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ACP Membership

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ACP Membership Benefits

Premium Membership (best value) includes a written critique.
Please add $99 to your basic membership:

ACP offers written critiques for newspapers, yearbooks and feature magazines: a qualified judge will provide in-depth feedback on your published work and rate your publication (All-American through Third Class) according to established standards for college media. Members get reduced rates. To request an ACP critique, download the entry form and submit it with your publications as specified on the form.

A critique entry consists of, for newspapers, 6 issues; for yearbooks, 1 yearbook, and for literary or feature or news-feature magazines, 1 or 2 issues. Critiques may be requested at any time of the year.

ACP premium members and their advisers receive a 40 percent discount on select Poynter NewsU self-guided online courses as well as three certificate programs.

To upgrade your existing basic ACP membership, download this PDF and fill out your publication information. Check the ACP Premium Membership box and skip over the Basic Membership section. Scan and send the completed form to jackie@studentpress.org with the subject line “Premium Membership.”

Basic Membership Fees:
$119 School enrollment of 5,000 or fewer
$129 School enrollment of 5,001 to 10,000
$139 School enrollment of 10,001 to 20,000
$149 School enrollment of 20,001 or more


Membership Benefits:

Discounts on select Poynter-NewsU courses
ACP and Poynter’s News University have teamed up to provide college media students and their advisers exclusive discounted access to innovative e-learning journalism training. You’ll find helpful background in the news release.

ACP basic members and their advisers receive a 20 percent discount on select News University self-guided online courses as well as three certificate programs. ACP premium members receive a 40 percent discount.

The Pacemaker Competition
College journalism’s most prestigious and oldest prize for general excellence, first given in 1927, honors those who set the pace, surpassing all others. Entering the Pacemaker (and all of our other contests) is a free and exclusive benefit of ACP membership.

Individual Competitions
Individual staff members at ACP member publications can compete for national honors in these prestigious contests: Reporter of the Year, Story of the Year, Design of the Year, Photo Excellence, Cartooning and Advertising awards. Some contests include cash or other prizes provided by their co-sponsors.

Reduced Fees for Conventions, Critiques, Contests
Members pay lower registration fees for all ACP conventions and workshops including the fall National College Media Convention. If you send enough students, you can recoup most or all of the membership cost in registration savings.

Best of Show
At all ACP conventions and workshops, members can enter the event’s Best of Show general excellence contest for a lower fee than non-members.

Five reasons to join ACP

Learn for less
Our partnership with the Poynter Institute NewsU provides ACP member staffs with a 20 percent discount for select online courses and certificate programs.

For just $99 more, upgrade to a Premium ACP membership. It includes an in-depth publication/website critique from us. And a 40 percent Poynter NewsU discount.

An ACP membership provides all students on the staff to pay reduced fees at our conventions and workshops. With a handful of discounted registrations for an event, or by taking one of two discounted NewsU courses, ACP membership more than pays for itself.

Prove you’re the best
Submit your website, newspaper, yearbook or magazine in our prestigious and highly competitive contests. For general excellence, there’s the Pacemaker, setting the standard since 1927. Individuals can enter stories, photos, cartoons, ads and more in individual contests. And every convention has on-site Best of Show contest.

Get the info you need to succeed
The annual Pacemaker book showcases outstanding journalism and best practices. ACP membership makes you part of the nation’s premier association that connects student-directed news organizations and publications, in print and online/digital.

Network with pros and peers
At ACP conventions and workshops you’ll meet leading journalists and media professionals from across the country. Network with peers to solve problems and build for the future. If your staff wins a Pacemaker, you will be invited to join the Pacemaker Alumni Network on LinkedIn.

Build your résumé
Winning an individual award or being on the staff of an award-winning publication looks great on your résumé. Participation in an ACP convention or other meeting can also be listed as a part of your professional training. And, with exclusive discounts to Poynter Institute NewsU, you can complete certificate programs and take select courses on a tight budget.

The Pacemaker Book
This annual 125-plus-page book has full-color reproductions of pages from all of ACP’s major award winners from the past year. It’s an indispensable guide to what’s recognized as the best work published in the college press, with hundreds of design, coverage, photo and artwork examples.

Resource Booklets
ACP publishes useful guides for student journalists such as the Model Code of Ethics. Copies are included in your membership packet.

Online Resources
Our website, acp.studentpress.org, is continually updated with news and content useful to our members, including the College Media Matters blog, now sponsored by ACP. Information about activities and deadlines will regularly arrive in member staffs’ email inboxes to avoid missed opportunities. Be sure to list a permanent newsroom email address on the membership form.

Job and Internship Information
Through our new guide to freelancing, our online job board and a career fair at our annual fall convention, members get many opportunities to find out about and compete for jobs and internships.

Press Credentials, Logo, Certificate
Show your pride in membership by using and displaying these items, sent with your membership packet: press credentials in a custom badge holder printed with the ACP logo, a copy of our logo for reprinting in your masthead, and a Certificate of Membership.

Reduced Fees for Publication Critiques
ACP offers written critiques for newspapers, yearbooks and feature magazines: a qualified judge will provide in-depth feedback on your published work and rate your publication (All-American through Third Class) according to established standards for college media. Members get reduced rates.

Student networking and participation opportunities
We’re looking at ways for student staffers to take a greater role in participating in the ACP community, particularly via studentpress.org. Through features such as ACP View on Flickr.com, our Facebook fan page and our @acpress Twitter feed, we want to give students the opportunity to share their unique experiences and expertise with their fellow students around the country.

ACP Hall of Fame
Consistent award winners can qualify for induction into the ACP Hall of Fame. Inductees receive a commemorative plaque and are added to a composite plaques on display at ACP’s national headquarters. More details at our website.

ACP Critique Service
ACP offers written critiques for newspapers, yearbooks and feature magazines: a qualified judge will provide in-depth feedback on your published work and rate your publication (All-American through Third Class) according to established standards for college media. Members get reduced rates. To request an ACP critique, download the entry form and submit it with your publications as specified on the form.

A critique entry consists of, for newspapers, 6 issues; for yearbooks, 1 yearbook, and for literary or feature or news-feature magazines, 1 or 2 issues.

The cost of a written critique is $99 for ACP members and $199 for non-members. Critiques may be requested at any time of the year.

Form Central

The latest forms and brochures in PDF format:

Contest Deadlines

No upcoming deadlines

ACP Contests/Critiques...

Upcoming Conventions

ACP/CMA Fall National College Media Convention - Oct. 29–Nov. 2, 2014, Philadelphia

ACP Midwinter National College Journalism Convention - Feb. 26–Mar. 1, 2015, Los Angeles

ACP Conventions...