Holy Cross Magazine Receives International CASE Award for Editorial Design

The College of the Holy Cross was recently honored by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) with a 2014 Circle of Excellence Award in the category of editorial design for the Holy Cross Magazine spread, “He Was One of Us.” Created by Stephen Albano, designer for Holy Cross Magazine in College Marketing and Communications, the spread was featured in the Fall 2013 edition of the Magazine and received  a bronze award, chosen based on criteria including creativity, innovation, layout and design.

In honor of the 50-year anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s assassination, “He Was One of Us” transported the reader back to Holy Cross’ campus on the day of the assassination. The written feature included testimonials from alumni and professors as they found out about the death of the country’s beloved leader. Albano paired the moving narrative with an equally moving design.

“We’ve really focused in the last two or three years on improving our photography, but this story was a look back to 1963, so fresh photography was not an option,” says Suzanne Morrissey, editor of Holy Cross Magazine. Instead, Albano turned to the Holy Cross yearbook, the Purple Patcher, scanning the portraits of every member of the Class of 1964 to create a photo mosaic of Kennedy using the images. Inspired by, “He was one of us,” a quote found in the feature, Albano visually brought the notion to life with his design.

The quote came to the forefront of the creative process when deciding how to accurately portray the unique and personal connection the College and its students had with the Kennedy family.  At the time, the College was an almost exclusively New England Irish Catholic college and had received Kennedy during his campaign for Senate in 1956, while his first cousin, Robert Fitzgerald ’57 was class president. Students and faculty awaited his return to College Hill to deliver the commencement address for the Class of 1964, but after his assassination, welcomed Lyndon B. Johnson who fulfilled the late president’s commitment.

The stark, bleak mood of the story, along with Albano’s decision to use black and white photos, brought the readers of the Kennedy era back to that day and younger readers to a greater understanding of how the event’s impact was so strongly felt on the College’s small campus. “The story designed this one,”  Albano says. “I just tried to capture the atmosphere of campus 50 years ago. This recognition is an honor for our small team of three, our office and the College.”

“Creating a magazine for the Holy Cross community is hard work and a lot of fun, too,” offers Morrissey. “We get to share amazing stories about our alumni, faculty and students, so in a way, our work is its own reward. But I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t nice to be recognized by our peers at CASE. Stephen Albano has really refreshed the look of Holy Cross Magazine in the past two years, and this international award highlights his creative efforts.”

Holy Cross has previously been honored by CASE with two Circle of Excellence Awards for a campaign related to “The Holy Cross Fraternity” in 2013, and for a newly designed admissions publication and enhanced admissions website in 2011.

The international Circle of Excellence awards program recognizes outstanding work in advancement services, alumni relations, communications, fundraising and marketing judged by peer professionals at schools, colleges and universities as well as by professionals from outside education. Winners are selected based on a number of factors, including overall quality, innovation, use of resources and the impact on the institution or its external and internal communities such as alumni, parents, students and faculty and staff. In 2014, CASE received more than 3,000 entries for consideration in 100 categories by 630 member higher education institutions, independent schools and nonprofits from around the world.

CASE is one of the largest international associations of education institutions, serving more than 3,650 universities, colleges, schools and related organizations more than 80 countries. CASE is the leading resource for professional development, information and standards in the fields of education fundraising, communications, marketing and alumni relations.

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