‘It Happens Here, Too’: Student Newspaper at Loyola Marymount Spotlights Sexual Violence in Special Report

I carried with me the hopes of my family. … I carried my own aspirations. Most importantly, I carried the possibility of a fresh start as a burgeoning young woman in the city of my dreams. But those hopes and that naive sense of possibility were taken away from me the night I was raped. I was left empty, my humanity stripped from me, alone in a sea of skyscrapers.”

A new five-page special report in The Los Angeles Loyolan at Loyola Marymount University dissects and contemplates sexual violence on the modern college campus from multiple perspectives — including a student rape survivor, the parents of a student rape survivor and a sexual assault perpetrator.

The guest column by the student survivor’s parents is especially compelling. They share details of their daughter’s rape this past Halloween at a house party, their subsequent prolonged grief and their continued lack of understanding at what compels individuals to rape or help protect an alleged rapist. Read More

Ohio U. Student Newspaper Suspends Opinion Editor for Cutting Secret Deal with School President

The Post suspended its opinion editor Xander Zellner for two weeks and has publicly apologized to readers for a secret deal Zellner agreed to with Ohio University’s president.

According to The Athens News, Zellner convinced OU prez Roderick McDavis to become an occasional op-ed contributor to the Post starting earlier this year. Along with nailing down details like “frequency of contribution, word count, topics of interest, and headline writing,” the president’s handlers secured an agreement from Zellner to have McDavis’ op-eds run without a published rebuttal of any sort for at least 24 hours. Hmm.

Zellner then told no one else on the student newspaper’s staff. Double hmm. And double trouble, apparently. Read More

Dan Visits The Daily Pennsylvanian, Part 2: ‘All Good Things are Wild & Free’

[Check Out Part 1: An Audit or an Audition]

Daily Pennsylvanian editor-in-chief Jill Castellano has a painting above the desk in her newsroom office sporting the words “All Good Things are Wild & Free.” On her iMac screen, by comparison, is a Google doc with three tabs: “Weekly Timeline,” “To Do” and “Accountability.”

Castellano, 20, is accountable for the editorial side of The Daily Pennsylvanian operations. As second-in-command to executive editor Matt Mantica, she oversees and assists more than 300 DP staffers. She also keeps an eye on the top-notch arts and culture magazine 34th Street and the news, gossip and entertainment blog Under the Button.

During a chat in her office earlier this month, Castellano oozed calm passion and a packed schedule. She sported a peachy blouse underneath a tan blazer with black slacks, long sandy blond hair with a deep part and a warm smile. Read More

Dan Visits The Daily Pennsylvanian, Part 1: An Audit or an Audition

On a sunny afternoon in early April, I stood near the corner of 40th and Walnut streets in Philadelphia, staring at the home base of what is possibly the best college newspaper in America: The Daily Pennsylvanian at the University of Pennsylvania.

It’s windy, but warm, warmer at least than it has been in months. A stream of cars scoot steadily down Walnut’s two-lane, one-way thoroughfare. A bunch of bicyclists and pedestrians join them — some sporting backpacks and branded jackets subtly or overtly revealing their Penn bona fides.

This intersection and surrounding area used to be on the fringes of Penn’s campus. As the university has expanded and the city has evolved, it’s become a much more central location — geographically and economically. The multi-block strip now operates as the school’s unofficial retail corridor. Read More

Student Newspaper Story Leads to Therapy Dog’s Removal from U. of Rhode Island Residence Hall

A feel-good report in the University of Rhode Island student newspaper about a longtime housekeeper and his beloved therapy dog has led to the dog’s removal from campus. Warning: Canine lovers may be saddened or enraged at this tale’s sequence of events.

First, the dog had his day. The Good 5 Cent Cigar at URI ran a piece this past Thursday focused on the young black and white Husky, named Ivy. In recent months, Ivy has become a high-profile, popular part of a campus residence hall. She is brought to the dorm each morning by her owner and URI janitor Mike LaPolice. Along with pale blue eyes, Ivy boasts a nationally-recognized therapy dog certification and, according to LaPolice, “she genuinely cares about people and wants to make sure they’re OK.” Read More

PSU, UVA Student Papers Team Up for Special Report on ‘Fraternities, Alcohol & Sexual Assault’

“I would say there’s an alcohol-sexual assault correlation, and obviously alcohol and social events are an aspect of the Greek community that, for better or worse, has been around for a long time.” – PSU Interfraternity Council president

The Daily Collegian at Penn State University and The Cavalier Daily at the University of Virginia recently teamed up for a terrific special report spotlighting in stark detail the ever-tangled, dangerous triangulation of alcohol, Greek life and sexual violence at colleges and universities nationwide.

The combined long-form report by Collegian metro editor Erin McCarthy and Cavalier Daily news associate editor Anna Higgins is largely focused on a pair of high-profile recent scandals at the schools: the fallout from the Rolling Stone “A Rape on Campus” report and PSU fraternity Kappa Delta Rho’s operation of “a private Facebook group containing photos of nude, unconscious women.”

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‘First Amendment, Dead’: North Wind Fights Faculty Adviser Ouster, Editor Rejection

A senior administrator at Northern Michigan University may have helped kick the school’s student newspaper adviser to the curb and stopped a top student staffer from becoming editor-in-chief in retaliation for the paper’s coverage and reporting methods over the past year.

In a new bombshell report, The North Wind says Steven Neiheisel, NMU’s vice president for enrollment and student services, orchestrated the recent vote by the paper’s Board of Directors to not renew North Wind adviser Cheryl Reed’s contract. According to the paper, he also unduly influenced the board’s decision to reject managing editor Michael Williams’ application to be the paper’s next editor-in-chief — even though he’s the current second-in-command and was the only candidate for the top spot.

As a student board member tells the North Wind about Neiheisel’s intentions: “[I]t was very clear, in my personal opinion, I am pretty sure it has been his plan to get Cheryl Reed fired.” Read More

College Media & the College President: ‘I Wouldn’t Call It a Warm Relationship’

College president transparency — from the search process to everyday dealings with students and the press — has become an increasingly scrutinized and in some cases criticized issue.

To that end, I recently reached out to the spring 2015 CMM Fellows — an elite crew of top editors and reporters at student media across the U.S. and in Europe — to get their perspectives on a main question prompt: What is your outlet’s relationship with your college or university president? Read More

‘Special Edition for Ms. Thrasher’: Arkansas State Herald Honors Longtime Adviser

“The loss of an adviser is something indescribable to a college newspaper staff. It was impossible to fully understand and appreciate the extent of Ms. Thrasher’s work and dedication to this publication and staff until she was gone. That woman was truly amazing. She was the soul of our newspaper and the heart of our staff.”

The Herald at Arkansas State University has put together a special edition honoring the life, work and legacy of longtime adviser and journalism instructor Bonnie Thrasher.

Thrasher, who passed away in her sleep early last week, served as Herald adviser since 1993 and was a respected leader within the college media community — she was College Media Association (CMA) vice president at the time of her death. Read More

U.Va. Student Paper Criticizes ‘Columbia Report’ of Rolling Stone’s ‘Rape on Campus’ Story

The Cavalier Daily is disappointed in the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism’s new report detailing the failures of the now-infamous Rolling Stone “A Rape on Campus” feature. In an editorial posted yesterday not long after the report was released, the University of Virginia student newspaper argued that it focused too much on the screw-ups related to “Jackie’s story” at the expense of other journalism misdeeds and the author’s alleged larger mischaracterizations of U.Va.

1For those in need of a refresher, Rolling Stone published “A Rape on Campus” by Sabrina Rubin Erdely this past December. The 9,000-word story explored the seemingly rampant, poorly adjudicated cases of rape and sexual assault at U.Va. and other colleges and universities nationwide. The focus of the article’s stunning opener: a U.Va. student identified as “Jackie” recounting an alleged gang rape carried out by seven members of a university fraternity.

The report overall — and especially Jackie’s story — set the national press and general public abuzz upon its release. Yet, the buzz quickly turned to doubt and then rebukes when it was determined the gang rape allegation was most likely made up and the reporting and editing that led to its inclusion in the piece were horrendously flawed. Read More

North Wind Faculty Adviser Fired, Top Editor-in-Chief Candidate Rejected at Northern Michigan

The Board of Directors of The North Wind, the student newspaper at Northern Michigan University, has voted to not rehire faculty adviser Cheryl Reed for the next school year. In addition, the board has rejected current managing editor Michael Williams’ candidacy to be the next editor-in-chief. He is the only student who applied for the paper’s top spot. But his EIC dreams were dashed in a 5-4 vote after a “lengthy executive [read: secret] session.”

According to an initial report posted on the North Wind site, “Current editor-in-chief Emma Finkbeiner was not allowed in the interview of Michael Williams or in the discussion of his candidacy following due to the ruling of an ‘executive session.’ Finkbeiner is not considered a part of the board due to her non-voting status. The discussion of the rehiring of Reed was not listed on the agenda.” Yowza.

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April Fools 2015 Round-Up: Apologies, Retractions, Budget Fights, Laughter & a Missing ‘Pest’

The student press has emerged mostly intact from April Fools 2015, but the parodying and satirizing did leave one A-list outlet publicly bruised and another locked in an odd free press fight. Oh, and some humor actually happened too, sans controversy.

Here are the cringe-worthy and chuckle-worthy highlights and lowlights. Read More

College Media in Action #13: Daily Iowan Editor Interviews U. of Iowa President One-on-One

College Media in Action is a CMM photo series aiming to provide glimpses of student journalists and college media outlets at work (or kicking back) — in the newsroom, the classroom, the field, the dorm or at an unofficial sacred journalist hangout of some sort.

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College Media in Action #12: OU Nightly Crew at Daily Editorial Meeting at U. of Oklahoma

College Media in Action is a CMM photo series aiming to provide glimpses of student journalists and college media outlets at work (or kicking back) — in the newsroom, the classroom, the field, the dorm or at an unofficial sacred journalist hangout of some sort.

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Collegiate Times Shake-Up: Virginia Tech Paper Loses Top Editors, GM & Two Other Pro Staffers

The Collegiate Times, the student newspaper at Virginia Tech, and its affiliated media company are undergoing a dramatic leadership and staff shake-up. The paper’s editor-in-chief and two professional staff members are no longer in their respective positions. In addition, the general manager of the pub’s advisory organization is reportedly leaving at semester’s end and one of the EIC’s replacements has just given his two weeks notice very publicly and angrily on Twitter.

According to trusted sources with knowledge of the situation, financial constraints recently led to the layoffs of longtime design and production adviser S.B. Chandler and accounting and sales adviser Dorothy Deverin.

Carrie Cousins will also be vacating her position as general manager of the CT’s overseeing organization, the Educational Media Company at Virginia Tech (EMCVT). She is apparently set to move on when the spring term wraps in May to pursue an employment opportunity more suitable to her interests and skill-set. It is unclear at this time whether the precarious financial state of the organization or concerns others have expressed to me about the EMCVT Board of Directors may have spurred or hastened her exit.

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College Media in Action #11: Ka Leo’s Top Editor & Adviser Critique Paper at U. of Hawaii

College Media in Action is a CMM photo series aiming to provide glimpses of student journalists and college media outlets at work (or kicking back) — in the newsroom, the classroom, the field, the dorm or at an unofficial sacred journalist hangout of some sort.

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College Media in Action #10: Ka Leo Editors at U. of Hawaii Vote on Cover Page

College Media in Action is a CMM photo series aiming to provide glimpses of student journalists and college media outlets at work (or kicking back) — in the newsroom, the classroom, the field, the dorm or at an unofficial sacred journalist hangout of some sort.

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‘An Avalanche of Intolerance’: Student Media in Indiana Respond to ‘Religious Freedom Law’

As newshounds nationwide are well aware, an ever-growing and evermore raucous debate and furor are brewing over the state of Indiana’s so-called “religious freedom law.” Critics of the law — officially known as the Religious Freedom Restoration Act or RFRA — argue it will “allow businesses to use religion as an excuse to discriminate and refuse service to LGBT customers.”

Student media across Indiana are covering various facets of the controversy and have now begun weighing in with their own takes on the bill. The initial editorial reactions I’m reading are negative. The Hoosier state’s student journos are branding the RFRA an open door toward discrimination and out of touch with 21st-century realities and values in America.


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Three Bucknell Students Suspended for Racial Slurs, Racial Violence Talk on Campus Radio

An investigation is underway at Pennsylvania’s Bucknell University centered on a segment of a weekly campus radio show which allegedly included racial slurs and talk “promoting racial violence.” Three students involved with the segment have been suspended pending the investigation’s outcome — the DJ in the booth at the time and a pair of guests.

According to The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa., the show known as “Happy Times” airs each Friday evening on the campus FM station WVBU. Online, staffers describe WVBU as “‘The Voice of Bucknell University,’ Bucknell’s one and only, student-run radio station.” Read More

College Media in Action #9: A Bold Display of Patriots Pride by a Pitt News Sports Editor

College Media in Action is a CMM photo series aiming to provide glimpses of student journalists and college media outlets at work (or kicking back) — in the newsroom, the classroom, the field, the dorm or at an unofficial sacred journalist hangout of some sort.

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