“I hope the interactivity will grow, with more readers sharing story ideas and contributing letters and comments.”
— Duane Stoltzfus
The Record launched a new website today after months of designing and digital troubleshooting.
The new site is the product of a joint effort between Goshen College students and LightBox, a local design firm founded by Goshen College alumni. It replaced the newspaper’s original website, created in 2008, which had become inconsistent and hard to navigate over the years.
“One of the biggest issues with any student-produced product is the brain drain that occurs,” said Jordan Graber Kauffman, one of the founders of LightBox. “The knowledge base disappears as people graduate, which we hope this new website will help address on the back end.”
The project was funded by donations from previous editors and was led by LightBox’s founders, who agreed to take it on last year.
Both Jordan Graber Kauffman and Rafael Barahona are graduates of Goshen College. Their goal was to not only redesign and expand the website, but create a learning opportunity for current students.
Nick Yutzy, who graduated from Goshen College with a communications degree last year, was the first intern brought on board. Along with Graber Kauffman and Barahona, he conducted interviews with faculty, staff, and students to determine their wants and needs for a new website.
Yutzy, who served as co-executive editor for The Record the semester before he graduated, redesigned the newspaper’s nameplate and worked on the design.
Yutzy’s goal was to make the new site “as accessible as possible.”
That meant not only making the archive easier to navigate, but also adding resources like a COVID-19 dashboard and schedules for campus dining establishments like the Leaf Raker, Java Junction and the Westlawn Dining Hall.
Two additional interns, Augusta Nafziger and Jackson Steinmetz, were added to the team for the summer. Over the course of three months, they transferred over 5,000 articles from the old site to the new one.
The website they produced looks “smart and crisp and alert,” said Duane Stoltzfus, professor of communication and advisor for The Record. “It’s a site I want to spend time with.”
While the creation of the new website is largely complete, students will continue to work on digitizing The Record’s entire archive back to 1912, when students took over editorial control of the newspaper.
Stoltzfus still sees a demand for printed issues of The Record, but he also expects more people to engage with The Record online in the coming years.
As readers migrate online, Stoltzfus said, “I hope the interactivity will grow, with more readers sharing story ideas and contributing letters and comments.”