An article I wrote for my journalism class in February 2010.
Students on the Purchase College campus have recently noticed a change in their weekly newspaper, The Purchase Independent. It hasn’t been as satisfying to them as many of the previous issues have been.
From the seniors who have been flipping through The Purchase Independent every Thursday to the curious crowds of freshmen, their talk about the beloved college publication is the same: The Indy is lacking material to write about.
Editor-in-chief, Mariel Loveland, a senior Creative Writing major from New Jersey says that it isn’t only The Purchase Independent that is struggling for stories to cover, but the college’s online news source, The Brick, also does not have much to write about. She says it’s because many Purchase students do not want to be involved in campus activities, and therefore, nothing much happens on campus.
“There also aren’t many people who are interested in writing for the newspapers here. Everybody would rather be drinking and partying,” Loveland says. “The Purchase Independent is like a community, we’re all really close and very accepting. People don’t understand that you don’t have to write.” She says that there are also layout positions, and that you don’t have to be a part of the newspaper to submit your articles, comics, or anything else that is considered intriguing to the student body.
“I honestly think the quality of The Indy has changed for the better,” Loveland says. She thinks back to her copy-editing days. “I remember last year, the editor was so nasty that she drove people away. No one wanted to help.” She says that though the newspaper does have a few interns this semester, not many people applied for the openings that the paper offers.
The Purchase Independent has a website, but it is currently under construction. Loveland says that giving the campus their news through the internet may help students become more aware of The Purchase Independent–it may bring them to become more involved. The interns are currently in charge of refreshing the outdated website.
Lauren Chimento, a senior literature major who reads the paper on a weekly basis, has taken note of the changes as well.
“The Indy has a lot of potential. This campus has plenty of good writers, including those who work for The Indy,” She says. “But, I feel like they don’t address their issues as they should.” She says that she does enjoy reading the college paper, and especially thought it was “so cool” when she was a freshman, but now it doesn’t seem to be taken seriously.
“It’s hard to work with things you aren’t given, and it’s tough to please a college crowd,” says Chimento.
Many students walk down the hallway of Campus Center North on their way to The Hub, without giving the rack of newspapers outside of The Purchase Independent’s office a second glance.
“I only pick up The Independent to read the ridiculous back page quotes. Sometimes they’re funny,” says a sophomore, who chooses to remain anonymous, as he walks by the rack where the publication is displayed. “There are a lot of strange things in there. I find it a little raunchy.”
He recognizes that the college’s newspaper sometimes has articles on important things, like student elections, tuition hikes, art-related projects, the construction, and events on campus, but should focus more on them, rather than pointless sexual interviews and lists of “sucky” movies and bands. “It could be a better paper if they cleaned it up a bit,” he says.