The saddest fact about summer is that it is the quietest part of the year for student media. That does not have to mean that student publications should stop producing content for that period, however.
Of course it is a shame that there is such an agonisingly long wait before the next print edition, but there is no need to wait.
If you are a writer for a student publication, then keep pitching ideas. If you are a section editor, then keep commissioning articles. When a new wave of potential student journalists (or freshers, as they are more commonly known) join your university in September and go to look at the website of your publication, do you want them to see a load of out of date content from the end of the previous academic year, or do you want them to see that you’ve kept writing throughout the summer?
Obviously it is a little more difficult now than it is during term time to find news specific to your university, but it’s not impossible. Many university press offices will still be open during weekdays and there is still plenty of national news to cover.
It is important to keep writing in some capacity during the summer – ideally for multiple places if you can, you have more free time to make pitches to national publication now than you ever will during the academic year – but especially for keeping the content flowing at your student publication.
Keeping your writers engaged and maintaining contact with them during the break is very important. The start of a new academic year often proves to be the most difficult time to find writers, and while there will be plenty of new writers joining, you want to be adding them to the more experienced writers you already have.
It is also a chance to experiment a bit with the kinds of articles you write, and to explore sections that you are less familiar with and usually do not have the time to research.
Many student publications have produced some excellent articles so far this summer, and we try to include all the best ones in our Splash Sundays.
If your publication has written something you want included in one of our Splash Sundays, please let us know. Email anything you want included to firstname.lastname@example.org