UHD’s Student-Run Newspaper Dateline Wins 2022 Rising Star Award
By Indira Zaldivar & Edward Saenz, Editors, The Dateline
Every year, Student Activities hosts the celebratory One Main Event to recognize organizations and individuals that make student life “amazing” and “create positive change” at UHD. The Dateline staff thanks Student Activities for recognizing the devoted newspaper staff as this year's “Rising Star.”
The staff was nominated for their hard work from Fall 2021 through Spring 2022 and are grateful to the University for supporting their work. “The Rising Star award highlights the quality of our paper and the hard work of our talented group,” said James Jurewicz, Dateline writer. “People are paying attention to us.” The staff also wants to let readers know that being a part of the newspaper has improved their college experience and prepared them professionally. Through their work on The Dateline, students develop skills in the various roles that are required to produce the paper, and all majors are welcome.
Fine arts student Giselle Oviedo joined the newspaper as an illustrator in July 2021, ahead of her freshman year at UHD. Her commitment is evident in her more than 95 beautiful illustrations. “The Dateline afforded me to get out of my comfort zone and helped me network with others on and off campus,” Oviedo said. “As clichéd as it sounds, the Rising Star award for me means that teamwork makes the dream work,” she added. “It’s physical evidence of our hard work.”
In addition to the role of illustrator, The Dateline offers roles as writer and photographer, section editor, social media manager, advertising sales, business manager, assistant editor, and editor-in-chief.
Known as the movie reviews guy, Jurewicz has been a longtime Dateline writer – since Spring 2020. Besides letting Gators know which movies are worth watching, he has written articles about arts and entertainment, sports and gaming, and cultural events in the city and local communities. “Along with accommodating my artistic expression and allowing me to build a portfolio of published work,” Jurewicz said, “The Dateline gifted me with a supportive peer group at UHD.”
Dateline's proudest accomplishments include publishing the most editions in a single semester with nine bi-weekly print and digital editions in Spring 2022, and the most editions in a single calendar year with 19 editions in 2022. “We published on a consistent schedule to inform our beloved readers returning to campus since the soft opening of Fall 2021,” said Indira Zaldivar. “Our social media and digital presence saw improvement. Content-wise, we revamped the sports section as “Sports and Gaming” to include gaming stories to highlight the thriving eSports hub on campus.”
The editorial vision of the paper was to be hyperfocused on the UHD community, spotlighting the dedicated students, staff, and faculty that make UHD thrive while also shining a light on issues that need the University’s attention and that will help UHD move forward.
“Our loyal readers know that we report what we think needs/deserves attention,” said Diana Ambrosio, The Dateline Business Manager. Ambrosio joined The Dateline in early Fall 2021 as a writer. Through her role, she has developed her people skills and created a stronger bond with the UHD community since her first writing assignment covering the Hispanic Heritage Month celebration at the Marilyn Davies College of Business in September 2021. “The Dateline made me want to stay at school and participate in on-campus activities instead of just coming to school for classes and going home,” Ambrosio said. “Dateline provided me with a safe place and allowed me to make friends that I wouldn’t have met anywhere else.”
A pressing challenge for The Dateline, compared to other organizations that offer professional opportunities at UHD, such as the American Marketing Association and UHD Structural Engineering Organization, is the lack of a journalism major. However, resiliency is a characteristic Gator trait, and students take on the rigorous challenge of journalism work regardless. Without a prior class on interviewing, getting sources, and reporting on events, most Dateline members have no experience.
“As the head editors, we applaud every member’s commitment to learn and teach on the job," said Edward Saenz. “We teach our peers based on online tools such as the gold standard of news writing, the AP Stylebook, and the journalist toolbox by the Society of Professional Journalists.”
Zaldivar added, “Thank you UHD and Student Activities for recognizing our dedication to the newspaper, our personal and professional growth, and the UHD community we serve. We strive to improve and take on new challenges in 2023 through compassionate storytelling and commitment to truth and justice.”
This story is a partnership with UHD News and The Dateline.