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The Official Student Media of Northwestern State University of Louisiana

Purple Media Network

Purple Media Network

The Current Sauce wins state SPJ awards

Kallie Bourgeois
(L-R) Isabel Juarez-Rubio, Lia Portillo Cantarero, Sergy Odiduro, La SPJ president; and David Begnaud, CBS lead national correspondent.

Northwestern State University of Louisiana’s student newspaper, The Current Sauce, received awards from the state’s professional chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists this past weekend. The event gathered journalists across the state to celebrate Outstanding Journalism in Louisiana.

Madelyn Murphy, The Current Sauce’s Arts and Living Editor in the spring semester, won first place in print feature reporting.

The judges’ noted Murphy’s writing strengths that set her apart in the category: “Murphy quotes multiple sources, offers revealing little details and dives deep into unique story ideas.”

Lia Portillo Cantarero, The Current Sauce’s Editor-in-Chief, won second place in print news reporting.

NSU-TV News Service and The Current Sauce collaborated in various stories throughout the year. From these collaborations, the two organizations were also recognized in the multimedia reporting category.

Portillo and Isabel Juarez-Rubio, Current Sauce’s previous Community Outreach Coordinator, took first place with the story of NSU alumna Sarah Jessica Rhodes’ Taylor Swift tribute show. While Kevin Thomas, former Copy Editor, and Kallie Bourgeois, previous Current Sauce Reporter, placed second for multimedia with their interview with NSU’s athletic director Kevin Bostian.

The student media coordinator, Matthew Craig, expressed his excitement for The Current Sauce staff. “Watching the paper grow in popularity through social media and continue to cover great stories throughout the year has been amazing to see,” he said. As he embarks in his third year as the student media coordinator he hopes The Current Sauce grows even more.

Nick Taylor, a professor in the New Media, Journalism and Communication Arts Department and adviser for NSU-TV, said that the collaborations between the two organizations unify student media.

“This lets the student journalists tell a story from multiple angles, giving the audience different perspectives,” Taylor said. “I’m proud of the student journalists who created these stories.”

The Society of Professional Journalists is an organization that advocates for free speech and press freedom while creating a common space for journalists to connect. Sergy Odiduro, SPJ president for the professional chapter in Louisiana, said these awards are a way for the organization to celebrate the work from journalists around the state.

“From our Public Service Awards to our categories recognizing student journalism, it is clear that what we do is vital to the communities we serve,” Odiduro said. “I am proud of all the journalists who won this year and I am looking forward to next year’s competition.”

For more information on SPJ their website is listed here.

The other stories that led to awards will be listed below:

Feature reporting –

News reporting –

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About the Contributors
Lia Portillo Cantarero
Lia Portillo Cantarero, Current Sauce - Editor-in-Chief
Lia Portillo Cantarero is a junior communication major. This is her third year in The Current Sauce and as Editor-in-Chief she hopes to raise awareness around the stories that are happening in the campus community. For Lia, becoming the Editor-in-Chief has been a dream and she is honored to carry the legacy of The Current Sauce forward.
Kallie Bourgeois
Kallie Bourgeois, Current Sauce - Reporter
Kallie Bourgeois is a freshman communication major, with a minor in sociology at NSU. This is her second semester as a reporter for The Current Sauce. She has had a love for storytelling since high school, where she spent a year as her school’s Editor for their newspaper. Kallie looks forward to continuing her passion for journalism by delivering stories of exciting events happening on campus and in the Natchitoches area.  

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