No: Elisabeth Fonden
Since I am new to the Talon this semester, I have been able to view this question from a student’s perspective as well as a writer’s. I believe the Talon is a great opportunity for students to participate with their ideas as a creative outlet. The magazine is also a place not only for writers, but also for designers and photographers to grow. Even before joining the Talon staff, I was asked to participate as a model for the November 2013 issue. It was an amazing opportunity, and it’s a big reason why I joined the class.
You might be asking this question to yourself: if there are classes created specifically for these creative outlets, why have a magazine? The answer is simply that it builds a great résumé. It also gives the writer, editor, or photographer experience in the real world. I’m sure I’m not the only student who gets excited when I see my articles published. It gives us hope to pursue our dreams.
Professor Peg Achterman noted, “If we are not informed, we do not participate well as ‘citizens’ of a community. Any form of news on a campus serves to ask tough questions of all in the community, not simply promote the agenda of the leadership (whether NUSG execs or administration).”
I believe that the Talon needs to stay. It gives students all over campus the opportunity to read about issues and realize, especially in the opinion pages, that it is okay to think differently about something. It isn’t immoral; it’s what makes you an individual.
Yes: Peter McMurray
Over the past year, there has been serious discussion in the Northwest University administration on whether or not the Talon should continue to receive funding. It currently receives an annual budget to print articles and provide scholarships for staff writers each year. However, due to rising costs and current economic times, Northwest has been toying with the idea of canceling funds for the Talon and putting it online for volunteer writers.
I had the opportunity to speak with many students about their thoughts in relation to the Talon and what its fate should be. I received almost the exact same response from everyone I interviewed. Some were frequent readers, some didn’t really care, and some even wrote for the Talon. However, they shared the common sentiment that the Talon should not lose its funding, but only on the condition that it improves in the future.
Although some felt that this last semester of the Talon’s life has been a step in the right direction, they all thought that the article topics as well as writing as a whole could be drastically improved. Some wanted more relevant articles, and many wanted more interesting or controversial topics. Some just wanted better writing. But they all agreed that the Talon was a great outlet for information and investigative journalism. However, they felt that both the previous and current staff have not done a good job at utilizing it.
Even though I’m a member of the Talon staff, I can’t help but agree. There are plenty of relevant subjects and articles that students of Northwest University would love to read, but I think many of those articles aren’t being written. The Talon gets preoccupied with cliché or outdated subject matter that is only interesting to the poor souls waiting to meet a friend in the Aerie and don’t want to go through the hassle of pulling out their laptop.
Keeping in mind that I’m biased to some degree, I think the Talon should continue to receive its funding, but only if they set a much higher standard. They should be producing better articles. They should be bringing on the best writers they can find. Because if all they do is spit out the same information found on the average student’s Facebook newsfeed, then there’s no point in wasting school funds on redundant “journalism.”