First Amendment topicsAbout the First Amendment
A campus newspaper reaches out

By Gene Policinski
First Amendment Center vice president/executive director

Comment? E-mail me

Far too often student journalism gets into the news as a newsmaker itself because of a negative situation — battling censorship by administrators and the like.

Better that student journalists be able to focus more on matters that improve, not just preserve, news coverage. At the University of South Dakota’s student paper, The Volante, new Editor in Chief Michelle Rydell recently wrote of a challenge and an opportunity, inviting the campus community to join in efforts to develop a diverse staff and news sources, the better to report on all interests on the USD campus.

Rydell sought racial diversity, but also invited “people of all cultures, heritages and lifestyles” to come to the campus newspaper’s offices and “ask questions. Get involved.”

To do a good job of reporting, she said, "we need people of all walks of life beside us, working together to ensure that (the news) is told in its entirety.”

Rydell didn’t say it exactly this way, but I will: The value of a free press is best demonstrated when that press reaches out to, reflects, and reports on all parts of its community — fairly, accurately and completely.

Comment? E-mail me


How not to handle a college newspaper dispute

By Gene Policinski Cutting off funds to a student publication over 'illegal' spending damages readers and smacks of censorship. 02.10.08

First Amendment Watch blog with Gene Policinski

Analysis/Commentary summary page
View the latest analysis and commentary throughout the First Amendment Center Online.

print this   Print

Last system update: Sunday, January 25, 2009 | 01:12:58
About this site
About the First Amendment
About the First Amendment Center
First Amendment programs
State of the First Amendment

First Reports
Supreme Court
First Amendment publications
First Amendment Center history
Freedom Sings™
First Amendment

Congressional Research Service reports
Guest editorials
FOI material
The First Amendment

Lesson plans
Contact us
Privacy statement
Related links