This is the top position at The Bell Ringer. It is a position of high responsibility and multiple duties. The person who fills this position is the face of The Bell Ringer, the person who deals with all facets of producing a newspaper, including working with the public. The editor-in-chief runs the newspaper, making day-to-day decisions on his or her own and making major decisions and decisions of policy and style in consultation with the faculty adviser.
Responsibilities include the following:
Maintain The Bell Ringer's annual student activities budget allotment and work with the director of student activities on matters affecting the newspaper or staff
Maintain a working staff
Organize and conduct weekly staff meetings
Set the direction of the newspaper
Maintain a high journalism standard for The Bell Ringer
Act as the newspaper's final proofreader
Serve as the newspaper's primary contact with the printer
Assist the production manager with page placement and design
Arbitrate disputes between staff members
Maintain equipment and stock of office supplies
Set and keep at least three office hours a week, and ensure that paid staff are maintaining at least three office hours a week
Maintain a safe and clean office environment
Maintain a filing system with five to 10 hard copies of each issue
Participate in practicum as directed by the faculty adviser
Coordinate attendance at annual conventions and the newspaper's participation in journalism contests
Meet weekly with the faculty adviser on matters relating to the newspaper
Assist faculty adviser on matters of hiring and firing personnel
Editor (Copy Editor)
The copy editor edits all stories submitted for publication, checking for facts errors, style errors and gaps in stories. Responsibilities include ensuring that photos assigned have cutlines or cutline information that is accurate for each photo, enforcing deadlines with section editors, and maintaining relationships with other editors and staff writers. As second in charge, helps direct the workings of The Bell Ringer. Should work one-on-one with writers and section editors on matters of style and substance on a regular basis. Makes recommendations for placement of stories to production manager. Assists in generating story ideas. Maintains a filing system for stories that have been proofed by section editors. Must attend and participate in staff meetings as set by the editor-in-chief. Must set and maintain a minimum of three office hours a week. Responsible for keeping The Bell Ringer online stylebook up to date and for tracking stories that could be submitted to the annual Georgia College Press Association conference.
Section Editors (News, Features, Sports)
All section editors are responsible for providing a sufficient number of stories per issue to fill the section assigned. The stories should be written by staff writers and editors. Avoid use of wire copy and non-staff copy. Manage and assist staff writers with their stories, working with them to ensure quality copy and suggesting how they should cover stories. Generate story ideas for sections. Do a first edit on all copy going to the copy editor and provide suggested headlines for each story. Enforce deadlines with writers. Meet deadlines of sections. Assign photographs for stories and make sure cutlines are appropriate to the pictures. Attend weekly staff meetings set by the editor-in-chief. Set and maintain a minimum of three office hours a week. Assist in other areas of the newspaper as needed or directed by the editor-in-chief.
This paid position falls to an experienced staff writer who is dedicated to The Bell Ringer and to the objective of good journalism. He or she is the lead reporter on staff. Responsibilities include writing a minimum of three stories per issue, producing story ideas, suggesting photographs to accompany stories, consistently meeting deadline, developing a beat and appropriate sources on that beat, working with section editors and the copy editor to ensure that all copy is professional and complete, following AP style and The Bell Ringer style, setting and maintaining at least three office hours a week, attending and participating in weekly staff meetings, and helping staff writers develop as good reporters. Chief reporters should also assist the newspaper as directed by the editor-in-chief.
Staff reporters write stories as assigned or approved by editors. Stories are usually assigned, but writers should try to generate story ideas and discuss them with the appropriate section editor. They also must inform editors of photographic needs for their stories, ensuring a complete package gets published. If no photographer is at hand, they should shoot their own photos. And, of course, they must meet deadline, meet deadline, meet deadline. Other expectations include seeking out the assistance of section editors and the copy editor to improve copy, following AP style and The Bell Ringer style when composing stories and making sure stories are grammatically correct before turning them over to section editors. All stories should strive for multiple sources and quotation. Telephone interviews are fine, but try to conduct interviews in person. E-mail interviews are prohibited. Staff writers should make every effort to attend staff meetings, whenever possible.
The production manager is the chief designer of The Bell Ringer. He or she lays out every issue of the newspaper and directs and supervises the production assistant in that effort. Responsibilities include producing advertisements and promotions as directed by the editor-in-chief or the advertising manager, maintaining a filing system for photos, ensuring that photos have adequate and correct cutlines, maintaining a list of photography equipment, keeping an updated filing system for each issue and meeting deadline for sending the paper to the printer. Should attend staff meetings.
The production assistant assists in the layout of each issue of The Bell Ringer. He or she is responsible for assisting the production manager, creating advertisements and promotions as needed, maintaining a filing system of work produced for each issue and providing assistance in filing hard copies of each issue. Should attend staff meetings.
The circulation manager is responsible for circulating the newspaper. As such, he or she must ensure that newspaper racks are stocked with the current issue of The Bell Ringer. The newspapers must be delivered to all locations on the first day that the papers arrive from the printer. Every few days, the circulation manager must check and restock racks as needed. Old issues of The Bell Ringer must be taken out of the racks when the current issue is delivered. Additionally, the circulation manager is responsible for making sure that all stands are in good condition and that other publications or material placed in the racks are removed. He or she must take copies of the paper to the library archives. Reports directly to the editor-in-chief.