in Houston, Texas
San Antonio College administrator who wanted fee for interviews with student journalists rebuffed again
Friday, Jun 08, 2012, 11:04AM CST
By Steve Miller
Alamo logo

The student newspaper for Alamo Colleges in San Antonio continues to stir it up, only this time it has had considerable help from an administrator who wants to start his own newspaper.

Jorge Posadas, student-life director at San Antonio College, one of Alamo’s five campuses, told the student newspaper, The Ranger, that he’d like to raise the student activities fee next year from $1 to $2 per credit hour to launch a competing “student-run” newspaper.

Posadas’ gripe is that The Ranger is controlled by faculty, standard for many college newspapers. In many cases, the job of student newspaper advisor is a much-coveted job, occasionally even going to an instructor with hands-on newspaper experience.

Of course this idea of a new paper comes from a guy, Posadas, who at one time asked for cash from the newspaper for an interview, then pretended it was all a misunderstanding. His pay-to-play request got him a bit of scrutiny from the top, but he continues to collect his $54,635 a year salary.

As far as the Posadas Presshe tried to sneak it in first in a budgetary item that was unanimously approved by the Student Activity Fee Committee at the college in April. It was $70,000 for student publications.

It was later discovered that the purpose of that money was a Ranger competitor. That prompted San Antonio College President Robert Zeigler to publicly back The Ranger and refute the notion of a new publication.

Posadas has another great idea that is so far on hold: a camera to observe the kids in the student center.

“Students are students. Sometimes, they do things they shouldn’t be doing,” Posadas said.

There has been an ongoing flap at Alamo over The Ranger’s aggressive coverage of the administration. In one case, the paper claimed it was initially denied access to applications of people seeking to be on the board of trustees without a formal open records request.

We ran that item and found more than a few people emailing and calling.

Most were instructors at the school, who were on the side of the newspaper.

Something is going on at Alamo, and it was portrayed in those calls as a battle between the faculty and administation.

A look at Alamo’s website finds a pretty fair degree of financial transparency.

A call to the Alamo press office, now on a Monday-Thursday, four-day workweek, was not returned.

Editor's Note: The title of San Antonio College President Robert Zeigler was corrected on June 11.

***
Contact Steve Miller at 832-303-9420 or stevemiller@texaswatchdog.org.

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Comments
Chet Hunt
Sunday, 06/10/2012 - 02:26PM

Just a note to set the record straight.

The Ranger is the student newspaper at San Antonio College, one of five Alamo Colleges. President Robert Zeigler is president of San Antonio College, not the Alamo College. The newspaper's advisers all have "hands-on newspaper experience," and the newspaper has been in operation since 1926 at San Antonio College.

Confusing? It must be because all references to "Alamo College" should be "San Antonio College." "Alamo Colleges" is the Alamo Community College District's name.

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