Ibis Yearbook to offer weekly prizes for best photo submissions

Image courtesy Morgan Thomson

The Ibis Yearbook is looking for photo submissions from University of Miami students, and they’re offering prizes for the best entries.

The Ibis editor-in-chief, Morgan Thomson, said her team is looking for photos that tie into this year’s theme: what it means to be a Cane.

“This is broader than just attending a football game or homecoming festivities, but supporting the community and taking advantage of all the experiences students are lucky to have going to school in Miami,” said Thomson, a sophomore studying criminology and sociology.

Every week from now until May, students can submit photos to tinyurl.com/ibisphotocontest. The yearbook’s advisor, professor Randy Stano, will judge entries every Tuesday at 5 p.m. Stano will select a new winner every week to receive a $20 gift card to the Rat, and a runner-up to receive a $10 gift card.

But even non-winning entries have a chance to be featured in the yearbook or on one of its social media pages. Thomson said all photos should relate to UM’s students, but can be taken off campus and don’t necessarily have to feature a person.

“Our staff photographers cannot catch everything and we want to feature student photographers as much as possible since the yearbook is by students and for the students,” said Thomson.

Photo submissions will also be judged from a technical standpoint, with lighting, composition and focus all being taken into a consideration. Entries should also include captions that address the who, what, where, when and why of the photo.

Thomson said the competition is a great opportunity for student photographers to make their voices heard. Anthony Bonacolta, president of the UM photography club, said he agrees.

“Student photographers are able to capture the aspects of UM that speak most to them,” said Bonacolta, a senior double majoring in marine science and microbiology. “It’s interesting to see what simple detail or scene in the everyday life of a student inspires that student to photograph it.”

Another incentive: Ibis Yearbook enters all published photographs into competitions such as the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s Gold Circle awards, so student photographers who submit to the contest could win awards in feature photo, sports action photo or any of the other yearbook photo categories.

Thomson said she’s looking forward to seeing what kinds of photos students submit, because it will clue her in to what the UM community wants to see in the yearbook.

“I’d really like to see this contest take off so that student photos will play a greater part in the 2019 Ibis as well as years to come,” she said.