Joe Wyatt
Published October 18, 2021

Amarillo College Student Media has received two prestigious national awards for the student magazine “The Current.” The awards were announced during the virtual Associated Collegiate Press/College Media Association Fall National Convention held Oct. 14 and 15.


The Summer 2020 issue of “The Current” received a Pacemaker Award from the Associated Collegiate Press. This award, commonly referred to as “the Pulitzer Prize of collegiate journalism” recognizes the best student work from among the organization’s more than 570 member colleges and universities. Entries are judged by teams of professionals based upon coverage and content, quality of writing and reporting, leadership, design, photography and graphics. This is the fourth Pacemaker Award that “The Current” has received.

Lauren Ebben, editor of the Summer 2020 issue, said this award is especially meaningful since the entire magazine was created while working remotely.

“This is an amazing win for Amarillo College Student Media and I am incredibly proud and honored to be part of this publication,” Ebben said. “Our intention was to give people in the AC community an outlet to say what they were feeling during this challenging time. We were able to capture a snapshot that documented those feelings and offered a bit of positivity.”

Other members of Ebben’s team included Jenna Gibson, art director, Caylee Hanna, page designer and Stormie Sanchez, writer.

One day following the Pacemaker win, the Spring 2021 issue of “The Current” received a first place Pinnacle Award from the College Media Association. The issue, which focused on the theme of creativity, was recognized as “Two-Year Feature Magazine of the Year.” This is the third Pinnacle Award “The Current” has received and the first Pinnacle for the edition’s co-editors Taylor Burton and Eden Waters.

“We are humbled and honored by this recognition,” said Jill Gibson, chair of the AC media, arts and communication department. “The fact that our students’ work shines in a national arena shows the strength of the education they are receiving at AC.”

Gibson, Maddisun Fowler, student media coordinator, and Derek Weathersbee, graphic design instructor, advise the magazine staffs. The next issue will be released in December and will celebrate the 50th anniversary of “The Current” magazine.