Student media needs own funding source
March 11, 2010
As inflation drives up costs on everything in the US, it cannot be forgotten that these spikes also negatively influence operating costs to efficiently and effectively run various campus media. At UW-River Falls, there are four main campus media outlets: The Student Voice, “Prologue,” Focus on U and WRFW. As budgets get cut and costs of printing, broadcasting and publishing go up, the Student Voice Editorial Board proposes a possible solution.
The Board proposes tacking on an additional $5 to students’ fees for help in keeping UWRF’s campus media afloat. In light of the amount of tuition, living and other fees, $5 shouldn’t be viewed as too high. Figuring about 5,500 students pay $5 a piece, each semester, around $27,500 could be collected for respective distribution to each of the four media on campus. That is $55,000 a year.
The Student Voice could use $24,000 of the amount to cover printing costs, office supplies and to provide to the fund to cover newsworthy event admission costs each year. WRFW could redeem $17,000 to cover payroll and operating costs, and “Prologue” could use about $3,000 of the money for printing and staff’s pay each year. Focus on U currently uses around $2,500 a year, but with the proposed fee, they could receive around $5,000 to upgrade their techniques, ultimately bettering their productions.
With all of the proposed amounts in place, there could be an extra $6,000 each year in the campus media pot. This money could be used to produce another print publication, an alternative to the Student Voice. The additional publication could allow UWRF to match other UW-System schools, who publish more than one paper each week.
The idea of an entirely Web-based radio broadcast could also be pitched around and funded by the media fees. In addition, an expansion in the television broadcast division of the campus media could be possible. Allowing for more news-specific broadcast hours could benefit the UWRF campus and community.
Not only would the media fees benefit UWRF media, other organizations would also see positive effects as a result of this addition $5 fee. With the money from the media fees being the only funding for campus media, other organizations would be able to use the money that is currently funding the Student Voice, “Prologue,” Focus on U and WRFW for their own benefit.
An additional $5 to each students’ tuition and fees each semester could greatly change the course of campus media at UWRF, ensuring that it will never disappear.