Experience staff takes home awards


Cathie Lawrence

First Place Sports Action photo, originally published April 15, taken by staff member Cathie Lawrence.

The Los Medanos Experience staff won eight awards at the annual Northern Regional Conference of the Journalism Association of Community Colleges. The conference was held at Los Medanos College for the first time Saturday, Oct. 15 in the main College Complex.
Experience Perspectives editor Tyler Mortimore won big, receiving three awards during the conference, including a first place award in a copy-editing contest. Mortimore also went home with a second place award in Critical Review for his piece on the supernatural horror film “The Witch” and an honorable mention on his feature story about the LMC nursing and EMT joint mass casualty event last May.
“It was good — a lot of the lectures were interesting,” said Mortimore. “The contest was fun. Last conference, I did the critical review and it was nerve-wracking writing it on the spot, the standardized test for copy editing was a lot more enjoyable.”
Experience staff photographer Cathie Lawrence also received a first place award for her Sports Action entry, a photo of the girl’s softball team surrounding the home plate after a walk-off win.
“I was thrilled that I won first place. This is a particularly meaningful award for me since over a year ago, I decided to focus on sports photography,” said Lawrence. “It feels really good to have your photography efforts validated and rewarded.”
Lawrence has attended four JACC conferences in the past and has enjoyed each and every one of them.
“I have particularly enjoyed the workshops, seminars and photo contests that are conducted as part of each conference. These events are great learning opportunities for the journalistic novice as well as expert,” added Lawrence. “It was great having the 2016 NorCal conference here at LMC. It was not only convenient for us, but also gave us the opportunity to showcase our campus to other colleges.”
Lissette Urbina, Web editor for the Experience, received an honorable mention for a graphic she had created showing the top ten California transfer destinations in California for LMC students.
“This was my 2nd conference, it went a lot better than I expected. The workshops were helpful. I didn’t think my graphic would win something,” said Urbina.
Former co-editor in chief Damian Lewin also received an honorable mention for opinion writing.
“I didn’t even know I had anything submitted, so it definitely surprised me when I got the text message stating that I had received the honorable mention,” said Lewin. “I wish I could have been there this year. It would have been a nice change to see the conference at LMC.”
Former staff writers Joseph Delano and Brendan Cross shared an honorable mention for Inside Page Layout for their two-page spread previewing the 2015 Oscars.
For the first time, Delano had attended the NorCal Conference as a volunteer instead of as a contestant.
“It was definitely different being a volunteer, but it was fun nonetheless,” said Delano. “Being so involved in the planning of a JACC event was extremely rewarding. Volunteering enabled me to see both sides of the organization.”
Finally, the Experience staff as a whole received a General Excellence award.
The General Excellence award was judged off three issues from the previous spring 2016 semester when Lewin and co-editor Cassandra Dickman were running the Experience.
“I have won other awards at previous conferences, but as editor-in-chief, I didn’t do a lot of writing last semester or the one before it. But the General Excellence was a reward because it represented the paper I managed, and that was one of the hardest things I have ever done,” said Dickman. “I have been to three Nor Cal conferences and two state conferences. I loved that we got to do the conference here on campus. We have such an amazing space and it was fun to show it off to the other colleges. This was my last conference as a community college student and I found it fitting to end it here at the place I consider my home.