"The Corsair" Wins State and PPAGLA Awards

Student Journalists Recognized for Excellence in Journalism and Photojournalism

Jose Lopez, past photo editor of the Santa Monica College student-run newspaper “The Corsair”, won first place in the PPAGLA 2016 Student Photojournalist of the Year contest. He also won first and third place from the Journalism Association of Community Colleges in the Best News Photo category.

April 7, 2017

SANTA MONICA, CA—Santa Monica College (SMC) is pleased to announce that its student-run newspaper The Corsair and student journalists have won several awards from the Journalism Association of Community Colleges (JACC) and the Press Photographers Association of Greater Los Angeles (PPAGLA).

The Corsair newsroom won 6 awards from the JACC at its state convention in Sacramento on March 31, including general excellence for the print and online editions. About 40 community colleges competed for the JACC awards, which represents the best of student journalism from California community colleges.

Additionally, the Press Photographers Association of Greater Los Angeles (PPAGLA) announced on April 1 that past Corsair photo editor Jose Lopez won first place in the PPAGLA 2016 Student Photojournalist of the Year contest; current Corsair photo co-editor Daniel Bowyer was runner-up.

Lopez documented the rallies and demonstrations related to the 2016 presidential campaign, sometimes working 22-hour days and following protest marches for miles. Last fall, Lopez won an Award of Excellence in the College Photographer of the Year (CPOY) international student photojournalism competition in the Spot News category.

“I enjoy the high pace of it. The energy really captivates me,” said Lopez. “It’s powerful… showing people what’s really going on out there.”

In the JACC contest, Lopez won first and third place for best news photo. The Corsair also won first place in the photo story/essay category and fourth place for the online photo story category in addition to the awards for general excellence online and for general excellence in print.

“We are excited to see our journalism students recognized by such esteemed organizations in the journalism industry for their exceptional work,” said SMC Journalism Professor Ashanti Blaize-Hopkins, the current Corsair advisor. “It's a testament to their dedication and hard work in the classroom and as staff at The Corsair newspaper."

SMC Journalism Professor Saul Rubin advised the Corsair in 2016. SMC Photojournalism Professor Gerard Burkhart serves as the photo advisor.

The Corsair staff produces a weekly newspaper in the spring and fall semesters and also maintains an online news site.

Santa Monica College is a California Community College accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).

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