Opinion

Keep WVUM and TMH strong by voting

On Monday, WVUM and The Miami Hurricane are asking you to vote for us. We are asking you to vote yes to raise our student activity fee by $6. Three dollars of that total will be allocated to help TMH continue publishing on a semi-weekly basis and assist us to keep producing our award-winning publication.

Students depend on The Miami Hurricane for information and entertainment. They look for our print version every Monday and Thursday in the stands. They pick up our papers to not only keep up with the campus, but also to check out V’s latest wise words.

And, when it’s not Monday and Thursday, The Miami Hurricane’s website and social media feeds are sizzling with new information and content. Now, more than ever, The Miami Hurricane is covering campus news, trends and sports in the most creative manner possible. We have blogs, podcasts, interactive features on our website like our recently launched TMHtv, visually appealing photo slideshows and virtual editions of our most recent editions. And, it’s just the beginning of the semester – just imagine what else we have planned for the school year. Spoiler alert: One includes a redesign and the other has to do with mobile devices.

And, on another important note, TMH documents campus history and keeps a record of traditions and trends.

It’s no secret newspapers have suffered during the economic downturn and the rise of the Internet. TMH has suffered bottom-line losses for the last four years because of dramatic decreases in advertising revenues, not only because of the tough economic times, but also because of the reduction in SAFAC student organization ad funding.

In order to address these losses, we have reduced our staff’s payroll, and we’ve cut our press run from 10,000 to 8,000. We’ve taken many other measures, too, and fortunately we have been able to cover the shortfalls to a breakeven point thanks to a small reserve fund built up over the last 20 years when ad revenues were better. At this point, however, we are getting close to tapping out that fund, and what’s to come after that point is unknown.

While some administrators have mentioned the possibility of cutting back The Hurricane to a weekly publication, we strongly feel that it is unacceptable for a top-50 institution to only have one student newspaper that publishes on just a weekly basis.

After researching the matter in Richter Library’s archives, TMH has not asked for any increase in student activity fee funding for at least 30 years. And, as best we can tell, it might actually be around 50 years since TMH asked for a fee increase.

You all count on TMH and WVUM. So now we’re counting on you. Vote yes to help out TMH and WVUM.

 

Stephanie Parra is a senior majoring in journalism and political science.

September 29, 2013

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Stephanie Parra

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About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.