Decades of impact by Loquitur editors


By Brooke Protesto
May 2, 2024

Front page of the Feb. 28, 2007 Loquitur issue. Photo via Loquitur Media.
Front page of the Feb. 28, 2007 Loquitur issue. Photo via Loquitur Media.

Within 65 years, the Loquitur saw many editors come and go, each producing work that gained recognition outside Cabrini. Those who went the extra mile to curate such impactful stories often graduated after winning state or national honors. 

Advocating for Black studies

In 2021, digital communications major and former media managing editor for the Loquitur, Sydnee Reddy wrote “Being Black on a campus that cut Black studies,” an article that foresaw Cabrini’s financial future. Reddy dug deep into Cabrini’s public financial records, questioning why courses in Black studies, religious studies, gender studies, and more were being cut, but former President Donald Taylor received continuous increases in pay. 

Courses were not the only part of the institution being cut; many faculty members lost their jobs as well. 

The initial news of these courses being cut was not even originally shared by the institution; the Philadelphia Inquirer reported it first. Reddy was taken aback. “I honestly was very confused. It kind of made me heated because as a Black student on the campus, even though I wasn’t in the major whatsoever, it basically got rid of an opportunity for black students and also non-Black students to learn about Black culture and just Black studies in general,” Reddy said. 

She added, “Especially at a PWI [Predominantly White Institution], we kind of need those classes so people can expand their minds, learn more, and just understand people who are different from them.” 

Being heard was Reddy’s priority. She and many other students on campus were hurt by the institution’s actions. “I tried to mainly just have it come from the heart,” she said, “A lot of Black students didn’t feel seen. It didn’t feel as though the school really valued them as students here. Even though a lot of students weren’t in the program, it felt as though the school didn’t care about Black culture, or Black history, everything that encompasses that.”

The solid reporting done by Reddy earned her and the Loquitur an award, but that was not her goal. “When I wrote the article I wasn’t honestly expecting to win an award. I was just like ‘Okay, I’m gonna write this because this felt very important to me and I wanted to speak my mind about it because I thought it was crazy, this is insane’ and so I was like okay let me write this article.” 

Today, Reddy is working for a fundraising company that is social justice based.

Elevating fair trade at Cabrini

In 2007, Amanda Finnegan and Meghan Hurley wrote a series of articles surrounding fair trade. Not only did their reporting affect the Loquitur, but it also affected Cabrini’s dining hall. Sodexo changed their coffee and fruits to come from fair trade certified outlets. Hurley wrote the article, “Fair Trade: steps taken, long road ahead.”

Seven-year-old Maina, has just finished a long day where she was forced to work in unacceptable conditions. Photo via Catholic Relief Services/MCT.

Finnegan, was former editor-in-chief of the Loquitur, and current editor of “By The Way,” the Washington Post’s travel destination for news, tips, and city guides. Finnegan said, “Cabrini was one of the first campuses to move towards fair trade goods. It raised awareness to people on campus that the goods we were consuming, that people aren’t always being paid fair wages.”

She added, “You have a choice in the products that you buy, you can pay more to ensure that someone is being paid a fair wage. Cabrini was at the forefront of that.”

Finnegan and Hurley’s reporting on fair trade won the two reporters an award to travel to the Middle East. During their time there, they got to work with Iraqi refugees. Finnegan recalled, “It was a really big deal for us to win it because we were college students that won a professional award. By the time we both took the trip, we were graduated and I was just starting my career in journalism. We got to take this trip with other professional journalists and I think that it felt like a really big deal for us to get noticed.”

That was not the only award the Loquitur won that year. Finnegan said, “The year that I was editor was the year that the school won the Associated Collegiate Press Pacemaker Award, which is the highest award in college journalism, and the first time the Loquitur won it. I really see that as our legacy. We tried to push larger issues, but also have them relate back to the campus.”

Finnegan looked back on her time on the Loquitur. She said, “Working on the Loquitur really shaped my life. It showed me that journalism can be a career and it showed me that it was something I’m good at.”

The Loquitur is home to many more award-winning articles. All of the hard work done by these reporters can be found here.

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Brooke Protesto

Brooke Protesto is a Junior at Cabrini University. She’s a Communications Major with a Leadership Studies Minor. Cabrini was a big part of her childhood, her father is a part of Facilities and Athletics. “Take your kid to work” day was her favorite time of the year! It was only natural for her to enroll at Cabrini. Brooke spends her time playing softball, is a Resident Assistant on campus, DJs for Cavalier Radio, and is a reporter for the Loquitur. For her last year at Cabrini, she plans to make the most of it.

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