In summary

The College Journalism Network brings together student journalists from across the state to collaborate on group reporting projects, pitch and write stories for CalMatters and our media partners, and receive training.

The CalMatters College Journalism Network program has welcomed the newest group of fellows this fall in an exciting election time.

The program is intended to broaden and deepen CalMatters’ higher education coverage, while mentoring a diverse new generation of journalists. 

“With fellows representing the University of California, California State University, community colleges and private colleges, we’re well-positioned to bring more transparency and student voices to the conversation about higher education in California,” said College Journalism Network Editor Felicia Mello, who established the program at CalMatters.

“We’re excited about digging into the biggest issues facing colleges in the state, from affordability to combating campus sexual assault and improving graduation rates.”

The fall 2022 fellows:

Alyssa Story is a senior at Loyola Marymount University majoring in film, media and television studies and journalism. She is former editor-in-chief of The Los Angeles Loyolan and current president of LMU’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. She loves exploring the intersection of pop-culture and politics and is passionate about showing the local impact of national news.

Carmen Gonzalez is a bilingual reporter and radio host based in Los Angeles, California. They strive to make information easily accessible to the people. Her professional career began in high school as a youth reporter for the hyper-local non-profit publication, Boyle Heights Beat. Since then they have worked for YR Media, KCRW, UCLA Labor Center, and The Corsair. Originally from Mexico, she is in her junior year at Long Beach State majoring in journalism.

Itzel Luna is a sophomore at Stanford University, planning to pursue a degree in Public Policy with a minor in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity. She works as the University Desk Editor and Fellowship Coordinator for her university’s student-run paper, The Stanford Daily. She has also previously interned for the LA Times as a Breaking News reporter and KTLA, a Los Angeles based newscast. Originally from the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles, she is a child of Mexican immigrants. Her coverage largely revolves around activism, especially within marginalized communities.

Megan Tagami is a fourth year student studying political science and public affairs at UCLA. She currently serves as content editor for PRIME, Daily Bruin’s quarterly magazine, and has also covered the Features and National News and Higher Education beats. She has formerly interned at the Honolulu Civil Beat, helping to cover K-12 education and other issues.

Oden Taylor is a junior at Cal Poly Humboldt, majoring in journalism with a news concentration. This is his third semester as a CalMatters Fellow. Taylor covers equity, LGBTQ+ issues, and Title IX in higher education. He aspires to work as an equity reporter covering the intersections between identity, equity and policy in California.

Andrea Madison is a student at Diablo Valley College in Pleasant Hill, CA, currently working towards finishing her Associate Degree for Transfer. She plans to apply to St. Mary’s College in Moraga upon completion of her degree. Madison has been on the staff of DVC’s newspaper, The Inquirer, since Spring 2021, and is currently in her third consecutive semester as the publication’s editor-in-chief. She has covered issues facing DVC students and the surrounding community, including the recent administrative leave and subsequent resignation of the Contra Costa Community College District’s (4CD) chancellor, as well as campus events and culture. Placing second in the Profile Feature Story category for a Journalism Association of Community Colleges 2021 NorCal Publication Award for her work with The Inquirer, Madison has also received two awards from the California College Media Association- Second place for Best Breaking News Story and third place for best news series; both awards were for her coverage of 4CD’s recent issues with the chancellor. Madison has been a staff writer for The Orinda News in Orinda for a year, covering topics from pandemic effects upon local schools to local elections, also taking photographs for her articles when needed. The monthly Orinda News has a circulation of 10,000. Hailing from the small rural town of Willits in Northern California, Madison currently resides in Contra Costa County in the Bay Area. Journalism has been an interest and passion of hers for as long as she can remember.

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Sonya builds bridges between the community and CalMatters as director of membership and engagement. Previously she managed engagement, fundraising, marketing, digital storytelling and UX at Voice of OC,...