View the awarded story and drawing here.

Rising junior Sanjana Anand, an Octagon editor-in-chief, and sophomore Brynne Barnard-Bahn received recognition from the National Scholastic Press Association for Outstanding Coronavirus Coverage.

In the April 30 competition, one of three in April and May, Barnard-Bahn won third place for her illustration with Anand’s April 29 story, “Unable to visit colleges, seniors use online tours, websites.”

Barnard-Bahn said she felt honored and surprised as she didn’t know she was entered in the first place.

“My sister woke me up with the news,” she said.

Barnard-Bahn’s inspiration came from her sister and former co-editor-in-chief, Larkin, ’20.

“I got the idea from seeing my sister and other seniors stress about how disappointing their first year of college will be due to COVID-19,” Barnard-Bahn said.

Anand earned ninth place for the story. 

“I wanted to write about something that affected seniors across the country,” she said. 

Anand said the story was one of the most important she has written.

“I wrote the story right before the seniors announced their college decisions, so it showed the struggles they went through,” Anand said.

With her college applications now one year away, Anand added she got advice while talking to the seniors.

“(The seniors) gave me helpful  college-finding resources to use, especially if this pandemic goes on longer than expected,” Anand said.

By Rod Azghadi

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