Serving Our Peers and Community • South High Community School • Worcester, MA

The Colonel Chronicle


The Colonel Chronicle

The Colonel Chronicle

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The Apricot Journal is Nationally Recognized

Courtesy of The Apricot Journal.
Courtesy of The Apricot Journal.

In 2020, the Worcester Public Schools were shut down due to Covid. However, that did not stop Anya Geist ‘24, and Emma Robeau ‘23, from going forward with an idea to collect and publish creative writing from the South High student body. They began The Apricot Journal, South High’s creative writing journal, and since its online start, the Journal has continued to thrive as a quarterly publication showcasing the school’s creative talent.  


Now led by Anya and co-editor Denisa Iljas ‘24, they decided to apply for national recognition in a contest run by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) after putting “a lot of hard work” into the publication over the last few years according to an interview with Anya.


The Journal staff, consisting of students of all grades, meets every couple of weeks to discuss the submissions they receive.  They figure out which pieces would work and flow well together, and work on designing the magazine as well. Freshmen Madeline Trombly and Iyad Rhaouat carry out the design job; no matter your academic year, you can have a vital role in The Journal.


They also do a lot of outreach by hosting workshops to increase submissions as well as “build[ing] a community.” These happen every so often, usually before submission deadlines. Outreach also goes to teachers as they are always looking for submissions encouraging them to “offer extra credit for submitting.”


According to Anya, in addition to being recognized for their efforts. The contest was also a chance to “show [their] work around” and let others outside the Worcester community know what they do.


After some research, they found a contest from the NCTE that was “accessible” where the process of entering the contest was not too difficult and was free because of their first time participating. Having submitted their 2023 “Best of the Year”  issue, they won a “Distinguished” award for their work. 


Though it is wonderful to be recognized for their work over the last few years, Anya and Denisa are also focused on the future of the Apricot Journal. As seniors, they changed their strategy for running this club this year. They have taken on more of a “mentor role” compared to previous years to prepare the underclassmen staff to continue running the club. They often “walk [them] through the process” of spreading the work of “issues” or “contests and “send[ing] out emails.”


If you would like to be a part of the Journal, reach out to Ms. Eressy. There may be positions available next fall, but even if you can’t become a staff member, there are still many opportunities to get involved by attending workshops or submitting your work.  The Journal accepts submissions throughout the year and you can find the submission form in their Google Classroom or your email.  The Journal even accepts art. As Anya puts it, “you can be just as much a member of our community even if you’re not a staff member.”


Be on the lookout for the next issue of the award-winning Apricot Journal in your email!

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About the Contributor
Jason Murillo
Jason Murillo, Editor-In-Chief
I am excited to be co-editor-in-chief of the newspaper as we launch our brand new website to our peers, our teachers, and those we know in the Worcester Community. I greatly enjoy writing as I see it as a great method of self-expression, and I particularly enjoy it in a journalistic setting. Outside of the newspaper, I am part of the Drama Club, A Capella, and Chorus. I have also published works in The Apricot Journal. Outside of South High, I am a student at The Hanover Theatre Conservatory and am part of their Youth Acting Company. Performance arts is a big interest for me for similar reasons as writing. Feel free to email me at [email protected].
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