Since its first years, Whitworth has produced a number of publications for its alumni and supporters. The Whitworth College Bulletin boasted growing numbers of students and faculty in the early 1900s, along with general college news; later, the Alumni Review highlighted alumni achievements and upcoming events as a supplement to the Bulletin; in 1960, the Bulletin and Alumni Review joined forces and became Campanile Call, which was published “in an effort to reflect the quality and character of the college and to continue to improve sound and proper relations with its alumni.” These communiques were published four to six times per year, and anyone was welcome to subscribe.
Whitworth College Today was first published in 1972 as a trifold newsletter; by 1978 it had expanded to a 10-page magazine. In 1980, the format changed to a tabloid-style newspaper. Its inaugural issue in the new format featured the headline “Today greets 80s with big, new look.” Linda Sharman was the director of publications during that era and helped lead Today to greater readership and national acclaim. In 1983, the Council for Advancement and Support of Education honored the publication with awards for exceptional achievement in tabloid publishing and writing, as well as a merit award citing improvement over the previous decade.
Whitworth Today magazine, led by Sharman and Associate Editor John Carter, debuted in the spring of 1989, in tandem with Whitworth’s centennial celebration. The biannual publication’s elements have remained largely unchanged, with each issue featuring a cover story, plus two shorter features; Whitworth-related news; alumni updates (the “Alumni Bulletin Board” is now known as “Class Notes”); a message from the president, and commentary from a Whitworth professor or alumnus. The magazine’s current editor, Terry Rayburn Mitchell, ’93, is Today’s longest-tenured editor; she assumed her duties in 1999.
Along with the approximately 22,000 copies mailed to alumni and parents, Whitworth Today is, like most university publications, available online. While many alumni immediately turn to “Class Notes” to check in on their acquaintances, at its heart Whitworth Today serves as a reminder that Whitworth, too, is moving forward, and shows how the institution’s mind-and-heart education is continually fostered in the classroom and lived out through its alumni. To those who love and support Whitworth, Whitworth Today is an important reflection of Whitworth’s mission at work.