Student Roster 2013 (2014 roster on


Bay News Rising hopes to introduce labor reporting to students — and provide a source of ongoing training, networking, mentoring and publishing for student journalists collaborating for the future of Bay Area journalism. To see more about the program, visit here.

This year’s class of BNR features a mix of City College of San Francisco, University of San Francisco and San Francisco State University students. Links below the profiles are to the student’s work, which may be on a website outside of

Ida Mojadad – SFSU

Ida Mojadad is an Orange County-born, Bay Area-living student recently adopted by the SF State Journalism Department. Her upbringing by Iranian immigrants instilled a broader international interest in human rights, but she also finds herself gravitating towards issues in Muni. Conflicting perspectives in media reporting and the lack of reporting on wealth disparities are known to intrigue her, too. She finds research enjoyable, and one can usually find Ida in a library.

Ida’s work:
‘Day of Action’ Takes aim at Walmart, Gap 
“Californian Iranians React to Election”

Mckenna Toston – CCSF

Mckenna is pursuing journalism to give a voice to the voiceless. She aspires to cover worldwide war zones and is passionate about human rights, social justice and gender equality. This year, she spent her spring semester in India, where she wrote a column for City College of San Francisco’s newspaper, The Guardsman, about her experience traveling alone in a foreign land. Her education goals include UC Berkeley and Columbia School of Journalism.

Mckenna’s work:  
“Californian Iranians React to Election”

Coburn Palmer – SFSU

Coburn Palmer is a 34-year-old journalism student seeking to report on the human condition. He is interested in covering news stories and doing interesting features. He’s a writer first and foremost, he said, but can also take his own photos. He’s also interested in getting better at using video. Most of all, he’s interested in combining all these skills into one package when telling stories.

Vanessa Serpas -SFSU

Vanessa Serpas is a Journalism student at San Francisco State University. Her major focus is Print and Online reporting and writing with a minor in Raza Studies. She describes her specialties as communicating minority issues, youth advocacy, women empowerment, redevelopment, education, and arts/culture within San Francisco. She is also interested in topics about women’s rights and LGBT issues. She enjoys learning about a wide array of topics for her own intellectual satisfaction—but also because she thinks it is important, as a journalist, that she is continuously informed about a range of subjects.

Henry Perez – SFSU

Henry is a first generation Mexican-American who grew up in Seaside, California, and his parents are from Michoacan, Mexico. He has been writing since he was young – short stories and poetry. He was introduced to journalism at SF State, and was inspired by what he describes as independent, hard-hitting journalism. A focus on social issues is important to him, driving his desire to land an internship at Mother Jones. In the long term he is interested in reporting on youth education.

Dalton Amador – CCSF

Dalton was born and raised in the small, rural Northern California town Sonoma. He moved to San Francisco after graduating from Sonoma Valley High School in 2011 to attend City College. He hopes to transfer to University of San Francisco soon. He decided to pursue journalism, even though he has doubts, he says, about making it his career due to his passion for politics and entertainment. He’s interested in reporting on social justice, the failure of the mental health system and the methamphetamine epidemic among SF’s gay male population.

Dalton’s work:
San Francisco Bay Guardian:
City College supporters protest state take over and the agenda behind it 
“Bay News Rising Student Union Reaches Agreement with the Guild”

Shayna Rubin – SFSU

Rubin is going into her fourth year as a student at San Francisco State University, majoring in journalism. She grew up in San Francisco and attended high school in the Haight Ashbury neighborhood. She came to SFSU not knowing what career path to embark on, or what she was passionate about, she said. During her sophomore year of college, though, she realized she had been ignoring her passion: writing. She took some journalism classes and fell in love with the craft. She’s excited to write about San Francisco’s rising women CEOs, and wants to perhaps try her hand in the broadcast world. She has a strong interest in sports journalism.

Amanda Rhoades – USF

Amanda Rhoades left her native Los Angeles to pursue her education at the University of San Francisco, where she’s currently earning her Bachelor of Arts in Media Studies, with a minor in journalism. Although she’s served numerous publications in a variety of capacities, ranging from web editor to photographer, her passion is journalism and she remains a staff writer at the San Francisco Foghorn. Amanda is interested in covering marginalized groups, particularly Latina women.

Amanda’s work:
San Francisco Bay Guardian: 
“In the moment: At City Hall for the Supreme Court’s Same-Sex Wedding Decisions”
Hundreds Gather at City Hall to hear Supreme Court decision on gay marriage


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