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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Newspapers from around the nation and region will soon make their debut at Texas A&M.
USA Today, in a joint effort with the A&M Student Government Association, is bringing the USA Today Collegiate Readership Program to A&M as a pilot test program Feb. 9 through March 2, to see how many Aggies regularly read a regional or national newspaper and if students would be interested in a new free paper distribution system.
According to the USA Today Web site, The Collegiate Readership Program began in 1997 at Pennslyvania State University.
The program will allow students to pick up national, regional and local newspapers from stands and vendors around campus, said Chris Diem, SGA vice president for student affairs and a junior political science major.
“These papers will be given out for free for six weeks,” Diem said.
“Students will also be asked to fill out a short survey.”
Newspapers that will be available include USA Today, The New York Times, The Houston Chronicle, The Bryan-College Station Eagle and The Dallas Morning News, Diem said.
For the trial run, seven vendors will be set up throughout campus.If students respond well to the pilot program, the papers will be available permanently for free, Diem said.
“USA Today Collegiate is a program that exists through many college campuses including some of our Big 12 counterparts,” said Matt Josefy, a senior accounting major and student body president.
Josefy said USA Today approached A&M because it ran a similar program in the residence halls a few years ago.
“SGA chose to pursue this because we think it’s a service that could benefit students,” Josefy said.
The objective of this pilot program is to provide students the opportunity to access papers more easily and become more informed, Diem said.”This would be a good resource for students here,” he said.
Josefy said the program will give students the opportunity to see what is going on in other parts of the nation.
“This gives students an opportunity to pick up a newspaper they wouldn’t normally have access to and increase their knowledge of issues,” Josefy said.
Ryan Adams, a sophomore kinesiology major, said he reads national newspapers because it gives him a better understanding of what’s going on outside of Bryan-College Station.
“I think this free program is a good idea,” Adams said. “Money is probably something that holds people back from reading the paper.”
The 270 schools that did this trial run now have permanently instituted it, Diem said.
According to the USA Today Web site, many Texas universities are involved in this program, including Rice University, Texas Christian University, Texas Tech University and The University of North Texas.
If students at A&M like this program and it is picked up, SGA will figure out how to find funding for the program, Josefy said.

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