San Diego City College student media earns top honors at ACP/JACC Conference

City Times Media's Jillian Fortner (right), Susana Serrano and Ingrid Estrella

CTM team takes home 14 state honors, 3 Best in Show

City Times Media, San Diego City College’s award-winning student media platform, took home top honors for online and television news, in addition to magazine, at the ACP Spring National College Media Conference in Long Beach March 3-5.

The conference, which drew 500 students and faculty from two-year and four-year journalism programs nationwide, was co-hosted by the Associated Collegiate Press and Journalism Association of Community Colleges, as well as the California College Media Association.

CTM student journalists also took home top honors in four different individual categories, including a pair of first place feature photo awards for Philip Salata along with video honors for alum Devon Doane and the team of Ingrid Estrella, Jillian Fortner, and Susana Serrano.

CTM’s Jillian Fortner (from right), Ingrid Estrella, Susana Serrano, Kathryn Gray, Jakob McWhinney and Philip Salata represented San Diego City College at the 2022 ACP Spring National College Media Conference March 3-5 in Long Beach, California. Photo courtesy of Susana Serrano

“Other junior college journalism students should visit City Times Media to borrow from what the students at (City) are doing,” a judge wrote in an evaluation shared with CTM. “This school has some amazing talent.”

A team of six student journalists and Digital Journalism assistant professor Nicole Vargas represented San Diego City College at the conference, the first held in-person since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.

The team of students attended training sessions and panels over the three-day conference. They also competed against other California community college journalism students in deadline production exercises.

During the conference, Vargas, who is also student media advisor for CTM, was introduced as the incoming state JACC president. Vargas presented a pair of multimedia journalism training sessions on the web-based graphic design platform Canva, showcasing options for graphics, social media, audio and video. 

Journalism Association of Community Colleges
State Publication Awards
General Excellence, Online –
General Excellence, Magazine – CityScene
First Place, Feature Photo – Philip Salata
First Place, Webcast/Broadcast News – Devon Doane
Second Place, Magazine Illustration – Philip Salata
Second Place, Student Designed Advertisement – Philip Salata
Third Place, Video Journalism – Philip Salata
Fourth Place, Magazine Profile Article – Kathryn Gray
Fourth Place, Video Journalism – Katia Pechenkina, Susana Serrano, Gabriel Schneider, Vicky Pineda
Honorable Mention, Critical Review – Philip Salata
Honorable Mention, Magazine Photo Story-Essay – Kathy Archibald, Kathryn Gray, Jakob McWhinney, Philip Salata

On-the-spot Competition
First Place, Feature Photo – Philip Salata
First Place, Video – Jillian Fortner, Ingrid Estrella, Susana Serrano 
Fourth Place, Copy Editing – Jakob McWhinney

Associated Collegiate Press Awards
Best in show – Two-year programs
First place, Broadcast – Newscene
Third place, Online –
Tenth place, Magazine – CityScene

Click here to view the complete press release.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.