Joe Wyatt
Published September 26, 2017

Success for the Matney Mass Media Program at Amarillo College is positively Current.

The AC program that only last year captured its first-ever National Magazine Pacemaker Award for the Fall 2015 issue of AC Current, the College’s student magazine, is a finalist for the same award in 2017.

thecurrentUnofficially considered by many to be the “Pulitzer Prizes of student journalism,” Pacemaker Awards are administered by the Associated Collegiate Press, which just announced the 2017 magazine finalists. This time, the 2017 Spring issue of AC Current is in the spotlight.


In all, 105 student magazines entered the Pacemaker competition and 32 have been named finalists. All the finalists will be recognized, and 14 of them will be named winners, at the National College Media Convention Oct. 25-29 in Dallas.


The finalists represent 15 states as well as Canada. AC is among nine two-year schools to be named finalists, while twenty-three more are from four-year schools; however, the Pacemaker Awards do not differentiate between the two. AC is in direct competition with high-profile schools like Syracuse University, Southern Methodist University, and Pepperdine University, to name just a few.


“Amarillo College clearly can compete in a national arena with both two- and four-year colleges and universities,” Jill Gibson, coordinator of the Matney Mass Media Program, said. “This nomination reflects the many, many hours our students devoted to every aspect of this magazine – from reporting and writing to layout and design.


“Our magazine is the product of the intense collaboration of students from several programs, really – mass media, graphic design, fine art, and photography,” she said. “I’m extremely proud of them all.”


The Spring 2017 issue of AC Current focuses on the arts and the media, and it urges readers “to nurture your own creativity.”


Students on the magazine’s staff include Jenna Gibson, editor; Destiny Kranthoven, art director; Claire Ekas, assistant editor; Michelle Martinez, graphic artist; and Salvador Gutierrez, page editor. Jill Gibson and Maddisun Fowler served as faculty advisors.