It’s awards season, and we are taking a moment to congratulate ourselves as Monterey County Weekly was recognized in the 2021 California Journalism Awards, from the California News Publishers Association. We’re especially proud of first place awards in the categories of Covid-19 coverage (which a judge recognized as “the gold standard for this competition”) and public service for our coverage of Feast of Lanterns and Pacific Grove’s reckoning with anti-Asian racism. Special kudos to staff writer Pam Marino for contributions in those categories, and for first place in local government reporting for her coverage of the assessment appeals process for the Stanton Center in Monterey. Editor Sara Rubin won first place for columns; Associate Editor Tajha Chappellet-Lanier won second place for feature writing for her piece on Deetjen’s reopening, and staff writer David Schmalz won second for land-use reporting for his coverage of FORTAG. The entire team was recognized with second-place awards for special publication for our annual Aging and Disability Resource Guide (the 2022 edition is out this week), and in the General Excellence category.
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
“Paperwork be damned. Just get the job done.” - King City Mayor Mike LeBarre, speaking about his frustration with the slow bureaucratic process to get a Homekey project approved to house the city’s homeless population. The King Fire, which burned about 90 acres, started in an encampment on May 25 and left one person dead (stories posted at mcweekly.com on May 26 and May 27).
GOOD WEEK / GREAT WEEK
Throughout May, professors from Stanford University hosted a series of symposiums for high school students on the topics of international security and cross-cultural education. Of the 24 students who participated, 10 were from Alisal and Everett Alvarez high schools in Salinas (the others were from Silicon Valley). The event was organized in part by Ignacio Ornelas Rodriguez, a Salinas native who works at Stanford. The goals of the symposium were manifold: to introduce the students to weighty topics like biosecurity, terrorism and nuclear weapons, but just as importantly, to allow them to interact with scholars at one of the world’s most prestigious institutions, and inspire them to believe that they could someday be one of those scholars too. “Sometimes people forget these kids are the first in their families attending high school,” Ornelas Rodriguez says. “These kids are truly pioneers.”
They’re celebrating at Greenfield High School where for the first time, five seniors have received Apple Scholars scholarships worth $17,000 each. The scholarships are awarded to college-bound students who have demonstrated an innovative use of technology. The five students and their colleges are: Aria Palamino, UC Davis; Jose Mendoza, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo; Maribel Lopez-de Jesus, San Francisco State; Edit Bautista, UC Los Angeles; Julian Untalon, Hartnell College. The scholarships come after Greenfield High engineering design teacher Bernie Barge launched a robotics program two years ago, securing a donation from Apple for 100 robot kits. “As a teacher it was very moving to witness their reactions the day the students found out they received the Apple scholarship,” Barge said in a press release. “Our students are so often overlooked because of our location.”