Election Coverage on Campus

College journalists can and should cover the presidential race: Here’s how

By Sarah Maben and Dan Malone

Barack, Mitt, Paul and Joe. Their names are all over professional newsfeeds regarding the U.S. presidential election.

Illustration: League of Women Voters

If their names aren’t part of college media newsfeeds, they could be. The student press corps has an arsenal of tools to cover the 2012 presidential campaign and election night with relative ease and very little money.

“To prepare journalism students for the media world they are entering, I think it’s essential to have them cover election night in real-time,” said Jake Batsell, adviser to smudailycampus.com at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas. “Election night provides journalism students with a perfect laboratory to perform under real-time pressure during a major news story.”

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Editor’s Corner

In with the old in the new year

If you’ve been following the CMA listserv since the first of the year, you’re familiar with the case of the East Carolina University newspaper adviser who was fired after controversy over the publication of a full-frontal photo of a streaker at a Pirates home football game. And, by now, you’ve probably heard about the blunder by a community news blog managed by Penn State students whose premature reporting of the death of coaching icon Joe Paterno was picked up by national media. Continue reading

Filmmakers document how Virginia Tech’s newspaper coped with horrific tragedy

By DANIEL REIMOLD, the University of Tampa

“Documenting Disaster” is a must-see film for student journalists and their advisers.  The 45-minute documentary, the work of four very recent graduates of Christopher Newport University, offers a glimpse into the newsroom of The Collegiate Times, the student newspaper at Virginia Tech, in the immediate aftermath of the April 2007 shootings. Continue reading