The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The Channels editors reminisce about the spring 2022 semester

Rodrigo Hernandez
From left, Photo Editor August Lawrence, Sports Editor Eric Evelhoch, Editor-in-Chief Rodrigo Hernandez and Features Editor Bianca Ascencio on Wednesday, April 27 at the Winslow-Maxwell Overlook at City College in Santa Barbara, Calif. The Channels Editorial Board moves forward while looking back at the spring semester, with Ascencio returning as editor-in-chief for fall 2022.

Another semester has come and gone, part online and part in person, and for many editors this will be their last term. Every semester offers new challenges and opportunities for Channels staffers to learn and extend their journalistic knowledge, and this semester was no different. Through the highs, the lows and everything in between, The Channels Editorial Board shares their most memorable moments of the spring 2022 semester.


Rodrigo Hernandez, Editor-in-Chief 

The past five semesters I’ve spent at The Channels have been the most formative experiences of my life thus far. Saying goodbye after a year of being editor-in-chief is a bit surreal since I started as a staff writer in the spring of 2020. My first semester in the online newspaper was rattled by the COVID-19 pandemic, along with the rest of the world. Reporting from home was a challenge that our past editorial boards quickly adapted to, but it is refreshing to be back in person — even if we have to wear masks. The first five weeks of this spring 2022 semester were spent online before reporting back on campus. Although it may have felt daunting, having the past experiences of online reporting made for a seamless transition when returning back to the newsroom.

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While every semester is full of challenges, such as not having a news editor and having most editors take on double duty, I can honestly say that this team was the most efficient crew I’ve worked with. Having only three other editors to copy edit stories last semester caused long hours in the newsroom, often ending at 3 or 4 p.m. Adding four copy editors to our production this semester greatly improved our productivity, ending at 1:30 or 2 p.m. at the latest. Along with the progress in production, each of our writers were able to tackle their beats with confidence and had the opportunity to take photos or be a part of a Voices video. My biggest highlight of this semester was attending the JACC Conference at Long Beach and being able to get closer with my team, learn from fellow student journalists and pros in the field, and have The Channels take home 16 awards overall. It was my second time ever shooting a baseball game, and I ended up taking first place in the sports photo competition, second place in feature writing and honorable mention for feature photo. As someone who doesn’t follow sports, it definitely came as a surprise. Being able to take more photos this semester is also another highlight of mine since it was a skill I didn’t know I had but wanted to sharpen. 

Now that I am graduating and heading to CSUN in the fall, it gives me great pleasure to announce that Features Editor Bianca Ascencio will be the incoming editor-in-chief for The Channels, with an all-female editorial board. My goal as an editor was to cultivate an environment where everyone felt like they were not just part of a class, but of a team where anyone can be themselves and produce phenomenal content while doing so. It was an honor to hold the responsibility of this title for a year and to continue the decades-long legacy of The Channels. 


August Lawrence, Photo Editor

Having attended The Channels for six semesters, I can safely say I’ve made some worthwhile memories with my time here. From covering my first Associated Student Government meetings and jazz shows way back in my first semester as a staff writer, to being sent out as Photo Editor to capture events for full photo essays. The opportunities and learning moments I have experienced over my time have been amazing and is something I wouldn’t trade for the world. This semester, partly online and partly in person, forced me to learn to quickly adapt and change with the environment. The people I’ve met because of The Channels have also changed my life. I’d like to thank Channels Lab Tech Assistant John Rose for mostly always being willing to sit through my ignorant camera questions and for almost always being willing to help. I’d also like to thank Darleene Principe, Channels advisor, for being so kind and open-minded with me and my learning style. I’ve thrived more in these past two semesters more than any other in my educational career. This past semester has also been special partly because it was my last as a Channels staff member. I will miss the daily check-ins with fellow students and the energy high you get after seeing your work’s been published. I’m excited for my future but grateful for all my experiences at The Channels student newspaper. 



Eric Evelhoch, Sports Editor

I am beyond excited to leave The Channels in the hands of so many talented writers and editors. One of my favorite things this semester has been seeing how our writers have stood up to the challenge of being journalists, and not only accepted the mantle but embraced it. I am glad that we have leaders from every season of sports who are ready to tell the tale for the squads they’ve covered.

Staff writer Ally Budde has transitioned from being a middle-block defender to a writer who stops opponents so she can restart them and tell their stories, all while adding an additional analytical lens. Robert Gormish, returning writer, has learned how going play-by-play can create even more impactful game stories.

We as a sports staff have embraced being able to recap multiple-day events so we can credit individuals like Ensley Letterman and Irey Sandholt for their top individual finishes. We acknowledge teams like track and field, women’s swimming and diving, and the golf squads as they continue to set the standard for their sport. We’ve given the game coverage people expect from The Channels but also have had stuff on the Rebound that is the kind of all-encompassing coverage that the teams deserve.

Sports at City College have been in a weird spot for the past several seasons, no thanks to the difficulties imposed by the pandemic. Yet, the student-athletes and squads have prospered and continue to put the Vaqueros in a prominent place.

It’s been an honor to cover City College sports.



Bianca Ascencio, Features Editor

This semester was by far one of my most memorable on The Channels and I am so grateful to have had such a motivated team. I got to take on the role of arts & entertainment and features editor this semester and found my passion for feature writing. With that, this semester I got to make the voices of unsung heroes at City College heard with Vital Vaqueros. This was important to me because I think that during the pandemic a lot of people were asked to step up and take on many roles to bloom City College’s potential. I am very grateful for that experience and for the writers who contributed to that section.

Another highlight of my semester was being able to attend my first JACC in Long Beach. It was such a fun experience and I think that really helped with team bonding with those who went. It made us all closer and also made me appreciate my team because of the way they comforted me after not winning an award. Another first for me was being on a Voices team with Rodrigo and Eric. It was a super cool experience because in my three semesters prior I never did one. I am super proud of the team especially after we all went through our own personal hard times it was nice knowing that the news team was always behind us and there to talk. I really took not only my mental health but the writers’ and other editors’ mental health into consideration during this semester and did the usual “vibe checks.” This team was able to produce under pressure and we came out on top, even after having to start the first five weeks of the semester online. 

After this semester I will be graduating with my degree in Liberal Arts but after a lot of encouragement from my advisor, family and friends, I will be returning to The Channels in the fall as the editor-in-chief. I am looking forward to what the fall brings with a brand-new team. 

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