UT Student Mag burntOrange Places Second In College Magazine Contest

BurntOrange magazineGet your horns up for the UT journalism program — students in its magazine department have produced, yet again, an award-winning issue of burntOrange.

For four years now, the student magazine has placed first or second for general excellence in a national college magazine contest sponsored by the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication.

This year, burntOrange got the No. 2 spot and also took home the silver in the design category.

The annual magazine gives student readers a taste of UT trivia and history, spotlights interesting courses and people on campus, features the Austiny quirks that play into a student’s UT experience, and more.

Many issues have featured a theme — this year it was books. I admit, it sounded a little boring at first, but editor Emily Watkins and her team managed to pump fun and interesting reads into their special section.

They kicked things off with reasons not to read the popular Twilight book series, then contrasted it with a profile of UT Admissions Research director and author Gary Lavergne who has undergone jail-house interviews with some dangerous prisoners for his true-crime books.

A few professors sat down with burntOrange to share their must-reads and their guilty pleasure books, and the mag laid out a behind-the-scenes look at some of the Ransom Center’s most famous collections, including the Gutenberg Bible, which is featured in a striking photo on the cover.

BurntOrange doesn’t have quite the longevity or the resources that the Daily Texan boasts. Formed as Orange in 2000 in the Magazine Management course taught by senior lecturer and magazine program head Dave Garlock, the publication remains under Garlock’s advisement and separate from Texas Student Media, which oversees the Texan, the Cactus yearbook, the Texas Travesty, KVRX, and Texas Student TV.

This means the magazine has no budget and no office. But each year a handful of students invest their time, energies, and talents into creating a magazine. Many late nights, creative differences, and the outpouring of blood, sweat, and tears later, their hard work (and the more-than-generous advertising dollars from the University Co-op) gets the magazine to the printer. They come away with the tangible results of their efforts and a learning experience that can’t be replicated by studying in a library.

Past editors and staffers have gone on to jobs at local, regional, and national magazines across the country — including The Alcalde. I reported for work at the Alumni Center two days after my December graduation in 2007, while still holding the title of burntOrange editor. In fact, I did double duty until March when we finally got the magazine designed, copy edited, double checked and triple checked, and sent to press.

So, from someone who knows better than anyone the doubt and excitement that goes into producing burntOrange, kudos to this year’s team and good luck to next’s.

For the rest of you, just because your glory days of college life are gone doesn’t mean you can’t relive them. Check out the most recent issue of burntOrange here.



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