About the Torch

Torch Governing Document

The Torch is the stu­dent news­pa­per at Ferris State University. Its con­tent is deter­mined solely by the stu­dents who com­prise the edi­to­r­ial staff of the news­pa­per. Any stu­dent may apply for a staff posi­tion at the Torch. The only absolute require­ment for employ­ment at the Torch is stu­dent sta­tus. This stu­dent press at Ferris State University shall be free of cen­sor­ship as guar­an­teed by the Constitution of the United States. Student edi­tors and man­agers are free to deter­mine edi­to­r­ial poli­cies and news cov­er­age and con­tent with­out inter­fer­ence from the fac­ulty, staff or admin­is­tra­tion of Ferris State University. The stu­dent news­pa­per shall not be sub­jected to poli­cies that con­sti­tute prior restraint, such as advance approval of copy, or to poli­cies that pro­duce a chill­ing effect on stu­dent press free­dom. Ferris State University rec­og­nizes the value of the free and open dis­cus­sion facil­i­tated by the stu­dent news­pa­per and encour­ages fac­ulty, staff and stu­dents to take an active inter­est in the news­pa­per. The stu­dent news­pa­per at Ferris State University is admin­is­tered through the Department of Languages and Literature. The role of the depart­ment is to serve as a link between the news­pa­per and the uni­ver­sity and to assist the news­pa­per in its efforts to meet the needs of the com­mu­nity it serves. The depart­ment pro­vides the news­pa­per with an adviser and sup­port in the form of infor­ma­tion needed to oper­ate within the poli­cies of Ferris State University. The uni­ver­sity also pro­vides sup­port in other areas, such as com­puter upgrades and tech­no­log­i­cal help, as well as an office spaces in Rankin Center.


The Editor-in-chief is the chief exec­u­tive offi­cer of the Torch. He/she directs all of the paper’s edi­to­r­ial and pro­duc­tion activ­i­ties. The editor-in-chief is respon­si­ble for all major pol­icy deci­sions of the news­pa­per that are not decided else­where and for ensur­ing that the Torch fol­lows all rel­e­vant uni­ver­sity poli­cies. The editor-in-chief should be con­sid­ered the leader of a man­age­ment team respon­si­ble for pub­lish­ing a qual­ity, inde­pen­dent stu­dent news­pa­per respon­sive to the needs of the cam­pus com­mu­nity it serves. The editor-in-chief deter­mines the edi­to­r­ial con­tent of the Torch (any excep­tions will be noted in the Torch Policy Manual). On mat­ters unre­lated to edi­to­r­ial con­tent, the editor-in-chief is under the admin­is­tra­tive super­vi­sion of the Torch fac­ulty adviser and the Department of Languages and Literature.


The Adviser is a fac­ulty mem­ber in the Languages and Literature Department with expe­ri­ence in jour­nal­ism or a related field who helps the Torch staff main­tain pro­fes­sional jour­nal­is­tic stan­dards. The adviser has no decision-making power regard­ing the con­tent of the news­pa­per. He/she should not be involved in deter­min­ing the con­tent of the paper except in an advi­sory capac­ity and as specif­i­cally requested by the Torch staff.


The busi­ness depart­ment pro­vides rev­enue and man­ages income and expenses. The busi­ness man­ager (an adult part-time employee) keeps track of the Torch bud­get, bills cus­tomers, logs expenses, han­dles clas­si­fied adver­tis­ing and helps deter­mine busi­ness pol­icy for the paper. The busi­ness man­ager is also respon­si­ble for assur­ing enough adver­tis­ing is sold, hires and super­vises the staff of adver­tis­ing sales rep­re­sen­ta­tives, han­dles cus­tomer com­plaints, track national and local adver­tis­ing and works with the adver­tis­ing lay­out and design staff to ensure qual­ity ads fill each edition.

Department Head

The Head of the Languages and Literature Department is respon­si­ble for approv­ing Torch requests for pur­chases and hir­ing. The Head is also the final arbiter of com­plaints against the Torch.

Contact Information

401 South Street, SRC102 Big Rapids, MI 49307–2226, USA