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SMC Student Newspaper Wins 18 Awards in Competition


April 13, 2015

Staff of The Corsair, SMC's student newspaper at the 2015 Journalism Association of Community Colleges where they won 18 awards.

The Santa Monica College student newspaper the Corsair won 18 awards – including online General Excellence and five first place awards – at the 2015 state convention of the Journalism Association of Community Colleges held at the Double Tree Hotel in Sacramento from April 9-11.

Corsair Editor-in-Chief Alci Rengifo won three awards, including first place awards for both critical review and news story. Corsair Photo Editor Brandon Barsugli won two first place awards, for online photo essay and sports action photo. In addition, the team of Claudius West, Kira Vandenbrande, and Juan Lopez won first place in the audio slideshow competition held at the convention.

The Corsair was recognized with a Pacesetter award as one of the top competing schools at the annual convention.

About 450 students from community college journalism programs in California attended the convention. Students participated in several on-the-spot writing, photography and multimedia contests and also attended workshops offered throughout the three-day event. The results of mail-in contests recognizing top work from last year were also announced at the convention.

Saul Rubin is the faculty advisor to the Corsair, and Gerard Burkhart is the photo adviser to the Corsair.

A complete list of SMC awards at the 2015 JACC State Convention follows:

Publications Contests:

First place, Online Photo Essay: Brandon Barsugli

First Place, News Story: Alci Rengifo

First Place, Sports Action Photo: Brandon Barsugli

Fist Place, Critical Review: Alci Rengifo

Second Place, News Story: James Powel

Third Place, Critical Review: Rachel Gianuario

Third Place, Photo Story Essay: Ronja Jansz

General Excellence, Online Journalism: Corsair Staff

On-the-spot Contests:

Pacemaker Award, Corsair Staff

First Place, Team Feature: Claudius West, Juan Lopez and Kira Vandenbrande

Third Place, Feature Photo: Carlos Espinosa

Third Place, Feature Story: Jose Gutierrez

Third Place, Sports Photo: Toby Sandstroem

Honorable Mention, Critical Review: Alci Rengifo

Honorable Mention, News Judgement and Layout: William Miguel

Honorable Mention, News Photo: Kira Vandenbrande

Honorable Mention, Feature Story: Devin Page

For more information on the SMC Corsair, contact Saul Rubin at 310-434-3537 or [email protected] The Corsair is online at


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