How Covid Impacted This Newspaper
While the rest of the university returns to what can be seen as the new normal of pandemic life, this newspaper is also trying to get back to business. The fact that this issue, the first of the 2021-’22 academic year, is on newspaper print is in itself a positive change.
When the university shut down in March 2020, The Delphian had just published and distributed the March issue of the printed paper. The staff then didn’t know it would be nearly 17 months before there would be another printed edition. That’s because without students on campus to read subsequent issues, the staff made the decision to produce and distribute PDFs for the three remaining issues of that school year. Once the fall semester began, with a hybrid school year during which most students remained at home, the staff couldn’t figure out a safe way to distribute print editions. And so, for the entire 2020-’21 academic year, this newspaper was produced and distributed campus wide as PDFs. There were 10 issues, including an inaugural orientation issue just for first years. Thanks to the help of University Communications, the Department of Communications and many others, the paper was shared widely beyond campus to include alumni.
In addition, in October 2020, the staff launched a new website, www.thedelphianau.com/ so that Adelphi students could continue to get up-to-date student reporting throughout the entire year.
With the return of most students to campus, current editor-in-chief Maxmillian Robinson and the rest of The Delphian staff have decided to print and distribute each issue going forward.
Robinson said, “We will remain responsive to any university Covid-19 policies that could change our plans, but we hope to give students access to the award-winning paper. I’m glad that we’re able to give the printed word to students this year because it takes us away from the screen and allows us to reminisce about the good old times.”
Meanwhile, ours wasn’t the only student newspaper that made the decision to stop printing during the past year. According to Michael Karff, senior sales executive with Richner Printing in Garden City, who will this year be printing The Delphian this year, of the papers they regularly print for local high schools and colleges all stopped printing early in the pandemic. By last semester, he said, some trickled back, though where they used to print 12 issues, they did only three.
“Some chose to go digital moving forward, which I think is a mistake because students won't learn my industry for job opportunities,” Karff said. “Another issue is that some schools cut their budgets and the first thing to go was the school newspaper.”
Karff said students can work around that by being active in getting advertising for their papers, both through local businesses and national networks.
This newspaper is funded through a combination of advertising dollars and funds from the Student Government Association. With funds in hand and a dedicated new editorial staff and several new writers to cover news, features, opinions and sports, we're ready to print again. Our mission is to continue through the academic year, slowly easing our way back into a normal world we all can relate to. We look forward to publishing more issues and getting feedback from Panthers. If you want to join our stable of writers, help with production, sell ads or work on our website, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.