The Argosy’s longtime responsibility to the local community

The perspective of a Sackvillian student journalist

The Argosy has always been a part of my life. As a Sackvillian, The Argosy was always on my family coffee table growing up, and I applied to work there while I was still in high school. I eventually became the editor-in-chief, one of my favourite parts of my time at Mount Allison. Now, I live in Maine and I am able to keep up to date with the news from my hometown on The Argosy’s website, as well as Sackville Community Concerns on Facebook, of course. 

A student paper must grapple with how to report on uses and abuses of power. Members of the Mt. A community often have strong opinions regarding campus culture, university administration, and student politics. Student journalism has an important responsibility to the community, and needs to carefully exercise power against oppression while still protecting the safety of the newspaper so it can continue to do so. Honestly, it is a difficult line to walk, especially if the newspaper staff are also involved in student activism, which is often the case at The Argosy. 

The hardest part of working for The Argosy was finding that balance. There were certainly stories I wish we could have published in my time that would have been impossible to tell in a thoroughly researched way given the resources we had. I think that is just the nature of the beast, and sometimes this balance is found more gracefully than at other times. I definitely fumbled the ball a few times (there’s a metaphor in honor of the retired Sports section), and I admire the current staff’s ability to relay hard-hitting news effectively and tastefully.  

As an editor and reporter, I was given the opportunity to cover a wide scope of stories. Sometimes I covered faculty council and senate meetings (an often boring assignment saved specially for news editors). I also got to cover some stories I was very passionate about, including the faculty strike, concerns over police surveillance of a visiting author/anti-mining activist on campus, the ongoing campaign to divest from fossil fuels, and student experiences with online harassment and racism after being named on a professor’s blog. Student journalism allows peers to share their stories and can garner support for important movements on campus. 

For me, The Argosy has always been a place for the Mt. A and greater Sackville community to get news straight from the source: from students, Mt. A employees, town locals, and faculty. I am glad to see 150 years of work from Mt. A’s student journalists, and I look forward to keeping up with the paper as it evolves. Long live The Argosy!

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