VASJ's Ventures Magazine earns Excellent ranking

The 2012 issue of Ventures, VASJ’s literary magazine, was one of the best in years. “We did more planning than any magazine before – a lot of time and effort was put into it,” says Maria Dybzinski ’13, one of the magazine’s editors. “We really wanted to make it good for (English teacher) Mrs. (Charlene) Dayton since it was her last year.” (Mrs. Dayton retired in May after more than two decades of teaching English at VASJ).

Their hard work was rewarded when they recently received an Excellent ranking in the 2012 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Program to Recognize Excellence in Student Literary Magazines.

Each year VASJ’s Ventures Club compiles a group of student pieces including poetry, nonfiction, fiction, prose, digital and traditional art, and photography to form Ventures magazine. The entire production is student-driven from choosing the theme, designing the layout, marketing the magazine to the student body, making up contests and incentives to encourage participation, and judging which pieces will be included in the final publication, which is submitted at the end of each school year.

“It’s a chance for students who like to write and draw to show off what they do all year,” says Nicole Ouaddaadaa ’13, another editor of the magazine.

Last year’s theme, Path Breakers, was about breaking away from the norm. “It was about being different and being proud of it,” Nicole explained. “Just like us,” Kelly Tecco ’13, another editor, added.

Being one of only 11 schools in the state of Ohio to receive NCTE’s ranking of Excellent, VASJ’s Ventures magazine, under the guidance of Mrs. Dayton and current moderator and VASJ English teacher Mrs. Kristin Scharfeld, was definitely different and most certainly something all of the members should be very proud of.

Click here to view the 2012 edition of Ventures Magazine.

Click here to see the complete list of Ohio winners.


Senior editors of Ventures magazine. Bottom left to right:
Tyann Carter and Maria Dybzinski.
Top left to right: Mychael Primes, Kelly Tecco and Nicole Ouaddaadaa.