At midnight 29 of the 32 pages are complete.
The chief copy editor, Adam Coleman ’01, plays Risk at one computer. Design editor Garrett Smith ’02 and photo editor Alex Morrison ’02 comment on a Goo Goo Dolls song playing on the radio, turned down low. Everyone is waiting for the last few pages to come through as the two news editors, Jennifer Hodess ’02 and Aaron Mason ’02, and the assistant news editor, Ellen Stapleton ’03, try to cut a story that’s a few lines too long and come up with a headline for the lead story.
Since 1931 the Ithacan has served as the news source for the Ithaca College community --- covering everything from the Bombers football season to an exposé of a sexual harassment case. Looking at past issues of the paper provides a historical perspective of the College as well as of the Ithacan. Once-a-Week, the paper’s predecessor, started in 1926 as a general announcement board, notifying students of theater events and physical education news. Reborn as the Ithacan in 1931, the paper gradually began reporting on solid news stories, such as the College’s purchase in 1949 of 190 acres of land on South Hill (administrators and the board of trustees had been considering moving the College to Westchester Country, where they wouldn’t have to compete with another major univer-sity), disputes between faculty and administration, donations from alumni to fund new buildings, dorm life, and campus crimes.
In 1949 the editors of the Ithacan redesigned the paper, increased the page count from four to six, and began generating more ad sales from area businesses. In 1952 students from the paper first attended a statewide conference for student media. And President Howard Dillingham announced in 1963 that he would reduce tuition by $300, based on financial concerns addressed by Student Council --- and the Ithacan.
In 1969 students at the paper decided they wanted to be among only 11 college newspapers to become independent of their institution. This decision was partly due to the editors’ frustration with the College’s practice of retaining all the paper’s advertising revenue. In the following years, the paper reported heavily on several professors who might have been dismissed unfairly. The attention gener-ated from news reports and student protests seemed to convince the College to rehire one education professor. Additionally, a new dress code prohibiting male physical education students from having facial hair, sloppy hairlines, and long sideburns was reversed soon after the paper ran an article criticizing the regulations. While some maintain that the Ithacan should not criticize Ithaca College, Jeff Selingo ’95 says that it was precisely his love of Ithaca College that drove him as an Ithacan journalist. "Many people believe when you criticize the school, you don’t care much about it," he says, "but in fact the opposite is true."
By 1987 the Ithacan was struggling finan-cially and decided to once again accept school support --- but only after administrators promised that the students would retain editorial control. (At the time, the College was in the process of developing a major and minor in journalism and building the Roy H. Park School of Communications.)