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Garrett McKenzie

In this article, written by Garrett McKenzie ‘24, readers learn about the history of the Perkiomen school newspaper, the Perkiomenite. They can also learn how to join the club and get started with reporting on world and school news!

The Perkiomenite, or simply "the newspaper" as some call it, has been a part of student life at Perkiomen since 1892, seventeen years after the school first opened. In recent times though, participation in this program has dwindled and all but disappeared. A possible reason for this could be due to all of the other extracurricular programs that Perkiomen offers. However, it was not always like this.

"The Perkiomenite was a serious part of campus life for many years," says Ms. Diana Weir-Smith, Alumni Director. According to her, the student newspaper staff reported fairly frequently, and on topics inside and outside of the campus boundaries. They covered athletics, student government, special events, and other facets of student life. Ms. Carol Dougherty, Associate Head of School, said she particularly remembers the coverage of the election in the 1960’s, saying that it was “really impressive.” Because the articles covered such a wide variety of topics, the newspaper provided a lens for students to get to better know their immediate Perkiomen community and whatever important events were happening in the world.

"International students can especially benefit from the Perkiomenite, as knowledge of American events and politics varies in each country; being aware of systemic changes and social progression is very helpful for those who hope to remain in America for college," says Perkiomenite senior editor Ben Vanelli. Ben has been involved with the revival of the newspaper since his freshman year, watching its leadership and involvement change throughout high school. "It's pretty cool to be in a leadership position for it now, especially since its existence hasn't been known for four years."

Understanding the importance of this program, and watching how interest has declined, current advisors Ms. Jessica Maley and Mr. Justin Sell hope to revive the Perkiomenite's position as a campus staple, and again provide important and interesting information to members of the community. If a student is interested in joining this program, they may sign up for it as an L-Period club for any term. No prior experience is needed, just an interest in the world of reporting and any component that applies!

Ella Laski and Bobby Juarez check out the newspaper archives from the early 1900s. 

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