Student Newspapers at Webster University
Access to the student newspapers
Current print issues of The Journal are available on the first floor of the Emerson Library and on the Journal website. Issues from 1996-97 to the present are located on the library's Lower Level in the Bound Periodical section.
Webster University student newspapers from 1920 to Spring 2008 can be accessed on a library computer by visiting the Emerson Library on the home campus (directions). Internet access to the newspapers is not available at this time. Follow the instructions to search and print articles at the library. If you have questions, contact Kathy Gaynor at (314) 246-7811 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The first student newspaper was called Listen! and its initial issue appeared April 23, 1920. A weekly periodical, the content included mainly brief news items about events, athletics and people, editorials, and jokes and poems. In the beginning, the various classes (freshmen, sophomores, etc.) took turns producing it.
The purpose of Listen!, as stated in the very first issue, was to provide students an opportunity to test their writing skills, promote school spirit and encourage the “formation of a sort of unity among the classes”; “for the paper will be one of common interest and its management such as will excite a general rivalry and competition as to which class can edit the peppiest paper." The authors of that first issue had high hopes for their humble publication: “Loretto College is still young and who knows but that this little paper we are now launching on the sea of amateur journalism may figure quite prominently in the history of our Alma Mater, and shall we not in after years be proud to say that we originated and were the first to publish LISTEN!”
The Web first appeared on October 3, 1924. The November 14 issue stated that the periodical was now being published as part of a journalism class taught by Mrs. Daniel Dillon, "a newspaper woman of wide experience". By the following spring, the newspaper had grown to six pages in length.
A brief article in the April 23, 1925 issue explained the choice of title: “When asked why we named our paper “THE WEB”, our quick retort is to explain that it is the diminutive form of Webster.” ("The Why of 'The Web'", vol. 1, no. 12, p. 2). The Web would continue to be published through December 1970.
The Broadside appeared on Feb. 9, 1971. In that issue the publishers explained that The Web ceased publication due to lack of student interest. The new two-page, biweekly newspaper started as a project of an advanced journalism class. Its goal was to give students experience with working on a newspaper with a focus on straight campus news.
The Weekly Journal
The Weekly Journal appeared on September 17, 1976. The publishers explained that they had chosen the name as it was the same one used by John Peter Zenger’s newspaper, the New York Weekly Journal. The "weekly" in the title was dropped after only a few months.
The Journal (without the "weekly" in its title) appeared on February 4, 1977. It has been published continuously since then and was the first paper to appear online (Journal website).
A few alternative newspapers have made brief appearances over the years:
The Ster appeared on October 3, 1966. The publishers explained the purpose of the new periodical as follows: “The word controversy, implies two sides. A second voice, a second published voice is necessary if stands are to be taken on issues concerning the Webster community. The need for real controversy on our campus is a vital part of the motivating force behind this second newspaper… The choice of the name for the new newspaper was no small decision. Our main concern was to convey the idea that the new paper is to be another voice in the now two-newspaper Webster community." (p. 2) Only nine issues (through May 1967) are available for this publication.
The Student Observer
The Student Observer appeared on March 18, 1993. The following purpose was given: “The Student Observer is a tool for all students. We hope to add to the student life an understanding of our university.” (p. 12). Only two issues are in existence.
The Wasteland appeared on March 1993. The paper was published by the Webster University Journalism Association which described their publication as follows: “The Webster University Journalism Association’s function is to initiate on campus activity through exchange of ideas via The Wasteland." (p. 2) Only two issues are in existence.