Student paper plans revamp
THE University of Hong Kong's student union paper, Undergrad, will remodel itself in an attempt to get closer to the student population.
The 40-year-old publication, renowned for its alternative voice, has decided to change its stance after taking into account student criticism.
Undergrad enjoys a large degree of autonomy and is generally free from interference from the university's central administration, with the editor-in-chief and two deputies elected by students.
Set up to document university life, it has evolved into a periodical with a sharp focus on social justice, education, and community and cultural affairs.
Henry Chan Wing-hang, convenor of this year's editorial board, said the board would change direction to better meet the needs of students. Undergrad also would change aesthetically, opting for fewer words.
'We will try to use pictures and illustrations, instead of [too many] words, to convey messages,' Mr Chan said.
The Undergrad editorial board expects to double the number of issues published each year - making it a monthly - to allow it to keep pace with current events. 'Students then may not feel we are talking about outdated events,' Mr Chan said.
He said there had always been some conflict between messages conveyed by the editorial board and what students on campus were interested in.
'There is always the dilemma between doing the things we believe to be right and getting close to our readers,' he said.
'I do not think there should be any students' publication that does not talk about social justice.' One second-year engineering student said he rarely looked at the publication. 'I am not interested in most of the topics it covers . . . I think it is too distant from most of the students.' But Karen Hui Yu-ling, a final-year social sciences student, said Undergrad had value. 'They talk about alternatives and encourage rethinking of some conventional concepts,' she said.