Student publication celebrates 50 years of reporting the news
By Camyle Cryderman, Editor-in-chief
In February of 1966, five years after Schoolcraft College was established, the first student run newspaper was published on campus. At just four pages long, the newspaper, then known as the “Commuter” was a work in progress, but a momentous one at that. Now, exactly 50 years after the first Schoolcraft newspaper was published, the publication has evolved into an award winning success.
Now known as the “Schoolcraft Connection,” the newspaper has gone through many transitions and made drastic content changes as well. Before deciding on its current title, the newspaper was known as “The Commuter” from 1966 to 1969, “The Back Door” from 1969 to 1971, “The Campus Globe” from 1971 to 1985, “The Campus Beat” from 1985 to 1986 until it finally became the Schoolcraft Connection in 1987. The original issue of the paper featured stories about the school’s dress code, a student fundraiser and the first plans to build the iconic Waterman building on campus. Through the years, the newspaper has continued to evolve into a wealth of information sharing articles about events on campus, popular movie reviews and student profiles throughout.
There to see the transition of it all was former newspaper advisor Sherry Springer. She began as the Assistant Director of the Student Activities Office in 1987, and later that year became the first advisor of the Schoolcraft Connection. In her more than 25 years in the position, she proudly developed the newspaper into what it is today.
“The excitement of it all was the best part of my time there,” said Springer. “Being able to go out and teach the students how to write and interview was very rewarding.”
Guiding the newspaper staff to win awards like “Overall General Excellence,” “Best All-Around Non-Daily Newspaper,” and the esteemed “Best Community College Newspaper in Michigan,” Springer helped spark the passion for journalism in many students.
“While originally studying graphic design, I found a love for photography that may not have been discovered if it wasn’t for my time spent working for the Schoolcraft Connection,” said Michael Simari, Schoolcraft Connection Photography Editor in 2008. “Being Photo Editor at the Connection taught me so much on how to be self-sufficient while having to keep organized.”
Simari now works as the Online Staff Photographer for Car and Driver in part thanks to his time on the Schoolcraft newspaper.
Not only has the student newspaper on campus helped impact the future career and schooling of former workers, but it has helped improve the lives of many.
“Being an editor for the Schoolcraft Connection taught me a lot about the journalism industry, but also about myself,” said former Editor-in-Chief Lauren Lukens from the 2014-2015 school year.
The Schoolcraft Connection has been under a new adviser, Rena Laverty, since 2012. With a growing editor and staff team, the newspaper is only improving. Later this spring the Connection team will travel to Mt. Pleasant for the annual Michigan Community College Press Association awards presentation and hope to continue the tradition of journalism excellence.
Among the changes that have occurred over the years, The Schoolcraft Connection has become an online publication as well. Featuring pdf versions of every edition of the paper and online exclusive articles, people around the world can stay up to date on Schoolcraft news at schoolcraftconnection.com.
Over the past 50 years, a lot has changed at Schoolcraft, but one thing has stayed constant: The Schoolcraft Newspaper. With a goal of spreading news and entertainment on campus, the Connection hopes that its 50 years of service has brought insight and joy to its readers. The Schoolcraft Connection would like to thank all of its viewers and supporters over the years as well as Schoolcraft College and is looking forward to 50 more years of delivering the news to the campus community.