The Montclair State University board of trustees held their annual tuition hearing on Wednesday, April 10. The meeting encourages students to come and speak out about their concerns in regards to the money they pay each semester and where it goes to.
When it was time for the campus community to address the board, one student approached the podium, carrying with them a copy of The Montclarion. They thanked the board for allowing them to speak and went on to say there are stacks of unread papers left on the news stands all across campus.
They then suggested the board cut funding toward the media organization, something that shocked everyone in the room that morning.
This decision would not only negatively impact the editors, staff members and contributors who work hard each week to publish well-reported and written pieces, but the student body, faculty, staff and alumni who are active readers and continue to support free press at Montclair State.
What this individual, as well as many others, do not know is that The Montclarion is independent from the university and receives funding from additional fees students pay along with their annual tuition.
Each full-time student at the university pays an additional $3.50 at $0.23 cents a credit every semester for the weekly paper, which is a small price to pay for access to on-campus news, entertainment, sports and other valuable information.
Where would we be without student newspapers? @MichalStein2 & @lidiabraha speak to journalists from Ontario student papers about how the Student Choice Initiative may affect them, & the stories they broke that we may never have heard w/o campus journalism https://t.co/anhKEAXV72
— Ryerson Review (@RyersonReview) February 1, 2019
Campus media is a very important aspect of higher education. It not only serves as a tool for students interested in journalism to expand their writing and reporting skills, but as a hub for the community to find out what’s going on around campus.
Just this year, there have been so many issues the Montclair State community needed to be aware of, such as on-campus arrests, sewage leaks and protests. Without campus media, students might have never known these events happened or when they plan to be resolved.
Not only do we report on hard news, but The Montclarion gives students the opportunity to attend and cover concerts, sporting events and write profiles on interesting people on top of other organizations on campus. It also gives students a chance to voice their own opinions on the issues that matter to them and help give voices to the voiceless.
This newspaper has changed my life and I firmly believe that if you (yes you!) want to work in news at some point in your life, nothing else on campus can prepare you quite like the Beacon. https://t.co/pjHOpqOlHd
— Stephanie Purifoy (@stephbpurifoy) April 14, 2019
People may argue that print is very costly, which we agree with, but statistics from The Montclarion have shown that they are being picked up. Many students complain that they see stacks of newspapers left on the stand several days after they are published, but it really depends on the location.
Our statistics show that locations, such as the Student Center and University Hall, have higher pick-up numbers than the residence halls on campus. In some instances, there are none left on the stand after only a few days.
We do not condemn this student for speaking out about what they believe in. This person brought to our attention that there are some things that could be reworked, like modifying the number of copies placed in different locations on campus.
Happy #NationalHugANewsPersonDay from The Montclarion! Today, we celebrate journalists and people within the news for working hard to deliver stories to the public.
— The Montclarion (@TheMontclarion) April 4, 2018
On the other hand, in a world full of technology at the palm of people’s hands, we hope to keep print journalism and old media alive because that is where our organization stems from.
All of us at The Montclarion want to thank President Susan Cole, the board of trustees and everyone on and off campus who continue to support and encourage the work we do. With your support, The Montclarion has evolved to more than just a weekly newspaper, but an award-winning multimedia organization.
The awards keep on coming @montclairstateu! Very proud of the @TheMontclarion for 6 first place (and 9 overall) college press awards from NJ Press Foundation! Best feature writing, web project, & much more. Congrats to our student journalists and faculty advisor @journoprof
— Montclair SCM (@MontclairSCM) March 18, 2019
We hope to carry on the legacy that began in 1928 and strive to always be #MSUstudentvoice.