Staff editorial: Reinventing The Wheel

This year marks a huge transition for The Wheel. We officially became paperless by embracing an online host and reconstructing the organization as a whole. This came with plenty of benefits, but we are always looking for innovative ways to reinvent The Wheel.

A major benefit of the online transition is an increase in readership. In the paper days, The Wheel printed a total of 400 newspaper copies per month. Now, an average of 1,115 readers visit the site per month. Online capabilities made St. Kate’s news stories more accessible to students, faculty and staff, parents and the community.

“By transitioning The Wheel to an online news site, it enables a greater readership for our campus and the worldwide community,” Wheel advisor Maricella Miranda said. “The Wheel has attracted readers from as far away as France, China and Brazil. The website also connects our Minneapolis students to news on the St. Paul campus.”

The site also makes it easier for readers to interact and have an input in their news. Readers can comment on stories, reach out to the author, submit letters to the editor and make story suggestions much more easily than in the past because contact information is just a click away.

Our goal as a staff is to improve at every opportunity. After the senior staff members graduate, a new editorial board will take their positions at the beginning of the 2015-16 school year and will continue to uphold expectations of progress. We welcome Jaimee Leibfried ’17 as Editor in Chief, Emma Hargreaves ’18 as Website and Social Media Manager and Kourtney Johnson ‘17 as an Assistant Editor. Maggie Singerhouse ’17 and Katie Rolfes ‘17 will reprise their roles of Assistant Editor and Copy Editor.

“I wanted the role of Website and Social Media Manager because I thought it would be great to learn more about websites, and I’ve always had an interest in social media so I thought ‘Why not?’ I’m most excited about learning something new and being more involved with The Wheel; I’m really looking forward to it,” Hargreaves said.

The first task of the editorial board is to hire new Multimedia Journalists. The Wheel has three positions open next year and interested Katies can apply here. Multimedia Journalists attend biweekly meetings, write stories, take photos and work together with their editor to create a story of which they can be proud.

“My favorite part of being a journalist is having the opportunity to write about things I feel are important not only to me but to my fellow Katie’s. I love being able to show my friends and family the hard work that I’ve put into it, as well as brag just a little that it was actually published,” Multimedia Journalist Mary Pickett ‘18 said.

Alongside hiring, The Wheel is also planning on giving the website a facelift to make it look more professional, rather than blog-like. Hargreaves, Leibfried and Miranda will discuss and implement design improvements throughout the summer.

Another project of the Editorial Board is to link St. Kate’s radio station, Radio Here, to the website. This would create a hub of media, supplying the community with a one-stop news source.

Help keep The Wheel rolling by contacting wheel@stkate.edu with any suggestions or story ideas. We strive to cover topics that connect with the St. Kate’s community, and we value all feedback. Keep an eye out for the upcoming changes; we hope you enjoy the ride.

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