By LISA DAVIS
GENEVA-ON-THE-LAKE - - Star Beacon student reporters and their advisers from Ashtabula County high schools met Tuesday for the student reporting program's annual award luncheon.
The luncheon, at the Geneva State Park Lodge and Conference Center, signaled the end of another school year. During the school year, two students from each high school had the opportunity to write monthly columns about events that take place around their school and submit the articles for publication in the Star Beacon.
For more than 50 years, the newspaper has offered the program, which is educational and highlights individual high schools.
"This year has gone by so quickly," said Star Beacon Family Life editor Nicki Wilpula. "It's been a good year."
Wilpula, who heads the program, thanked the students for participating and the advisers for making the program a success again this year. Wilpula also took time to tell each student reporter team what she liked about their columns.
Another speaker at the luncheon was Star Beacon editor Neil Frieder.
"I congratulate all of you and thank you," he said. "You decided to cross the threshold between being literate or illiterate."
Through writing, the students have shown they are literate people, Frieder said.
"It will take you far," he said."By taking the step to write for us (the Star Beacon) and your school, it will take you on a lifelong journey."
This year's participating schools were South Ridge Christian Academy, Grand River Academy, Edgewood Senior High School, Ashtabula County Joint Vocational School, Ss. John and Paul High School, Geneva High School, Jefferson Area High School, Pymatuning Valley High School, Conneaut High School, Grand Valley High School and Lakeside High School.
Students and schools also were recognized for two awards, and received individual plaques and a school plaque. The Outstanding Student Reporter Award went to Helene Jackson and Karley Rich of Jefferson High School, Charli Valerio and Charles Debevec of Lakeside High School, and Crystal Watson and Alaina Hutchinson of South Ridge Christian Academy. The Excellence in Journalism Award went to Jillian Moga and Trisha Dreslinski of Edgewood Senior High School, Emily Ernes and Jessica Miller of Geneva High School, Mandy Weed and Melissa Borden of ACJVS, and Elizabeth Sigley and Nolan Holley of Grand Valley High School.