Student Media Won Top National Awards


March 22, 2021 

San José State University’s Student Media Won Top National Awards

San José, Calif. — San José State University’s student media outlets have received top national and statewide awards from two of college media’s most distinguished organizations — the Associated Collegiate Press (ACP) and the California College Media Association (CCMA).

Students from the Spartan Daily student newspaper and Access and The Spear student magazines won 22 awards at the national and state levels at the ACP National College Media Convention, held online March 18-20.

Most notably, the Spartan Daily won the national award for Best Newspaper in the ACP convention’s Best of Show competition – the second consecutive time the Daily has won this national honor. Access was named by CCMA as Best Magazine in California for the first time, and The Spear took second place statewide for Best Digital Magazine.

“This is a great testament to our students’ work,” said Prof. Richard Craig, faculty adviser to the Spartan Daily. “Just being among the best in a competitive state like California is hard enough. To be named as the top newspaper in a nationwide competition twice in a row is amazing.”

The Spartan Daily won three national awards and 12 statewide honors, while Access took four state awards and The Spear won three. The awards showcased the students’ versatility – in addition to the numerous writing awards, five were primarily for design, five were for photography and two more for information graphics. In addition to the three staff awards for best publications, there were group awards for Best Election Coverage, Best Social Media Reporting and Best Special Issue.

“I can't begin to express how proud I am of everyone's hard work and dedication to this newspaper,” said Christian Trujano, Fall 2020 executive editor for the Spartan Daily. “We don't do it for the awards, but the recognition and validation for everyone who poured their time, energy and passion into the Spartan Daily means a lot.”

The ACP national convention, originally scheduled to be held in La Jolla, was moved online because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The statewide CCMA awards are given every year in conjunction with the ACP convention.

Full list of SJSU student awards:

ACP National Best of Show Awards

  • Best of Show: Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Election Coverage: Spartan Daily, second place
  • Best Print Design: Marci Suela, Spartan Daily, sixth place

CCMA Statewide Excellence in Student Media Awards

  • Best Social Media Reporting: Chelsea Nguyen-Fleige, Jesus Tellitud, Bryanna Bartlett, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Editorial Cartoon: Nick Ybarra, first place
  • Best Infographic: Chelsea Nguyen-Fleige, Melody Del Rio, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Overall Newspaper Design: Chelsea Nguyen-Fleige, Marci Suela, Melody Del Rio, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Photo Series: Blue Nguyen, Jesus Tellitud, Yann Lapnet, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Photo Illustration: Marci Suela, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Sports Story: Chris Padilla, Spartan Daily, first place
  • Best Breaking News Story: Olivia Bowman, second place
  • Best Special Issue/Section: Spartan Daily, second place
  • Best News Photograph: Blue Nguyen, Spartan Daily, second place
  • Best COVID-19 Coverage: Gia Pham, Marci Suela, Christian Trujano, John Bricker, Cindy Cuellar, Kunal Mehta, Spartan Daily, third place
  • Best Newspaper Inside Page/Spread Design: Chelsea Nguyen-Fleige, Spartan Daily, third place
  • Best Magazine: Access, first place
  • Best Magazine Photo Series: Jennifer Gonzalez, Access, first place
  • Best Magazine Inside Page/Spread Design: Hoi Shan Cheung, Access, second place
  • Best Magazine Story: Kah Mun Chia, Access, second place
  • Best Digital Magazine: The Spear magazine, second place
  • Best Magazine Photo: Ernie Gonzalez, The Spear, second place
  • Best Magazine Cover Design: Katie Hoedt, The Spear, third place

In 2020, the Spartan Daily also received national Best in Show honors from the Associated Collegiate Press, as well as being named Best Campus Newspaper in California by both the California College Media Association and the California News Publishers Association.

Associated Collegiate Press, with more than 570 members, is a national community of collegiate journalists and collegiate-journalism advisers. The California College Media Association is a statewide organization that promotes education and cooperation among community colleges and universities in California.

About the School of Journalism and Mass Communications, San José State University

San José State University is a major, comprehensive public university located in the center of San José and in the heart of Silicon Valley. SJSU is the oldest state university in California. The School of Journalism and Mass Communications (JMC) was founded in 1936 and has been nationally accredited since 1957 by the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communications. The JMC School embraces the innovative spirit of Silicon Valley, emphasizing cultural and intellectual diversity, the First Amendment, and the free flow of ideas. The School prepares students to excel in advertising, journalism, and public relations by teaching professional skills and advanced information technologies, by developing the capacity for critical and original thinking, and fostering creativity and a passion for communications. Its rigorous standards ensure the top academic programs prioritize and maintain the highest standards for ethical and responsible media instruction. JMC School graduates have consistently become leaders and ground-breakers in traditional, online, new media, and social media communications. Faculty and students work collaboratively with media industry partners Hewlett-Packard, Adobe, Apple, Google, and other emerging Silicon Valley and California businesses focused on top-quality 21st century media products and services. JMC School graduates now dominate the local and regional professional media workforce and provide new ideas, innovative approaches, and exciting new perspectives from a wide range of diverse cultural communities.

Contact: JMC School