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The Sun keeps shining in journalism Allison K. Sampite | Sat, Nov 06 2010 12:00 PM

For the sixth consecutive year Southwestern College's student newspaper, The Sun, was named America's best community college newspaper by the National Newspaper Association in Omaha, Neb.

It was also ranked number 2 in America for all university and college newspapers, following the University of Utah.

Southwestern College journalism professor Max Branscomb has been the college's newspaper advisor for nearly 15 years.

"The Sun is successful because this community keeps sending great students to the journalism program ... because young leaders emerge who take the paper to higher levels," Branscomb said.

Earlier this fall the Society of Professional Journalists presented eight national awards to Southwestern journalism students in Washington D.C. and 21 regional commendations. The Sun was also named America's top community college newspaper by the American Scholastic Press Association and received top honors from the Columbia University Scholastic Press Association, California College Media Association and the Associated Collegiate Press.

Sun Editor-in-chief Diana Inocencio has served as the paper's editor for two semesters and said the recognition provides validation that hard work pays off. "We have a lot of staff members who are extremely passionate about journalism," she said.

Branscomb said the awards show that the journalism students in the community are bright, talented and committed. "They work extremely hard and put in yeoman hours," he said.

At the Southern California Journalism Association of Community Colleges Conference in Fullerton Oct. 15-16, The Sun competed against approximately 65 colleges and took home 39 awards for its newspaper and on-line publication.

"Awards are nice but I think the recognition means we're teaching people about good journalism practices and ethics," Inocencio said.

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