On Jan. 28, the Oxford Press page of the Journal-News ran for the last time. The Press started as an independent newspaper for the community nearly a century ago, but it had been an insert for the Journal-News for the past few years. Now, it’s gone entirely.
Local news is essential for every community. A dedicated community paper increases civic engagement and often leads to more candidates running for office. It offers a centralized source of information on events and local government decisions. It can even help nurture a shared sense of community identity and become a source of pride for residents.
The loss of the Press, reduced as it was to a single page of stories once a week in a larger paper, is a loss nonetheless.
That’s why The Miami Student is introducing a new section focused solely on Oxford this semester.
For years, the staff at The Student has worked to expand our coverage of Oxford. This work has ranged from biweekly stories on city council meetings to features of local businesses and in-depth stories covering the Talawanda School District’s attempt to pass a levy. Now, those stories will have a dedicated space in each print edition.
Our Oxford section will build on our current coverage of Oxford City Council, Talawanda School Board and more. Beyond that, we’re open to letters to the editor, regular columns and guest columns from members of the community looking for a platform to share their stories and opinions on topics relevant to other Oxford residents.
This week, we’re covering how one yoga studio is focusing on the spiritual side of the practice, taking a look at the history of Brick Street Bar and digging into the Oxford Fire Department’s budgetary woes. In the coming weeks, we’ll be launching a newsletter dedicated to Oxford stories, and we’re excited to keep growing in this direction.
As this section develops, we’ll need feedback from the community to better understand what everyone wants and needs out of local news coverage. We’re a staff of full-time students with heavy course loads and extracurriculars. Some important stories, especially those that develop off-campus, can slip under the radar without a community to help us find them.
We want the Oxford section to center our audience of this city’s permanent residents, not just the students who call Oxford home for four years. If our past coverage has failed to adequately serve the Oxford community, or if there’s something specific we aren’t covering that you want us to focus on, feel free to let us know.
For now, you can find our coverage online at miamistudent.net, follow us on social media and pick up our print edition every other week. Our current distribution locations include the Oxford Community Arts Center, the municipal building, Kofenya, Bodega, Kroger, the Oxford Lane Library, Best Western, Ace Hardware, Patterson’s Cafe, United Dairy Farmers, the Elms Hotel, DuBois Bookstore and the Oxford Chamber of Commerce.
Have ideas for what we should cover next? Feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or connect with our Oxford editors Anna Reier and Raquel Hirsch at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Until next time,