Our car pulled into the driveway of the house in which we expected to spend the night. Cold and tired, we stumbled up to the door of our billet’s house only to discover the door was locked. Frantically, we made phone calls to track down the keys so we could rest our weary heads for the busy weekend ahead.
This past weekend four Gazette editors journeyed to Fredericton for the Atlantic Regional Canadian University Press conference (ARCUP), a meeting of student newspapers from across Atlantic Canada. The Gazette has rejoined the Canadian University Press (CUP)
This gathering was a coming home of sorts. It was important that The Gazette begin rebuilding relationships with other student media outlets. As student newspapers face increasing strains from all sides, The Gazette must evolve to ensure we continue giving our readers strong journalism and relevant resources.
From talks featuring professionals in the field and roundtable discussions with other student papers, we learned considerable amounts this weekend. From how to use our Twitter feed to inform our readers of breaking and ongoing news stories, to how a website should be more user friendly, we learned how to engage readers beyond our traditional print format.
The print medium is taking huge strides in different directions and we must remain vigilant of trends. Journalism is becoming a two-way conversation between the writer and the reader. We want to foster this two-way conversation with students.
In past years, Gazette staff members have ignored the reader’s voice. But we have made huge strides this year to rectify that and bring readers into our conversation. By learning what other student newspapers do, we can create a strong, well-rounded paper.
The Gazette will continue our involvement with CUP. From putting more of our stories on the wire, to developing resources that other papers can use, our paper is developing a strong presence in the organization.
CUP allows our paper to gain nationally and regionally relevant stories from the wire, graphics from across the country and strong resources for staff. If you write for us this year, you will gain access to resources that will help build your writing skills while exposing you to a larger audience. Through the wire service, student newspapers across the country can pick up your story. In addition to the wire, writers can make use of the plethora of resources that include both journalism professionals and student journalists.
Gazette staff members have made sacrifices – mainly sleep – to ensure that we reach our goal this year: to give our readers quality journalism. The Gazette has begun a new chapter in its long history. Through CUP we hope this chapter will be the strongest one yet.