The Campus Citizen has been IUPUI’s only student-run independent media outlet since 2011. We strive to provide a voice for the diverse student body at IUPUI, through campus, culture, politics, and sports news, as well as opinion articles. Beyond the written word, we also serve as a distributor of other student media, including podcasts, photography, and videos.
The Campus Citizen traces its legacy as an independent student voice to 1969, when the consolidation of Indiana University-Indianapolis and Purdue University-Indianapolis created the need for a unified student newspaper. As a result, The Sagamore was born in 1971, out of The Component, an offshoot of Purdue West Lafeyette’s The Exponent, and Onomatopoeia, IU-Indianapolis’s combined student newspaper.
Sherry Bennett was the first editor of the paper, whose name meant “lesser-chief,” signifying the important but somewhat less-dignified role of IUPUI compared to its parent institutions.
A year later, genesis Magazine was born on the blossoming campus.
These were troubled times, but the nascent publication thrived by reporting on long-standing issues of importance to the student body. Early on, much of this included inefficiency in the merger of the two schools.
Class requirements were changed. Enrollment statuses were altered. Students in certain programs were moved to a different school without warning. All of this on top of infrastructure issues including a lack of parking space and two campus locations in the city.
An Independent Voice
In the 1980s, the Sagamore investigated systemic issues with housing. Dormitories were destroyed. Lockefield gardens residents were evicted, and their apartments were turned into athlete housing for the Pan-American games. All of this as the campus continued to expand and take a more central role in the city of Indianapolis.
As this happened, The Sagamore successfully defended its existence as an independent voice from IUPUI administrative overreach.
“A free press must also be a responsible press, and that a responsible press makes a maximum effort to be accurate in the presenting of facts, objective in the reporting of events, impartial in the handling of disputed issues, it also seeks to exercise considered judgment in arriving at editorial positions, to take every precaution against the printing of libelous material and to be governed by the canons of good taste, holding the public interest paramount when determining what should or should not be printed” -The Sagamore (1971)
The Student Union Building, replaced by the Campus Center in 2008, played a central role in campus life and student protests throughout this time, as faculty, administrators, and students attempted to build a sense of belonging and unity in what was, and largely remains, a commuter school. And the Sagamore expressed the angry voices of students when it was torn down in the early 2000s.
A Period of Transitioning
Around the time of the Great Recession, administrative overreach and the high costs of local print journalism factored into the paper's shutdown in 2009.
Two years later, The Campus Citizen is proud to pick up their forgotten mantle of independent, investigative journalism.
“Thus, this newspaper is dedicated to the goal of providing effective communication, information, ideas, [and] criticism.… That the student’s world does not end at the boundaries of the campus, but also that news and comment of immediate importance and general interest to the University readership should have priority on the available space.” -The Sagamore (1971)
Who We Serve
Throughout its short tenure, The Campus Citizen has reported on corruption and a lack of transparency in student organizations, massive errors in student meal plans, and investigated sexual assault on campus, all the while keeping a spotlight on all the good things being done on our campus by our students and staff.
After transitioning to an all-online media source in the Fall of 2015, and finally transitioning to the current site in Spring of 2022, we have been able to cut costs and market efficiently through social media. But our work is never over. We hope to continue growing to accompany the diverse audience on our campus of nearly 30,000 and ensure that new voices are able to be heard. All the while, never forgetting who we serve.
“It seems altogether appropriate that a newborn newspaper, and particularly one leaking to unify the roles played by two preceding publications, identity the mission of the newspaper and set forth the policies to be followed in its attempt to fulfill that mission, that service to its readers is the primary purpose of any student press.” - The Sagamore (1971)