Journalism wins 19 awards

 Experience staff honored at NorCal Conference with 19 awards


Members of the Experience staff at the conclusion of the JACC NorCal Conference Nov. 16. From left: Campus Editor Hillary Hetrick, Features Editor Spencer Batute, Editor in Chief Krys Shahin, Sports Editor Joseph Johnson, Campus Editor Chuck Reed, Features Editor Katie Loughran, Staff Reporter and Photographer Jordyn Toscano and Perspectives Editor Adriana Ivanoff. – Photo taken by a passerby

The Los Medanos College Experience won 19 awards in the annual Northern Regional Publications and On-the-Spot contests of the Journalism Association of Community Colleges, awarded at the regional journalism conference Nov. 16 at San Jose State University.

The weekly student newspaper won General Excellence in the Publications Contest for its print edition published during the 2018-19 academic year. In addition, 11 current and former staff members won awards in a variety of writing, photography and design contests.

Former Photo Editor and current correspondent Anthony Martinez won five awards, two third-place honors and three honorable mentions, for his photographic work. He won third place in Feature Photo for an image at a local coffee house, and in Photo Illustration for an image of immigrants with the flags of their countries superimposed over their faces.  He also won honorable mention in News Photo for a picture of the Young Americans For Freedom club members demolishing a segment of an anti-socialism wall they built that was inspired by the Berlin Wall; in Sports Action Photo for a picture of a baseball player sliding into base, and in Environmental Portrait for an image shot at an interesting angle of an LMC pitcher.

Former Co-Editor in Chief Perry Continente, who transferred to CSU Long Beach, won four awards for his work last year: first place in Feature Photo for an image of a duck on campus and two honorable mentions, one in News Photo for a drone shot of the lake and another in Critical Review for a review of a brewery for Oktoberfest. In addition, Continente shared first place honors with his Co-Editor in Chief Lilly Montero, who also transferred to CSU Long Beach, in the Category of Front Page Layout. Montero also won third place for a Feature Story contest entry on goat yoga.

Other Publications Contest winners include:

  • Former Perspective Editor Elizabeth McLauren, second place Feature Story for an article on the LMC Nature Preserve.
  • Current Experience correspondent and former Sports Editor Editor Jesus Cano, third place Sports Game Story for an article on the LMC soccer team winning its first Bay Valley Conference title.
  • Experience correspondent Isabelle Ortiz, third place in Illustration for a drawing of a nursing mother that accompanied a story on the need for a lactation room at LMC.
  • Current Perspectives Editor Dante Harrold and former Perspectives Editor Nick Campbell, both won honorable mention in Column Writing for the overall quality of their body of work for the Experience.
  • Former Experience photographer Jacob Mejia won honorable mention in Sports Feature Photo for an image of the soggy conditions of the softball field last spring.
Jordyn and Spencer
Experience staff show off their awards: Staff Reporter and Photographer Jordyn Toscano won first place in On-the-Spot Features Photo and Features Editor Spencer Batute won fourth place in in On-the-Spot Opinion Writing. – Photo taken by Features Editor Katie Loughran

Students attending the annual regional conference also had the opportunity to compete in several on-the-spot contests designed to give them a tight deadline experience in producing journalistic content.

  • First-semester Journalism student Jordyn Toscano won first place honors in On-the-Spot Feature Photo for a photograph of a student reading a newspaper.
  • Experience Features Editor Spencer Batute won fourth place in On-the-Spot Opinion Writing for his commentary on the keynote speech of filmmaker Alexander Shebanow, who created "Fail State," a documentary on the student loan debt crisis.

Experience adviser Cindy McGrath praised the work of the LMC student journalists who won awards at the conference, and emphasized that their pursuit and achievement of excellence continues.

“The staff is filled with dedicated and creative students, and I am proud of the work they do every week,” said McGrath. “Awards are a nice acknowledgment of their efforts, but the real prize is the experience that will prepare them for transfer to four-year schools, or for jobs as print, online or broadcast journalists when they leave LMC.”


To learn more about the journalism program visit their web page

PRESS RELEASE: Nov. 20, 2019

For information, contact Adviser Cindy McGrath, 925-473-7827