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The DePauw student newspaper

THE DEPAUW AT 170: Student newspaper still inspires journalists the world needs

Through various appellations and numerous iterations, the independent student newspaper that covers DePauw University has trained journalists who move beyond Greencastle to cover the world.

For 170 years, many alumni – the exact number is a mystery – have parlayed their experiences at The DePauw to succeed at newspapers, broadcast outlets and, in recent years, digital media platforms. It’s quite a feat for graduates of a university that does not have a journalism school. 

As Doug Frantz ’71 put it in his address last year to his class reunion: “DePauw punches above its weight in terms of producing fine journalists.”

Asbury Notes

The student newspaper, Asbury Notes – so named because DePauw was then Indiana Asbury College – debuted April 7, 1852, self-styled as “a semi-monthly journal devoted to improvement – moral, intellectual, physical, aesthetic.” It was the first printed college newspaper in Indiana. Some years later – 1907-1920 – its successor, the DePauw Daily, made DePauw the smallest university in America to boast a daily newspaper.

The DePauw current masthead

But those distinctions pale compared to the work of former staffers who went on to cover wars, systemic problems, governments, politics, business and more. Staffers such as Frantz, who covered wars and foreign affairs and worked as an investigative reporter for the five best newspapers in America. Such as Bernard Kilgore ’29, a legendary Wall Street Journal editor and president of Dow Jones & Co. Such as Meg Kissinger ’79, who told her readers about frailties in the mental health system and now teaches future journalists. Such as Jon Fortt ’98, who creates platforms to impart his deep understanding of the tech world and to share the Black experience in America. Or such as Dana Ferguson ’14, who in her short career already has covered the legislatures in three states.

The DePauw changed their lives, and their work has changed the lives of countless others across the country and the globe.

DePauw Magazine asked some former staffers who pursued careers in journalism about the effects of their work at The DePauw. Following are the stories of 13 staffers and a former faculty adviser.


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