Strong newspaper alumni networks do more than you think

By Mary Kate Brogan

For papers that have run into trouble with college administrations, an alumni network not only comes in handy but can make the difference between the continuation of a paper and the end of an era. While this has thankfully not happened at Elon, it doesn’t mean an alumni network wouldn’t be helpful.

When I went to I’d Tap That: Putting Your Alumni Network to Work on Friday, I thought it would be about using your alumni network for helping reporters get jobs and internships. This was not a focus of the session, but it doesn’t mean the session wasn’t helpful – it just didn’t particularly pertain to me as a current staff member.

The session’s leaders, Scott Sternberg, a former LSU Reveille editor and lawyer, and Frank LoMonte, of the SPLC, addressed the concerns with how alumni networks can be helpful to students whose newspapers are in trouble. In terms of setting them up, the process was simple: start a Facebook or LinkedIn group. I plan to start one of these groups, most likely on Facebook, to broaden the network of mentors available to Pendulum staffers and help keep alumni informed about what’s going on at The Pendulum.

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