Student journalists deserve respect for their work

Wright State University students, in limited numbers, returned to class Monday August 24, 2020. There were students lined up in the bookstore practicing social distancing and almost all students were wearing masks.

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Wright State University students, in limited numbers, returned to class Monday August 24, 2020. There were students lined up in the bookstore practicing social distancing and almost all students were wearing masks.

From the editors at the Wright State Guardian

Student Press Freedom day was February 26, and this year, the day took on added meaning for the journalists at the Wright State Guardian.

Just like many on campus we weren’t allowed in the classroom due to Covid, we weren’t allowed in our office. But that didn’t mean we stopped producing content. We kept our campus community informed of the latest Covid news university announcements, and more.

We covered the most common crimes on campus, wrote about steps to take for a successful post-college career, and covered important campus elections. Since we’re now an online-only publication, we write news as it happens, whether it be day, night, or weekends.

And we did so understanding the importance of our craft. Sadly, more than 2,000 newspapers have closed across the country, leaving more than 1,300 communities without a source of news. Student journalists have stepped in to fill the void and in some cases are now the primary community source of news. The Dayton area remains fortunate that it has a strong and award-winning publication in the Dayton Daily News backed by a family that believes in local journalism. Not every community is so lucky.

At times, it seems as though our titles as “student” journalists make it hard to gain the respect of others because we’re not “real” reporters. The Student Press Law Center notes student journalists are written off as participants in a club. Even worse, some universities see student journalists as their personal public relations department.

Nothing could be further from the truth. It takes countless hours of preparation, investigation and reporting to do our jobs. Student journalists work hard to report on campus news, big and small. Like any other news publication, student newspapers are responsible for providing their audience with unbiased and factual information. Student journalists do not work for their universities --- they work for their audience.

The word “student” in front of any word should not make it less worthy of respect, but all the more deserving.

As we strive to grow as journalists, we’d like everyone to view our work in a professional light. Assist us in our fight against those who diligently seek to demean what we do.

We ask that our hard work and dedication to the craft be respected rather than downplayed. In doing so, we ensure that future generations of journalists, writers, and editors will have a stronger foundation to stand upon, and their communities will be informed by individuals driven by the passion for their craft.

Makenzie Hoeferlin, Editor in Chief; Alexis Wisler, Managing Editor; Nicholas BenVenuto, News Editor; Roxanne Roessner, Wright Life Editor

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Alexis Wisler

Alexis Wisler

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Alexis Wisler

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Makenzie Hoeferlin

Makenzie Hoeferlin

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Makenzie Hoeferlin

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Roxanne Roessner

Credit: SJM

Roxanne Roessner

Credit: SJM

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Roxanne Roessner

Credit: SJM

Credit: SJM