Write for us

VARSITY Style Guide, VARSITY Writing Guide

Why write for VARSITY?

Well, why not? Writing for us is a great opportunity to improve your writing skills and familiarise yourself with the internal workings of a real student newspaper. Our News, Opinions, Features, and Sports section editors will give you feedback on every article submitted to ensure that you know how to improve your writing. You can write for a different section every week and we welcome those who wish to submit more than one article each edition.

Can I join if I've never written an article before?

Of course! Article writing is very different to writing essays or reports, but a short chat with one of the members of the collective will set you on the right track in no time. If you love writing, we'll show you the ropes.

If I submit my article, what are the chances it will be published?

Articles are selected by the section editors they are submitted to, and if your article isn't published, you will still get valuable feedback from them to improve your writing. You can also hand in draft articles to get help before the deadline.

When are articles due?

Usually on the Wednesday before the paper comes out, but deadlines are often arranged at the discretion of the section editor. Come to newsgathering (every second Tuesday during meridian) for more info on article topics and deadlines.

Can only Humanities students join VARSITY?

Of course not! Anyone who is a UCT student can be a part of VARSITY. It costs nothing and after a few weeks with us you'll have valuable journalistic or management skills that you won't get anywhere else.

Do I have to apply to be a staff writer?

Definitely not! All you need to do is look on the Editorial page in the newspaper for the time and venue of our next newsgathering. Newsgathering is where the topics for the next edition are handed out, and writers have a chance to chat to the section editors face-to-face. There is no interview process for staff writers, photographers, design assistants, or sub-editors. We are here to develop you - you don't need to come in as a star journalist, but you will certainly leave as one!

What else can I do if I want to be involved?

What many people don't know is that there are many ways to be involved in VARSITY. Be it on our sub-editing, photography, or design team, or of course contributing to the ever-expanding website, we are always looking for people with creative ideas in any field to spice things up.

We also have HR, Advertising, Finance, Marketing, Operations, and IT Managers.

What do the various contributing positions entail?

Writer: A student who submits a publishable article every now and then.
Staff writer: A student who has written for and been published in three consecutive editions of VARSITY.
Sub-editor: A student who assists with the factual and grammar checking of the articles.
Photographer: A student who shoots and contributes publishable photographs to VARSITY.
Design assistant: A student who is reasonably skilled in Adobe InDesign and is able to ssist with the layout of the newspaper.

Do I have to sign up for a full year?

No. To be considered a staff writer, you need to write and be published in three consecutive editions of VARSITY. Obviously long-term commitment is better for both you and us, as skills development is an ongoing process, but we understand that students don't always have time to submit an article for every edition. 

Do you get paid to work for VARSITY?

In a way, yes, but not in Rands. Everyone in VARSITY, including the Editorial team, works completely voluntarily, which means that we attract the most passionate students at UCT.

So, can I come up to the office anytime?

Yes. We're on Level 5.20 of the Steve Biko Students' Union – two floors above the Food Court. There are usually a few of us in the office, although we are students, so don't be surprised if every now and then the office is closed. Just knock, we don't bite. However, avoid the office the week before the newspaper comes out, as we're usually on a tight schedule. You can always email hr@varsitynewspaper.co.za with general queries.


For any further information about how to get involved in VARSITY, email hr@varsitynewspaper.co.za.

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