"The Fine Print" is an independent, progressive student publication, based in Gainesville, FL. The paper was started by a small group of students, because we felt that local issues, especially student issues, were not properly represented in the current student paper, "The Alligator."
Currently, my university is experiencing severe budget cuts. Programs are being downsized, student fees are increasing, yet our president recently got a hefty bonus. The main student newspaper was not questioning the University's spending practices. Instead of complaining, we decided to do something, and started “The Fine Print.” We felt that the only way to make people aware of the issues that plague our university was to make the information and knowledge available.
Beside questioning the spending habits of our university, we have worked in conjunction with other student groups, to suggest solutions. We have published numerous articles on “Socially Responsible Investing,” in which we call for investments made with the University's endowment to be published quarterly. The University is also installing hand scanners at the campus gyms, which we think is absurd, as everyone has an identification card. We have worked with student groups to publicize this issue as well.
The biggest issue we have written about is Aramark, a huge corporation that sells meal plans to prisons and schools. At our University, meal plans force students to pay an outrageously hight price for an amount of food that they can never eat. Aramark also controls all the food on campus, and usually raises prices and decrease menu options. We have written in depth articles, as well as taken a humorous approach at times, such as “Aramark Recipes”
We feel that it is important to have a progressive news outlet for students. Many students are busy, and do not know to seek out alternative information. We feel that by making it available to students, we feel we can motivate others to take a stand in issues that matter to them.