In an era of rapidly changing media landscapes and evolving journalism practices, Bobby Becker, a senior at Tulane University, has taken a bold step forward in reinvigorating student journalism with his brainchild, The College Contemporary. This groundbreaking intercollegiate magazine has quickly emerged as a powerful platform for undergraduate students to share their diverse perspectives on culture, academia, politics, business, and philosophy. With a mission to revitalize student media, Becker and his team aim to provide a voice to aspiring journalists and challenge the status quo of higher education.
Becker’s journey towards founding The College Contemporary was ignited by a fierce commitment to free speech and the unwavering belief in the power of student journalism. As a high school senior, he created the original board game “Barrier Battles,” which garnered immense popularity across the Chicagoland area, giving him a taste of the impact that creative endeavors could have on the community.
However, it was during his tenure as an opinion writer for Tulane’s student newspaper, The Hullabaloo, that Becker’s passion for journalism truly blossomed. His investigative spirit led him to uncover unethical practices by Sodexo, the company responsible for sanitation and food services at Tulane. Despite facing attempts to suppress his work, Becker remained determined to shed light on the truth, ultimately paying the price when he was dismissed from The Hullabaloo.
This experience was a catalyst for Becker’s vision of a student media outlet that would not bow to external pressures or censorship. In response, he penned the inaugural article for The College Contemporary, highlighting the widespread issue of administrations silencing student journalists across universities nationwide.
“The decline of student journalism is a troubling trend that threatens accountability and transparency in higher education,” says Becker. “Our goal with The College Contemporary is to empower students with a platform that transcends the limitations of individual campus newspapers, enabling them to engage in fearless reporting and storytelling.”
The College Contemporary has made impressive strides since its inception, publishing contributions from over 20 different colleges, including prestigious institutions like Harvard, Stanford, University of Chicago, Yale, and Dartmouth. The magazine’s literary branch, “Pretty Good Pieces,” provides a creative outlet for students to share their imaginative writing.
What sets The College Contemporary apart is its commitment to recruiting the brightest minds from student newspapers at top-tier schools. These student journalists possess a unique blend of journalism experience and diverse educational backgrounds, enabling them to craft thought-provoking perspectives on a wide range of topics.
“Our writers are not just journalists; they are students studying various subjects, from history and philosophy to computer science and business,” explains Becker. “This diversity of perspectives gives our publication a fresh and unique edge, setting us apart from traditional media outlets.”
The overarching mission of The College Contemporary encompasses several key objectives, all driven by a deep commitment to fostering a vibrant student journalism landscape. This mission revolves around publishing content that not only celebrates a rich diversity of perspectives but also upholds unwavering ethical and rigorous standards. Furthermore, the magazine strives to create thought-provoking content that resonates with college students, igniting a passion for critical thinking and informed discourse. In parallel, it serves as an invaluable platform for aspiring journalists, offering them a canvas to hone their reporting and storytelling skills. Ultimately, The College Contemporary is dedicated to breathing new life into student media within the college ecosystem, ensuring that the voices of undergraduate students play a pivotal role in shaping narratives and driving change.
Looking to the future, The College Contemporary aims to expand its reach through its website and social media, becoming a well-known and respected publication among college students. Additionally, they plan to secure sponsors to provide stable funding, allowing the magazine to continue publishing influential work by developing journalists. The long-term vision includes establishing a legal team that will enable students to pursue investigative stories without fear of retaliation.
As The College Contemporary continues to grow and flourish, Bobby Becker and his dedicated team are ushering in a new era of student journalism, where the voice of every undergraduate student has the power to shape and challenge the narratives of higher education.
For more information about The College Contemporary and to explore their thought-provoking content, please visit their website at https://collegecontemporary.com/ or follow them on Instagram @collegecontemporary.