WILMINGTON — At Wilmington College, there’s a group of students writing their hearts out. Not on a term paper or class project, but for the latest articles for the college’s newspaper, The Witness.
The current staff of 11 students, whose majors range from Communications to Business Management, meets on Tuesdays at the Robinson Communications Center to discuss the stories they’re writing.
Their pieces range from Quakers’ sporting events to new campus groups. They also tackle topics ranging from big ones like net neutrality to smaller ones like shopping tips for this holiday season.
While The Witness used to be all print until around 2010 — when they started primarily publishing online with a special print edition once a semester — Editor Maraya Wahl, who first started as a writer her freshman year in 2013, said they’re hoping to get a weekly or monthly print edition at some point.
The printed versions have what Wahl described as overarching articles that defined the semester. She believes that it’s a reflection of their staff and what they do.
“We spend more time on these articles. We talk about them the whole semester and stress the importance of them,” said Wahl. “Our weekly articles online are what’s going on this week or a topic that’ll interest students. Whereas with (the printed articles), you’re definitely trying to get more depth on whatever the organization is or the event happening.”
Among the students are Brandon Williams, a senior majoring in Communication Arts and minoring in Business Administration. Williams noted his passion for sports played a role in him signing up two semesters ago.
“I’ve always loved sports, I like reading sports articles, and somebody came to me with the idea of writing about it and I thought, sure,” said Williams.
Since writing about the various Quaker teams, Williams said it’s opened his mind to events going around that he wouldn’t have known about or attended, making him feel more connected to the campus. He also applied for a broadcast graduate program at Syracuse University emphasizing sports.
Hillary Mitchell, a Journalism major, got started straight away during her freshman year in 2015 with writing a column series called “Freshie Fix” talking about problems new students might face and how to deal with them. Since then she became The Witness’ copy editor.
“I figured it was the right place to be and I just never left,” said Mitchell.
While Journalism and Communications students certainly benefit from the writing experience, any student is welcomed to write according to Wahl, a senior majoring in Political Science and Business.
“We extend this out to this entire student population. Anybody can be a volunteer writer,” said Wahl. “It’s laid back enough to where it’s not overwhelming to peoples’ schedule. I’ve found it to be a way to be involved on campus.”
Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574