Created By: The AJC + The Nation

The Students

  @thesunherself   Savannah West is an Atlanta-based journalist from Chicago, IL. As a senior, Journalism major at Clark Atlanta University, West serves as Campus Editor-at-Large for the Huffington Post and Editor-in-Chief of The Odyssey Online. She intends to use her platform as a writer to advocate on behalf of underserved communities and amplify unheeded voices. Savannah interned for CBS News in New York the summer before her senior year as the press office intern and is currently the news intern for CBS46-WGCL. She has also participated in investigative reporting initiatives with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSBTV-2. Savannah served on the executive board of CAU’s Speech and Debate Team and was named a 2016 GIFA State Champion. She has received accolades and recognition for her public speaking, political debate and writing on the national, regional and state levels. Savannah has dedicated her collegiate career to the pursuit of higher education, the protection of citizen journalism, digital storytelling and promoting a new generation of social activism. She never misses an opportunity to serve as an ambassador for her university. She utilizes speaking engagements to act as an advocate for Black colleges, including the 2016 ACRL Excellence Award Ceremony where she accepted the award on behalf of the entire Atlanta University Center. She believes that investing in young journalists secures a promise of credible reporting in the future and provides an opportunity for all stories to be told, creating equity in the profession. Savannah considers herself to be a liberal Womanist who supports intersectional feminism, social activism, and anything that is pro-black. Her favorite quote is "Until the lion learns to write, the story will always glorify the hunter.".

@thesunherself

Savannah West is an Atlanta-based journalist from Chicago, IL. As a senior, Journalism major at Clark Atlanta University, West serves as Campus Editor-at-Large for the Huffington Post and Editor-in-Chief of The Odyssey Online. She intends to use her platform as a writer to advocate on behalf of underserved communities and amplify unheeded voices. Savannah interned for CBS News in New York the summer before her senior year as the press office intern and is currently the news intern for CBS46-WGCL. She has also participated in investigative reporting initiatives with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and WSBTV-2. Savannah served on the executive board of CAU’s Speech and Debate Team and was named a 2016 GIFA State Champion. She has received accolades and recognition for her public speaking, political debate and writing on the national, regional and state levels. Savannah has dedicated her collegiate career to the pursuit of higher education, the protection of citizen journalism, digital storytelling and promoting a new generation of social activism. She never misses an opportunity to serve as an ambassador for her university. She utilizes speaking engagements to act as an advocate for Black colleges, including the 2016 ACRL Excellence Award Ceremony where she accepted the award on behalf of the entire Atlanta University Center. She believes that investing in young journalists secures a promise of credible reporting in the future and provides an opportunity for all stories to be told, creating equity in the profession. Savannah considers herself to be a liberal Womanist who supports intersectional feminism, social activism, and anything that is pro-black. Her favorite quote is "Until the lion learns to write, the story will always glorify the hunter.".

  @noelledl_   Noëlle Lilley is currently a student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. She is majoring in journalism with an emphasis in broadcasting and a minor in film and media production. Most recently, Noëlle pent the summer of 2017 working as a broadcast reporter for Cronkite News/Arizona PBS in Washington, D.C. This position required her to attend press conferences and committee hearings around our nation’s capital, interview Congressman and other politicians, and report on breaking news and national events, alike. One of the biggest news stories she had the opportunity to break was the 2017 Congressional Baseball Game shooting where she was the only member of the press at the time that shots were fired as the Republican team practiced in Alexandria, Virginia. Additionally, she has worked as an opinion columnist, arts and entertainment reporter, and podcaster for her university’s award-winning newspaper, The State Press. She has also worked as on-air talent and as off-air production for a variety of shows on my university’s award-winning radio station, Blaze Radio 1330 A.M. In the fall of her senior year, she worked as a production intern for KPNX 12 News in Phoenix, Arizona. She currently works as an investigative and sustainability reporter for Cronkite News/Arizona PBS and holds the position of Vice President for her college’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. Noëlle enjoys creative writing, Slurpees, musicals, Back To The Future, and social justice.

@noelledl_

Noëlle Lilley is currently a student at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University. She is majoring in journalism with an emphasis in broadcasting and a minor in film and media production. Most recently, Noëlle pent the summer of 2017 working as a broadcast reporter for Cronkite News/Arizona PBS in Washington, D.C. This position required her to attend press conferences and committee hearings around our nation’s capital, interview Congressman and other politicians, and report on breaking news and national events, alike. One of the biggest news stories she had the opportunity to break was the 2017 Congressional Baseball Game shooting where she was the only member of the press at the time that shots were fired as the Republican team practiced in Alexandria, Virginia. Additionally, she has worked as an opinion columnist, arts and entertainment reporter, and podcaster for her university’s award-winning newspaper, The State Press. She has also worked as on-air talent and as off-air production for a variety of shows on my university’s award-winning radio station, Blaze Radio 1330 A.M. In the fall of her senior year, she worked as a production intern for KPNX 12 News in Phoenix, Arizona. She currently works as an investigative and sustainability reporter for Cronkite News/Arizona PBS and holds the position of Vice President for her college’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. Noëlle enjoys creative writing, Slurpees, musicals, Back To The Future, and social justice.

  @arcwrites   Aaron Ross Coleman is a freelance journalist from Atlanta, Georgia focused on the intersection of economics and racial inequality. Based in New York City, he is a Marjorie Deane Fellow studying Business and Economic Reporting in New York University’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute. Aaron has his B.A. in Political Science from Fort Valley State University and has researched at UCLA's Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies. There, his work focused on Civil Rights era direct action advocacy for economic equity, with a particular focus on the Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s 1968 Poor People's campaign. Following the completion of his undergraduate degree, Aaron served an Americorps year working in southeast Washington, DC with the education non-profit City Year DC. There, he was awarded the WilmerHale Civic Innovation Award for his efforts to improve access to healthy foods for students. Recently, Aaron's work has covered the racial implications of long-term unemployment, gentrification, Black Lives Matter economic policy, and the legacy of redlining. His writing can be found on CNBC.com, Rewire, Blavity, HuffPost BlackVoices, and Medium. When he isn't writing, Aaron enjoys reading, running, listening to hip-hop, and eating chicken wings with french fries and bleu cheese.

@arcwrites

Aaron Ross Coleman is a freelance journalist from Atlanta, Georgia focused on the intersection of economics and racial inequality. Based in New York City, he is a Marjorie Deane Fellow studying Business and Economic Reporting in New York University’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute. Aaron has his B.A. in Political Science from Fort Valley State University and has researched at UCLA's Ralph J. Bunche Center for African American Studies. There, his work focused on Civil Rights era direct action advocacy for economic equity, with a particular focus on the Southern Christian Leadership Conference’s 1968 Poor People's campaign. Following the completion of his undergraduate degree, Aaron served an Americorps year working in southeast Washington, DC with the education non-profit City Year DC. There, he was awarded the WilmerHale Civic Innovation Award for his efforts to improve access to healthy foods for students. Recently, Aaron's work has covered the racial implications of long-term unemployment, gentrification, Black Lives Matter economic policy, and the legacy of redlining. His writing can be found on CNBC.com, Rewire, Blavity, HuffPost BlackVoices, and Medium. When he isn't writing, Aaron enjoys reading, running, listening to hip-hop, and eating chicken wings with french fries and bleu cheese.

 
  Candace King   Candace King is a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her work examines portrayals of Black women in television. Prior to her enrollment in graduate school, she worked for NBC News and MSNBC in New York during the 2016 political cycle. During that time, she also pitched and wrote stories for NBCBLK, a digital vertical of NBCNews.com devoted to Black news and culture. As a BLK contributor, she documented Black activists’ push for a #BlackLivesMatter agenda in the 2016 political campaigns and reflected on the one year anniversary of Michael Brown’s death. Most recently, Candace received a News and Documentary Emmy award for her contributions at “The Rachel Maddow Show” to expose the water crisis affecting a predominantly Black community in Flint, Michigan. A Martin Luther King Jr. Scholar, she studied Journalism and Politics at Ithaca College in upstate New York. During her senior year at IC, she co-founded and co-executive produced a sociopolitical news show titled, “The RoundTable.” Candace is humbled to be a part of the 2018 class of Black on Campus and especially excited to grow under the guidance of two dynamic and incredible Black women like Dr. Melissa Harris Perry and Dr. Sherri Williams.

Candace King

Candace King is a graduate student at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Her work examines portrayals of Black women in television. Prior to her enrollment in graduate school, she worked for NBC News and MSNBC in New York during the 2016 political cycle. During that time, she also pitched and wrote stories for NBCBLK, a digital vertical of NBCNews.com devoted to Black news and culture. As a BLK contributor, she documented Black activists’ push for a #BlackLivesMatter agenda in the 2016 political campaigns and reflected on the one year anniversary of Michael Brown’s death. Most recently, Candace received a News and Documentary Emmy award for her contributions at “The Rachel Maddow Show” to expose the water crisis affecting a predominantly Black community in Flint, Michigan. A Martin Luther King Jr. Scholar, she studied Journalism and Politics at Ithaca College in upstate New York. During her senior year at IC, she co-founded and co-executive produced a sociopolitical news show titled, “The RoundTable.” Candace is humbled to be a part of the 2018 class of Black on Campus and especially excited to grow under the guidance of two dynamic and incredible Black women like Dr. Melissa Harris Perry and Dr. Sherri Williams.

  @_AlexisWasHere   Alexis Gravely was born and raised in Martinsville, VA, a rural area in the southwest part of the state. She graduated from Bassett High School and Patrick Henry Community College in 2015 before heading to Charlottesville to attend the University of Virginia. At UVA, Alexis is an Echols Scholar in her junior year working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies and Master’s degree in Elementary Education. Alexis has loved journalism since she was young and became heavily involved with UVA’s independent, student-run newspaper, The Cavalier Daily, shortly after arriving to the university. During her time at The Cavalier Daily, Alexis has been a writer for the News and Life sections, a Senior Associate Editor for the News section, and currently serves as the paper’s Assistant Managing Editor. Alexis also interned at WDBJ7 in Roanoke, VA during the summer of 2017. Her most notable work as a journalist was her coverage of the August 2017 white supremacist rallies in Charlottesville as a reporter and photographer, which was detailed in several media outlets, including Poynter. Alexis’s other involvements include co-president of Active Minds at UVA and parliamentarian of the UVA chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. Alexis also enjoys tennis, kayaking, and playing with her rescued beagle, Echo.

@_AlexisWasHere

Alexis Gravely was born and raised in Martinsville, VA, a rural area in the southwest part of the state. She graduated from Bassett High School and Patrick Henry Community College in 2015 before heading to Charlottesville to attend the University of Virginia. At UVA, Alexis is an Echols Scholar in her junior year working towards a Bachelor’s degree in Media Studies and Master’s degree in Elementary Education. Alexis has loved journalism since she was young and became heavily involved with UVA’s independent, student-run newspaper, The Cavalier Daily, shortly after arriving to the university. During her time at The Cavalier Daily, Alexis has been a writer for the News and Life sections, a Senior Associate Editor for the News section, and currently serves as the paper’s Assistant Managing Editor. Alexis also interned at WDBJ7 in Roanoke, VA during the summer of 2017. Her most notable work as a journalist was her coverage of the August 2017 white supremacist rallies in Charlottesville as a reporter and photographer, which was detailed in several media outlets, including Poynter. Alexis’s other involvements include co-president of Active Minds at UVA and parliamentarian of the UVA chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. Alexis also enjoys tennis, kayaking, and playing with her rescued beagle, Echo.

  @devancole1   Devan Cole is a fourth-year student at The George Washington University where he studies Journalism and Mass Communication. Devan currently interns at CNN where he reports on breaking news for CNNPolitics.com. Previously, he served as a news desk intern at the BBC in Washington, where he gathered news for the bureau and produced content published on the BBC’s website. Prior to that, he worked as an editorial intern at the Washington City Paper, where he wrote stories for paper’s print and online editions. His most memorable assignment at the City Paper was a feature on the queer, Washington-based activist group that famously staged dance parties outside the homes of Ivanka Trump and Mike Pence. At GW, Devan is the vice-president of the school’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. He previously served as the chapter’s president; along with planning events and mentoring underclassmen, he organized a trip to New Orleans for the members to attend the 2017 NABJ convention. Devan also serves in GW’s student association, where he oversees the association’s $1.8 million budget. Before he was elected to the association, Devan was a member of the Black Student Union’s governing board. From 2015 to 2016, Devan worked as a processing assistant for the D.C. Africana Archival Project, a GW-led initiative to preserve research materials that document the history of the African diaspora in Washington. A native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Devan has enjoyed making Washington his home over the past few years. In his free time, he avails himself of the many diverse restaurants in the city, and finds pleasure in stumbling upon new exhibits at Washington museums. Devan plans to have a career in journalism after graduating from GW. It is his hope that he can report on national issues concerning people of color and LGBTQ+ folks.

@devancole1

Devan Cole is a fourth-year student at The George Washington University where he studies Journalism and Mass Communication. Devan currently interns at CNN where he reports on breaking news for CNNPolitics.com. Previously, he served as a news desk intern at the BBC in Washington, where he gathered news for the bureau and produced content published on the BBC’s website. Prior to that, he worked as an editorial intern at the Washington City Paper, where he wrote stories for paper’s print and online editions. His most memorable assignment at the City Paper was a feature on the queer, Washington-based activist group that famously staged dance parties outside the homes of Ivanka Trump and Mike Pence. At GW, Devan is the vice-president of the school’s chapter of the National Association of Black Journalists. He previously served as the chapter’s president; along with planning events and mentoring underclassmen, he organized a trip to New Orleans for the members to attend the 2017 NABJ convention. Devan also serves in GW’s student association, where he oversees the association’s $1.8 million budget. Before he was elected to the association, Devan was a member of the Black Student Union’s governing board. From 2015 to 2016, Devan worked as a processing assistant for the D.C. Africana Archival Project, a GW-led initiative to preserve research materials that document the history of the African diaspora in Washington. A native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, Devan has enjoyed making Washington his home over the past few years. In his free time, he avails himself of the many diverse restaurants in the city, and finds pleasure in stumbling upon new exhibits at Washington museums. Devan plans to have a career in journalism after graduating from GW. It is his hope that he can report on national issues concerning people of color and LGBTQ+ folks.

 
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@Bri_Reddick

I am a current junior at Wake Forest University studying Communications and Politics. During my time here I have participated in many social justice initiatives, including a week-long service trip on LGBTQ advocacy and Branches, a social justice retreat. Previously, I worked with The Anna Julia Cooper Center on an independent research project on gentrification in Winston-Salem. Most recently, I worked as an education policy intern at The Century Foundation where I researched education disparities amongst marginalized students. Currently I am a student employee at the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at Wake Forest University, where I plan and participate in diversity education workshops for students on campus. Attending a predominantly white institution forced me to confront my blackness, and learn to celebrate it rather than hide it through assimilation. I believe that in times as politically tumultuous as these, we need intersectional stories of black millennials at the forefront because we are the future. I am so excited to be apart of the Black on Campus cohort and to have a platform to center black college students such as myself.

 

 
  @deasia_paige   DeAsia Paige Sutgrey (preferred writing name DeAsia Paige) is an emerging journalist whose writing reflects the intersection of sports, music, culture, and black womanhood. She is a sophomore studying journalism and African and African-American studies at the University of Kansas with an expected graduation date of May 2020. Since her time at the University of Kansas, DeAsia has been involved in a couple of opportunities that have influenced her journalistic career path. She was invited to participate in undergraduate research during her freshman year with the Emerging Scholars program on campus. Her research, guided by a professor, includes the campaigns of the NAACP during the 1930’s. Last summer, DeAsia landed an editorial internship with Black Girl Fly magazine in Chicago where she produced solo and joint pieces pertaining to black womanhood. She also serves as a correspondent for her university's outlet, the University Daily Kansan. Her work has been featured on Fansided, Spark Sports, Huffington Post Black Voices, and the University Daily Kansan. She also developed her own blog (deasiapaige.com) in which she writes about issues that resonate with her. Currently, DeAsia is an arts and culture correspondent for the University Daily Kansan. She also serves on the journalism student leadership board at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications. Also, this is her second year doing undergraduate research with the Emerging Scholars program. DeAsia recently accepted a position to write for Caged Bird magazine, an online platform for minority college students.

@deasia_paige

DeAsia Paige Sutgrey (preferred writing name DeAsia Paige) is an emerging journalist whose writing reflects the intersection of sports, music, culture, and black womanhood. She is a sophomore studying journalism and African and African-American studies at the University of Kansas with an expected graduation date of May 2020. Since her time at the University of Kansas, DeAsia has been involved in a couple of opportunities that have influenced her journalistic career path. She was invited to participate in undergraduate research during her freshman year with the Emerging Scholars program on campus. Her research, guided by a professor, includes the campaigns of the NAACP during the 1930’s. Last summer, DeAsia landed an editorial internship with Black Girl Fly magazine in Chicago where she produced solo and joint pieces pertaining to black womanhood. She also serves as a correspondent for her university's outlet, the University Daily Kansan. Her work has been featured on Fansided, Spark Sports, Huffington Post Black Voices, and the University Daily Kansan. She also developed her own blog (deasiapaige.com) in which she writes about issues that resonate with her. Currently, DeAsia is an arts and culture correspondent for the University Daily Kansan. She also serves on the journalism student leadership board at the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications. Also, this is her second year doing undergraduate research with the Emerging Scholars program. DeAsia recently accepted a position to write for Caged Bird magazine, an online platform for minority college students.

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@lauren_lumps

Lauren Lumpkin is a senior at American University in Washington, D.C. She is a proud Cleveland, Ohio-native and a lover of all things media. Lauren has previously interned with Bloomberg BNA and NBC Washington. This semester she is interning with The Washington Post, covering local news on the Metro desk. On campus, Lauren is a resident assistant and editor-in-chief of The Blackprint, American University's first and only news and culture website for students of color. She has covered hate crimes on campus, protests, and white privilege and supremacy. Lauren has also interviewed celebrities like Gabrielle Union, Common and Daymond John. Lauren enjoys tackling issues surrounding race, power and privilege, and looks forward to examining these topics further with BLACK ON CAMPUS and The Nation. Outside of journalism, Lauren studies Chinese. In 2017 she was awarded the Critical Language Scholarship to study Mandarin in Taiwan. She has also studied in Beijing and Harbin, China. Lauren eventually wants to find ways to intersect her knowledge of China with her passion for news and reporting. After graduation, Lauren wants to continue reporting as a full-time journalist. Lauren believes the world needs diverse storytellers who can report honest and truthful news. She hopes her work will motivate and inspire more journalists of color.

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@dejamdennis

Deja Dennis is a mass communication major, creative writing minor from Peoria, Illinois. She is currently a sophomore at Xavier University of Louisiana. She aspires to be a screenwriter creating scripts for television and film. Her first love is poetry, as she started writing in middle school. During her first year in college, she produced two digital shorts highlighting people of color and wrote for two black publications in New Orleans. She was also the winner of the Truman Capote Creative Writing Award. She is an active participant in XU Media, an organization at Xavier highlighting the media skills of the students. She participates in XU Radio's Girl Talk as a writer and on air talent. She is also the head script writer for an upcoming series to be featured on social media. Her main goal is to express her creativity through digital storytelling, giving people of color a voice.