tampa Bay Times Fund Emerging Young Journalist Award recognizes the freshman or sophomore high school student in Florida who shows the most journalistic promise. This year, there are four finalists for the award. A winner is announced the Thursday night of convention, April 24. They are, in alphabetical order:

Isabel Hanewicz of the Excalibur, T.R. Robinson High School
Grace King of WAHS News, American Heritage School
Danielle Malkin of WVHS News, Felix Varela Senior High School
Kathy Xie of the Red & Black, Hillsborough High School

Congratulations to our finalists, and here is a salute from our judges to everyone who applied. The judges said all of the applicants were very talented and among the strongest fields seen in recent years.