University of Pittsburgh
August 29, 1999


Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH, Aug. 30 -- Countering a growing trend at large universities to discontinue yearbooks, the University of Pittsburgh has developed a plan to revamp its yearbook to better meet the needs of today's generation of students.

As is the case at many colleges, the Pitt yearbook faced funding problems due to declining student interest. Before discontinuing the publication, however, Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg asked a group of representatives from his office, the Student Government Board, the Alumni Association, and the Student Affairs and Public Affairs divisions to investigate alternatives.

"The traditional yearbook has been the source of pleasant reminiscences for countless numbers of our alumni. But the waning interest on the part of our current students convinced us that we needed to examine new ways of capturing those memories for our graduating seniors," Nordenberg said.

The new yearbook will be a joint venture of the Student Government Board, the Alumni Association and Public Affairs. It will be distributed free to all seniors following graduation. The book will be produced by student interns, with direction being provided by staff members in the Public Affairs and Student Affairs areas.

Alumni Association President Cynthia Roth explained some of the proposed changes. "Rather than featuring individual senior pictures and organizations, the yearbook will take more of a year-in-review approach. We believe that it will be something that the recipients will not only want to save but which they will also come to appreciate more as the years go by," Roth said.

Student Government Board President George Mongell praised the cooperative effort to develop the new plan. "This was a good example of the students, alumni and administration working together to meet the needs of the students in creative ways," he said.