Last year, instead of heading home after a full day of classes, senior Tiffany Campbell went to the Bellingham offices of The Planet, Western Washington University's nationally recognized environmental magazine. As The Planet's editor, Campbell rounded out 15-hour days editing copy, meeting with writers and laying out nearly 40 pages of stories. For Campbell, who is now interning at a local paper, the long hours were all worthwhile: The Planet, which comes out of the university's Huxley College of the Environment, was the "one place we had a lot of freedom to take on really tough stories, stories we really cared about."


Almost entirely student-run, The Planet uses local and regional stories to address national environmental topics. For each of the three yearly issues, students fan out to report on multiple stories that relate to a central theme. Last fall, student writers tackled the topic of activism by profiling community-based grassroots groups as well as offering first-hand accounts of Seattle's World Trade Organization riots. Last spring, Planet reporters talked to loggers, hikers, backcountry horse riders and residents of an old mill town to get the lowdown on a local land-use issue.


Though The Planet has won national and regional awards from the Associated College Press and the Society of Professional Journalists, faculty advisor Scott Brennan says the greatest achievement of the magazine has been to create "good, solid, brave, investigative journalists."


Read back issues of The Planet at www.planet.wwu.edu, or get on the mailing list for upcoming issues by calling 360/650-3543.