Inspired by the misinformation circulated surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, generations of The Athenaeum alumni are coming together to establish The Athenaeum Journalism Award to support aspiring journalists on Acadia’s campus. This will provide those with an interest in this vital field with the funding they need to continue their studies.
Since 1874, The Athenaeum has been the definitive student voice of Acadia University. Founded in 1874 as a student literary magazine, The Athenaeum continued in its original format until the 1940s, when it became a more traditional newspaper.
Since that point, The Athenaeum has proven integral to Acadia’s history. It has documented the institution’s changes and nurtured generations of alumni from journalists to Senators, scientists to business tycoons, and generations of activists. It has been the subject of controversy, from the Tavern Ad to the Fiander Scandal and debates over explicit cover material.
In celebration of The Athenaeum’s 150th anniversary in 2024, The Athenaeum Journalism Award will be granted to a returning writer of the newspaper who has displayed journalistic excellence, commitment to The Athenaeum, and demonstrates promise in campus journalism. Recipients are chosen annually at the discretion of The Athenaeum Publishing Board.
By November 2024 – the 150th anniversary of the first edition of The Athenaeum – the goal is to have raised $25,000 necessary for an endowment in perpetuity. This will ensure that there will always be a free press at Acadia University.
The Need For Journalism
The Athenaum has been absolutely necessary in holding Acadia University to account and asking questions that deserve answers.
But today, the very bedrock of journalism is under threat. The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the power of misinformation and the need for a truly independent press. A strong fourth estate is needed now more than ever.
This award will allow for reporting that is steadfast, unbiased, and accurate to continue at Acadia University.
The Athenaeum Journalism Award will be given to returning writers have displayed journalistic excellence, commitment to The Athenaeum, and demonstrate promise in campus journalism.
This will help aspiring journalists launch their career in a world where a strong independent media is increasingly important. Awards will be given out annually at the discretion of The Athenaeum Publishing Board, a body comprised of students and faculty responsible for oversight of the newspaper.
“I have many fond memories of spending late nights in the SUB with the team, scrambling to get the stories in and put the paper together before deadline. We were quite the ragtag team, with students from almost every department at Acadia taking part. That’s what was so much fun about The Athenaeum — you weren’t just working with your classmates; you were making new connections with lots of other people at the university.”
– Janice Hudson (’04)
“The experience gained in that SUB newsroom gave me the confidence to take on a real reporting job. I never got to journalism school, but I was hooked on local news for over 40 years.”
– Wendy Elliott (’77)