For more than 15 years Santa Ana College’s student newspaper, el Don, has competed for state and national honors against the nations most prestigious journalism schools. Yet consistently Santa Ana College journalism students have prevailed over four-year colleges and universities.
The el Don recently received its 13th Associated Collegiate Press National Pacemaker Award considered the “Pulitzer Prize,” of college journalism, and its 15th ACP/ College Media Advisers First Place Best of Show award. The honors were given during the 85th annual ACP/ CMA National College Media Convention, held from Oct. 25-29, in St. Louis.
The professional training and preparation SAC journalism students receive was demonstrated by the current el Don staff winning First Place Best of Show for the Oct. 16, 2006, issue. In other honors, el Don won First Place for Nameplate Design in the Best of Collegiate Design contest, artist Matt Hupp won third place in the Informational Graphic category, and Martin Cisneros placed fourth in News Photography.
Journalism department chair and el Don adviser C.W. Little said, “I am often asked how we maintain the high level of excellence in our program. The answer is simple, hard work and dedication.”
“I am so proud of our student journalists and their commitment to each other and to the ideals of journalism. Their efforts sometimes go unnoticed, but neither by me nor the professionals who judge them,” Little said.
Prior to the ACP/CMA convention, the Columbia Scholastic Press Association honored el Don with not one, but two College Newspaper Gold Crown Awards, which nationally recognizes the highest academic merits of collegiate journalism. SAC was the only community college in the United States to receive the Gold Crowns at the CSPA annual awards ceremony, this past March. el Don was also recognized with the coveted College Media Advisers Apple Award, distinguishing the SAC publication as the best community college tabloid newspaper in America.
In addition, el Don currently holds the following national titles: 2006 National Community College Newspaper of the Year and the 2005 California Newspaper Publishers Association First Place Community College Newspaper.
The ACP began in 1921 and is the oldest and largest national membership organization for college student journalists. Since its inception, it has offered members resources to help their publications - newspapers, yearbooks, magazines, broadcast programs, and online publications - improve. More than 20,000 students are staff members at ACP member publications.
The CSPA is a program of the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University in the city of New York. The highest awards given to publications by the CSPA each year are the Crown Awards, given to the top two percent of publications evaluated from the prior academic year.
For information on the Santa Ana College Journalism Program or el Don, please call (714) 564-5616.