The Society for Collegiate Journalists: A Foundation of Democracy

The Society for Collegiate Journalists: A Foundation of Democracy

Melissa W.

The entire world was on the edge of its seat this week as the days rolled on and ballots were being counted to declare who won the US Presidential Election. Twenty-four hour news channels and reputable journalistic sources such as the Associated Press (AP), The New York Times, The Washington Post, and others got all the attention while we waited for them to make the call which ultimately came on Saturday morning at 11:25 via the AP. No matter the outcome, it was an exciting time to be a journalist and members of The Society for Collegiate Journalists can attest to that!

The Society for Collegiate Journalists (SCJ) was formed in 1975 after the merging of Pi Delta Epsilon and Alpha Phi Gamma. According to its website, SCJ “is the nation’s oldest honor society for student media leaders. Journalism is a foundation of democracy, and to ensure its future, SCJ focuses on professional development at the collegiate level. SCJ advances ethical, accurate, and innovative collegiate journalism nationally and creates a strong network of advocates for First Amendment education.” 

The local chapters of SCJ “sponsor workshops, seminars, and speakers intended to help their members improve their practice of journalism on the campus and prepare for professional careers after graduation.” Promoting ethical journalism, SCJ gives student journalists and campus newspapers a number of nationally-recognized awards and scholarships each year. 

The Society for Collegiate Journalists is merit-based and not rooted in educational standing, opening its membership to students dedicated to the unbiased and ethical distribution of current or past events based on facts with supporting evidence. “Because the Society stands for service, membership in it is not to be regarded as an honor in itself, but also as an opportunity for rendering greater service. Whatever traditions may accrue to the Society and its membership in the future, none shall ever supplant the tradition of service.”

SCJ currently has 100 active chapters nationwide with 1,200 members.* You’ll recognize members of SCJ by their red honor cords on graduation day.

red honor cord from senior class graduation products

Are you a journalist or a member of SCJ? Let us know in the comments!

*One of our staff members is a member of SCJ!


Photo by The Climate Reality Project on Unsplash

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