The D -- Dartmouth's very own school of journalism

by Brad Russo | 8/1/00 5:00am

Right now you are reading an issue of Dartmouth's only daily newspaper -- The Dartmouth.

"The D," as it is known around campus, is an entirely student-run enterprise, and it is the only daily source of campus news, sports, arts and opinions.

Five days a week, members of The D's staff work from 7 a.m. -- when the student carriers arrive at the offices on the second floor of Robinson Hall to begin delivering the paper -- to about 3 a.m. the next morning, when the paper goes to bed and the senior editors hurry home for a quick sleep.

Founded in 1799 by a small band of enterprising students including, Daniel Webster (Class of 1801), The D is the oldest college newspaper in America -- and one of the oldest U.S. newspapers of any kind.

The Dartmouth is delivered to students' Hinman mail boxes at the Hopkins Center or dorm doors Monday through Friday mornings, and is required reading for anyone at Dartmouth who wants to know what's happening at the College and in the world.

Inside The Dartmouth

The World and Nation page keeps readers abreast of what's happening in the "real world" and in the stock market.

The Sports page keeps readers informed of each one of Dartmouth's athletic squads and provides professional sports coverage as well. Every Monday look to The Dartmouth's pull-out "Sports Extra" for eight pages devoted to the world of sports, both on campus and beyond.

The Arts & Entertainment page features CD, book, movie and play reviews written by our arts staff, as well as previews and features on important campus arts events. Each Friday the Arts & Entertainment staff produces the "Weekend Access" -- an eight-page pull-out section devoted to arts and lifestyles featuring a guide of the weekend's activities in Hanover and its surroundings.

The Op-Ed page, perhaps the most-read section of the newspaper, is home to some of the best debates on campus. The D prints submissions from the Dartmouth and Hanover communities, and is also home to an army of staff columnists and cartoonists. And when there is a salient campus issue, odds are The D's editorial board will weigh in with an opinion of its own.

The Dartmouth Online -- www.thedartmouth.com -- is updated daily so Internet users all over the world can keep up to date with Dartmouth events. Thedartmouth.com's online staff works hard to make sure the site features not only the latest news from the paper, but also material unique to the online version, which is important since the site receives over 20,000 hits per day.

Independent journalism

The D is completely student run -- student editors research and assign stories that are written by student reporters; student photographers capture the images that are seen in the paper; students are responsible for the layout and design of the printed page; and student representatives solicit and design the advertisements that help keep the newspaper in business.

The D is also entirely independent from the College. The Dartmouth, Inc. leases its office space from the College and enjoys complete and total editorial freedom.

Getting involved

Unlike most other campus organizations, The D is a place where freshmen can jump right in and make an immediate impact -- whether you were editor-in-chief of your high school paper or you have never before written a newspaper article.

No matter what your interests or prior experiences in journalism, The Dartmouth welcomes you with open arms. Each year The D attracts a bright corps of new reporters, many of whom ascend to editorial positions during their junior year.

From writing to taking photographs to selling advertisements, The Dartmouth offers a wealth of hands-on experience that will be useful to you at Dartmouth and years after.

Staff members of The Dartmouth have in recent years held internships at CNN, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, TheStreet.com and Hearst newspaper syndicate -- and many of our writers have gone on to full time jobs at The Times and The Post after graduation.

The D has produced many high-profile journalists, including former USA Today editor-in-chief Peter Prichard, Wall Street Journal columnist and 2000 Pulitzer Prize winner Paul Gigot, former editor of the New Republic and current Fox News host Morton Kondracke, New York Times writers Christopher Wren, David Rosenbaum and Jacques Steinberg, and Philadelphia Inquirer columnist David Boldt.

Despite being in a small rural area, Dartmouth often finds itself in the national spotlight -- and The D has always been right there to cover the news.

As New Hampshire basked in the nation's attention during this year's "First in the Nation" primary, D reporters got unique access to John McCain, Al Gore, Steve Forbes and Elizabeth Dole. D reporters were also able to cover the first Presidential debates which took place at the College like journalists from no other news source.

When controversy surrounding the Trustee Social and Residential Life Initiative brought Dartmouth into the national spotlight, national news media organizations looked to The Dartmouth for accurate and complete coverage.

And when Dartmouth sports teams have excelled, The D has been there with extensive coverage.

The Dartmouth, Inc. -- a $350,000 corporation that is run by a nine-member student board -- is charged with maintaining the long-term financial health of the newspaper.

Though The D is now a fairly large business and manages not only the paper but a delivery service for The New York Times, Boston Globe, USA Today and The Wall Street Journal, it wasn't always that way.

The history of the paper

When it was founded in 1799, it was called The Dartmouth Gazette, and published quite irregularly.

In June 1820, the Gazette became The Dartmouth Herald.

Another two decades passed and in November 1839, The Dartmouth Herald changed its name to The Dartmouth. Around 1875, it became a weekly paper, and in 1920, the student editors voted to go to the current daily format.

Last spring, The Dartmouth celebrated its Bicentennial with a weekend-long reunion which brought more than 100 D alums back to Hanover.

We'll be having a few open houses for anyone interested in The D during the first week of Fall term -- keep an eye out for the exact dates and times when you arrive in Hanover.

You can fill out a subscription form in this issue and mail it to us to begin receiving The D once Fall term begins. You don't want to be left out when it comes to knowing what is happening on campus.

We look forward to meeting you and introducing you to Dartmouth College's one and only school in undergraduate journalism.

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