By Brooke Greene / Staff Writer

As newspapers struggle among the strong grip that our social media outlets have over younger generations, it becomes more and more important to pass on the traditions and knowledge of the printed papers.

Rather than solely work with an online news edition, Hutchinson Community College has thrived in getting students involved in news outlets. The Hutchinson Collegian has partnered with The Hutchinson News for many years as the the company that prints The Collegian, but the partnership is gaining depth.

This week, starting with the Feb. 19 print edition, The Collegian and The News have agreed to include Collegian staff writer’s articles in the Hutch News’ print editions.

“The Hutchinson Collegian and The News have been professional allies for some time – we print the Collegian here in Hutchinson, and work with staff at HutchCC when a college-related story crops up. The News is excited to offer a platform for writers at the Collegian to reach a broad audience,” said Cheyenne Derksen, the Managing Editor at Hutch News.

Brad Hallier, the journalism advisor at HutchCC reached out to The News in hopes to find a way for journalism students to get their articles more involved in the community. The Collegian covers local news as well, which makes for local content in a newspaper that is already struggling from staff being cut off due to the pandemic and budget restrictions.

“I’m always thinking of ways to get journalism students chances to build a vast portfolio and resume,” Hallier said. “By having their articles printed in The Hutchinson News, students with The Hutchinson Collegian will be able to add something to their resume, that they have had work printed in a daily newspaper that reaches as far southwest as Elkhart. This also allows more newspaper readers to see what is going on our campus, and it gives us a potential recruiting boost, as our students’ work will be in many cities the college recruits high school students from, including McPherson, Newton, Lyons, Dodge City, Garden City, Scott City, Liberal and many others.

“We will send our stories to The News by Thursday. They may use any or all stories in their print edition as soon as Friday, or the day our print edition comes out, or any time after. We just ask our stories come out in print first before they use them. The News doesn’t have to use any of them either. It’ll be their choice, as far as what they use in print. We have not worked out details regarding using our stories on The News’ web site yet, but we hope we can find a way that benefits both newspapers.”

This could be an amazing opportunity for our community, as news may become more transparent and accessible throughout Hutch and the surrounding areas. The Collegian and The News have collaborated for a long time, with deeper connections than just the printed papers. Students have even been reached out to for jobs as prepress technicians through The News, such as Kyran Crist, the Online Editor for the Collegian, to get their foot in the door in a constantly evolving career field.

“When students graduate, they’ll face a diverse audience, rather than only their peers,” Derksen said. “At The News, student journalists can tell stories and share information needed in the Hutchinson community on the whole.

When the Collegian prints, I would walk back into the print shop and pick up a copy to read, just for myself, to keep up to date on HutchCC happenings. Now I’m glad to share those stories that interested me with other readers in our community who might not have access to the college’s publication.”

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