The Matador newspaper website <thematadorsghs.us> was recently named an Online Pacemaker finalist by the National Scholastic Press Association. The Pacemaker award is often referred to as the Pulitzer Prize of student journalism.
Out of approximately 200 sites from 34 states, 44 were selected as finalists and are currently competing until late April for the award.
Senior staff members Selina Han and Shawn Ho led the way by reconstructing the website after it was taken down in 2015.
“Revamping the website was a gruesome process because Selina and I had no experience at all using WordPress and there was no one to guide us,” Ho said.
Han and Ho searched for a new theme and changed the website accordingly, adding many new features.
“Shawn and I stayed up until four in the morning every night the week leading up to the Pacemaker submission deadline to revamp the site,” Han said. “I’m extremely proud of the work we did, and I’m even more proud of the staff for their contributions to the website content because it was all worth it in the end.”
The Matador continues building their website as judges observe it based on content, design, and growth. Winners will be announced, and staff members will receive their on plaque on April 27 at the opening ceremony of the Spring National High School Journalism Convention in Anaheim.
“The website was mysteriously destroyed in 2015, and for us to rebuild it and come back stronger than ever is particularly gratifying,” Newspaper Adviser Jennifer Kim said.