Ouachita Baptist University’s 2012 Ouachitonian yearbook has earned an Associated Collegiate Press (ACP) All-American rating. This is the second year in a row the Ouachitonian has received the All-American rating, which is the highest honor given by ACP.
ACP rates each yearbook in five categories: concept/essentials, content, writing/editing, layout/design and photography. The Ouachitonian received Marks of Distinction in concepts/essentials, content, layout/design and photography. Marks of Distinction are a way of measuring personality, liveliness, imagination, appeal and creativity in all five categories.
“As soon as I saw your cover, I knew I was in for a delightful time,” said Kel Lemons, the ACP judge for the Ouachitonian. “It’s really amazing that only 10 students put it together, a true testament to their dedication and effort.
“Going through your book, I felt like I got a real sense of your school community and what goes on there,” Lemons added. “The book was well-designed with fun spreads, great photography and trendy type treatments. Every spread really connected to that moment and really provided true information to what happened.”
Lemons’ praise for the 2012 Ouachitonian was especially meaningful because the yearbook coincided with Ouachita’s 125th anniversary. “I felt a lot of pressure with it being the 125th anniversary year,” said Tanner Huffman, editor-in-chief of the 2012 yearbook and a 2012 mass communications and graphic design graduate. “I wanted the book to be a perfect mix of old and new to celebrate the rich history of Ouachita while successfully reflecting on the current year. Design is what I do best, so I put most of my effort into the how the book looked.”
“There is always pressure to make the best book possible, but we knew the degree of excellence would have to be up a notch from years past,” said Mauri Sparks, assistant editor of the 2012 yearbook and editor of the 2013 Ouachitonian. Sparks is a junior mass communications and Christian studies major from Queen City, Texas. “We wanted to make sure this huge milestone was reflected in our book, so we did the mini magazine,” an insert focusing on the university’s 125th anniversary.
“Tanner Huffman did a wonderful job of blending the classic and the modern throughout the book, from the cover and theme copy to the division pages and closing, and of course through the mini magazine,” said Dr. Deborah Root, chair of the Rogers Department of Communications and yearbook adviser.
“I wasn’t aiming at the awards when putting the book together,” Huffman said. “I was most concerned with putting together a book that the student body would love and that thoroughly covered that year at Ouachita. Receiving the award simply assured us that we met our goal.”
“I’m very proud of our staff,” Root added. “It is a student publication, therefore it is a learning experience for each staff member. The students work very hard to produce a quality publication for the university. This was my 21st yearbook as adviser, and they never cease to amaze me. We are blessed with gifted and dedicated students.”