Members of the Interfraternity Council, the group that governs CSU Greeks, passed a resolution Monday expressing support for a student media independent of corporate interests.
The resolution comes after CSU President Larry Penley held a secret meeting in January with two Gannett representatives, Coloradoan publisher Christine Chin and executive editor Bob Moore, to discuss the media conglomerate’s interest in attaining the Collegian as a for-profit newspaper.
The meeting, arranged in early November, was conducted without Student Media representatives present. Katie Gleeson, president of the Associated Students of CSU, attended the meeting and later said she lobbied heavily for Student Media representation in the meeting.
Penley, who denied discussing an all-out sale of the paper, charged Chin and Moore to create a formal proposal, listing what Gannett, the nation’s largest media corporation, could offer to the CSU community through “a strategic partnership.”
But despite their fair share of negative coverage and criticism on the opinion pages of the Collegian, Greeks said they’d rather have students covering their organizations, not a media giant.
“I wanted to bring it up with the council delegates and see what their opinions were,” said Mike Rager, IFC president and author of the resolution. “I just hope it strengthens the relationship between IFC and the Collegian and shows our support for student-run organizations.”
Supporters of the resolution said Collegian coverage of Greek community and philanthropy events in the past motivated them to issue their support.
“We voted for the resolution because we realize Greek Life has been supported by the Collegian for many years, and we wanted to continue that,” said Steven Thomas, delegate for the Sigma Chi fraternity. “We don’t know if an outside business coming in would affect the support we have from Student Media.”
One fraternity, Sigma Phi Epsilon (SPE), abstained from the secret ballot vote.
The IFC endorsement comes three weeks after a similar resolution supporting independent student media was introduced to the ASCSU Senate. The ASCSU resolution is currently under committee review without a set deadline.
CSU officials announced today that a proposal-review committee, charged with accepting and reviewing all proposals for change to the Student Media, has been formed.
That group, a so-called “advisory board,” is scheduled to meet Thursday, from 4-6 p.m. in the D.C. Bottoms at the Durell Center.
The committee will review any forthcoming proposals requesting partnerships with or specific changes to Student Media, which includes the Collegian; KCSU, the campus radio station; CTV, the campus TV station; and College Avenue, the campus magazine.
The committee, chaired by Blanche Hughes, vice president of Student Affairs, will be composed of students, faculty and community members, and will include representatives from the Collegian, CTV, KCSU and College Avenue.
News Editor Erik Myers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.