Heathwood Yearbook Earns National Recognition

Thursday, April 15, 2021


The 2020 yearbook “The Highlander” has been nationally recognized by Jostens for outstanding yearbook design, and its cover is included in Jostens' 2021 Look Book, as an example of excellence to inspire yearbook editors across the nation.

Yearbook adviser Cindy Scannella and editors James Lucas, Addie-Grace Cook, and Grayson Miller worked together to create the theme “Blaze Your Trail” for volume 48 of “The Highlander.” After attending  a Jostens workshop in Greenville, S.C., they pulled their inspiration from previous Look books and decided they wanted to do something different by stepping out of their comfort zones.

“For several years, we’ve been putting the Bell Tower on the cover,” said Mrs. Scannella. “It is iconic, but what else could we do?”

Most of the inspiration behind the yearbook, and previous ones, came from Heathwood’s campus. Mrs. Scannella and the staff focused their attention on the 120-acre land, tall pine trees, the trails on campus and a unique color scheme.

Lucas, a Visual Arts Concentration student at Heathwood, came up with the illustrations for the yearbook along with one of the colors.

“We’re a very traditional school in that we have the uniforms, we have the plaid…we have all that,” Mrs. Scannella said. “That’s where James picked the orange, then we came up with how we were going to use it.”

The yearbook also features a green and grey color scheme throughout the book.

“As it turned out, most people loved it,” Mrs. Scannella said. “Most people were shocked by it, but they loved it because it was just different than anything we had done before.”

Mrs. Scannella said choosing orange as a part of the color scheme was tricky because it was out of their comfort zone, but the real challenge was delivering 450 yearbooks during the start of a pandemic. Since the campus was closed, putting yearbooks in the hands of students meant delivering them to homes all over the Midlands.

“There were well over 30 zip codes and you’re covering everything from Little Mountain, to Eastover, to as far away as Sumter,” she said. “I was amazed.”

Mrs. Scannella laughed at the fact that she put at least 600 miles on her car in the course of two days, but says she was glad she did it.

“It is way above and beyond anything of what (staff) should have been asked to do, but they were excited to be able to bring a piece of Heathwood to each family,” she said. “We were very passionate about that.”

When Mrs. Scannella received the phone call about being featured in the 2021 Look Book, she was ‘shocked’ and ‘amazed.’

“You never know what they’re going to like and you’re going up against thousands of other books and they saw something they appreciated,” she said. “It’s an inspiration for somebody else…it blows my mind.”

James Lucas said it was an honor to be featured in the Look Book and a ‘point of pride.’

“As a staff, we look to Jostens' Look Book for inspiration every year,” he said. “It's crazy to think that we'll be included in that process for schools across the nation as they look to next year's Look Book."

Jostens’ Look Book also honors the work of students who helped capture the experiences, stories and achievements featured in yearbooks. Sarah Sausker, Senior Manager of Customer Experience, said the Look Book demonstrates students’ hard work and dedication.

“It’s their collaboration and communication, as well as creative thinking in challenging situations that results in the fine designed shown in this book,” Sausker said.

Mrs. Scannella said the yearbook staff worked hard for the award, "pushing their own boundaries and getting uncomfortable."

“They embraced being uncomfortable and they took a deep breath and said ‘okay, let’s go for it,’” she said. “When you make that commitment, you have to follow through. You have to follow it all the way through all year long, and so commitment and follow-through is why they deserve it.”

Scannella, Lucas, and the yearbook staff have received a copy of Josten’s 2021 Look Book with a plaque and banner to honor and recognize their achievement.