URI alumni magazine wins two international awards

QuadAngles lauded by Council for Advancement and Support of Education

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Pippa Jack, left, editor-in-chief of URI’s alumni magazine, QuadAngles, and writer Nicole Maranhas, display the magazine that featured an award-winning cover story. URI photo by Nora Lewis.

KINGSTON, R.I., June 22, 2017 — The University of Rhode Island has won two international awards for stories featured in its quarterly magazine, QuadAngles, from the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE).

More than 710 institutions from countries as diverse as Australia, Switzerland, South Africa and the United Kingdom took part in CASE’s 2017 Circle of Excellence awards, submitting more than 3,350 entries in nearly 100 categories.

Both awards honor the writing of URI Alumni Relations staff member Nicole Maranhas of Bristol, who has been writing for the University since 2015.

“A key part of our mission is to improve the overall quality of QuadAngles and Nicole’s contributions have helped to elevate this important publication,” said URI’s Executive Director of External Relations and Communications Kelly Mahoney. “We’re continuing that mission with a renewed focus on great storytelling, photography and illustration, bringing our 125,000 readers a window into the lives and achievements of URI’s alumni, faculty and students. We are fortunate to have excellent stories and impressive people to feature and we look forward to using the magazine as a means to instill pride in our readers.”

The story “Life in Black and White” (the cover feature for the Winter 2016 issue) won bronze in the Feature Writing: Profile category. The article tells the incredible story of Suzanne Leclerc-Madlala ’78, a Cumberland, R.I., native who became part of South Africa’s first legally married mixed race couple, in the process forcing the apartheid-era government to institute reforms. Leclerc-Madlala is now a senior anthropologist for the Global Health Bureau at the U.S. Agency for International Development in Washington, D.C. Maranhas interviewed family members while on their annual summer vacation to Rhode Island and extensively by telephone and email.

There were 155 entries in the profile-writing category; other winners included the universities of Waterloo and Manitoba in Canada, and Clemson and Pennsylvania State universities in the U.S.

Maranhas also took bronze in the Periodical Staff Writing category for five articles she wrote in 2016: “Life in Black and White,” “The Martians,” “Woolly Tale,” “Sea Star,” and “Human Zoo.” “Whether it’s preparing for life on Mars or ‘woolly’ recollections of preparing the University’s mascot for game time, University of Rhode Island writer Nicole Maranhas demonstrates great skill in profiling alumni. Her stories share how URI graduates are committed to improving life close to home…and beyond,” wrote the judges in their comments.

The other winners in the Staff Writing category were Columbia, Emory, and Stanford universities.

“I’m so inspired by the URI community,” said Maranhas, who is a former magazine editor and adjunct English lecturer who works at the University’s Alumni Association and College of Pharmacy. “It’s been an honor to help share its stories. It is also rewarding to know Suzanne Leclerc-Madlala’s story resonated with readers, as she and her family were so generous with their time and memories.”

“Nicole and I first worked together at Rhode Island Monthly magazine, where we both learned so much,” said QuadAngles Editor-in-Chief Pippa Jack, a resident of Wakefield. “She has been an enormous asset and her writing has gone from strength to strength. I am beyond thrilled for her at this well deserved recognition. I also want to thank our alumni and faculty for sharing their wonderful research and stories. We hope people continue to send story ideas to pjack@uri.edu. ”