Editorial: Student journalism matters — never in our lifetime has it been clearer

Kedzie Hall, home to the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications, on the Kansas State campus on April 5, 2019. (File Photo by Dene Dryden | Collegian Media Group)

Student publications have a rich history at Kansas State. The first student newspaper came to the university in 1896 under the name of The Student Herald, and with it came one of the first media curricula in the United States.

Today, all student media at K-State —including Collegian Media Group publications, KKSU-TV and Wildcat 91.9 FM— serve a vital role to the culture of the student body.

And through the pandemic, the work continues. Student journalism matters — never in our lifetimes has it been clearer.

Student media across the United States is on the frontline covering the COVID-19 pandemic, and the student journalists here are no exception.

The Royal Purple yearbook rededicated multiple pages to cover the pandemic for the university’s historical record. MHK All Day, a weekly morning newscast, still broadcasts the news without the luxury of access to their studio in Dole Hall. Manhappenin’ Magazine still works to get its spring lifestyle issue to the student body despite an empty campus. Wildcat 91.9, with the help of a skeleton staff, is still broadcasting on the airwaves.

The Collegian — unable to produce a print paper right now — diligently covers the university, its students and the local community during this time, cataloging personal stories from the pandemic, the daily virus impact and more by making use of our digital infrastructure.

Though we might not be on campus, we’re still here, and serving the students of K-State is, as always, our top priority. These times are trying, but our vow to be transparent and honest has not diminished.

On this day, Save Student Newsrooms Day, we honor the work of other student journalists around the world. We show our support for our peers who struggle against censorship, who cope with budget cuts meant to paralyze their vital work and don’t have access to the same freedoms we are so lucky to have at K-State.

As the Independent Student Voice, we are your newspaper. Funded by the students, it’s our job to tell your stories. If you wish to share an opinion, our community editor Olivia Rogers can be reached at letters@kstatecollegian.com. If you have a news tip or want us to cover something specific, send it directly to news@kstatecollegian.com. If there’s an area in which you feel the Collegian is falling short, reach out to the editorial staff by emailing collegian@kstatecollegian.com.

Support the Collegian and our sister publications Manhappenin’ Magazine and the Royal Purple by donating to Collegian Media Group, or buying your yearbook. You can also keep tabs on all things K-State by subscribing to our free newsletter that comes to your inbox three times a week.