Opinion Web Exclusive

Center for Student Media promises marked improvements

Callie Parrish//The Daily Cougar

Callie Parrish/The Daily Cougar

The Center for Student Media supports three major student media organizations: COOG Radio, The Daily Cougar and the Student Video Network.

The CSM homepage also says, “At the center, students are engaged in journalism, publishing, promotion, marketing, advertising, media production, graphic design, radio broadcasting and management.”

The CSM started in August and used to be Student Publications, the former department name for professional staff. “The staff is now training ourselves to call each other CSM,” said Matt Dulin, director of CSM. Student Publications publishes Transitions — a magazine usually given out at freshman and transfer student orientation to help them acclimate at UH — and the Houstonian, our school yearbook.

Now that CSM has united all three student media organizations, the goal is to improve the student media experience. “Each organization will give up something but will be gaining something at the end of the day,” Dulin said. For example, one organization might give up air time or budget money and give it to one of the other organizations. However, this does not mean that the quality of the student publications will go down.

Make no mistake; there will be a visible change.

“Student-run organizations will look a little bit different,” said Justin Schneewind, production assistant for CSM. “CSM is there to make sure that the three main organizations will be producing quality work.”

Basically, CSM is there to keep the three organizations on their toes. However, that doesn’t mean they will be taking the student out of student media.

“The Center is to be passionately driven by students,” Dulin said.

Under CSM, the three organizations will ultimately support each other and help each other out. “When you have a support network, you can really take off,” Dulin said.

Having the support network will certainly make improvements within CSM. It’s there to help the students do whatever they need to do to be successful in media. Of course, this success also extends outside UH. “The main goal is that we want all student organizations to be nationally recognized,” Dulin said.

How will CSM cause more collaboration? “Although all these groups will be under one group, they will naturally figure things out. CSM will not force collaboration,” Dulin said. CSM will encourage collaboration by making it easier for them to communicate with each other.

It will no longer be three separate, competing groups trying to haggle information out of each other. Now, they will be working together as one single organization toward the same goal: bringing Cougars the best in entertainment and news, provided by students for students.

This “under one roof” concept is more than just figurative. CSM will be moved to the New UC’s North section, making the connection completely literal.

“This will cause more interaction and collaboration within the three organizations” by making them all neighbor organizations, Schneewind said.

The success of CSM will be a good motivator for the rest of our campus because it will be a model for a good community: students supporting each other and pushing each other to be better. With luck, CSM will just be another thing helping UH into the national limelight.

Opinion columnist Callie Parrish is a math and art senior and may be reached at [email protected].

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