Newspaper not to blame for reporting news on the band

We take this job seriously.

Do not dodge our calls; do not walk by us on The Set. Pick us up and arm yourself with information.

It’s our job at The Famuan to give it to you, three times a week in print and online.

I do not know if you know this, but we are kind of a big deal.

Friday, being the nosy journalist I am, I overheard two students complaining about the story The Famuan broke about the Marching 100 stealing from a hotel in Detroit after the season-opening football game.

One girl said we didn’t have to “put FAMU out like that.” Her friend agreed, saying the paper made an issue out of nothing.

They said that because the hotel was not pressing charges, there really was no news. Both agreed The Famuan was just making FAMU look bad again.

Those critics must not understand the role of the newspaper.

We here at The Famuan are historians. It is our job to provide an accurate record of contemporary history.

We inform and educate the students, alumni and the Tallahassee community. We cover this campus. Literally.

We did not report the story badly, we just reported a bad story.

This means that we did not commit the crime; we simply told you in an objective and unbiased fashion it happened.

Moreover, we broke the story first. If the Capital Outlook or Tallahassee Democrat told you FAMU news before The Famuan, we would be letting the public down.

You all would think we were not doing our job.

The Marching 100 serves as a recruitment tool for our university.

They travel in a way others are not able to do because of budget constraints. The fact that these ambassadors took that important opportunity and resorted to thievery is a poor reflection of our school. That is news.

The implications of the band’s behavior has impact, a news value we consider when deciding what to print.

The band faces suspension for the rest of the season. Would you want to go to an Atlanta Classic with no music? Excuse the exaggeration – there may be music, but it might not come from the 100.

And the fact that the hotel is not pressing charges simply means they showed grace – something that does not happen so often these days. That is newsworthy as well.

Last weekend, the Famuan held its annual Boot Camp. This is an activity where successful journalists and FAMU alumni facilitated informational workshops for students interested in working for the media on campus.

Graduates of the School of Journalism & Graphic Communication reminded us of The Famuan’s rich legacy.

They were proud to tell us how the stories they wrote for Journey magazine and The Famuan helped them secure the jobs they have now.

These alumni are the reason we are here today.

The foundation they laid cemented our role on this campus and established the reputation we strive to uphold.

More importantly, we are black journalists just like Frederick Douglass, Ida Wells-Barnett, John H. Johnson, Oprah Winfrey and others. We are the descendants of greatness.

Keep this in mind as you continue to keep The Famuan first.

This is no easy enterprise. We are being trained to take our industry by storm.

And we take this job seriously.

Driadonna Roland is a junior public relations student from Detroit. She can be reached at