Star Tribune Offers Minnesota High School Graduates Free One-Year Digital Subscriptions

From a story on by Sophie Culpepper headlined “The Star Tribune is offering high school grads across Minnesota free one-year digital subscriptions”:

It’s the season for graduation presents, and this year, the Star Tribune is offering an unusual gift to Minnesota’s entire graduating high school Class of 2023: a free, one-year digital subscription.

The new initiative is the latest experiment of the Star Tribune’s News in Education program. Just before the 2020 presidential election, the Star Tribune expanded that program to offer free digital subscriptions to all Minnesota school districts with the goal of strengthening news literacy through access.

Ken Lawrence, who leads the News in Education program as the Star Tribune’s education audience development manager, said that the graduation offer supports both the Tribune’s journalistic mission and its digital growth goals. “Our primary motivation [with the News in Education program] is to support teachers and schools in teaching social studies, civics, and current events with a credible local news source,” he said.

He said that 287 educational institutions have signed up in the two full school years that free digital subscriptions have been available to them. He said “In addition to aligning with our journalistic mission, this program supports our goal, we hope, of demonstrating the importance of Star Tribune, which will lead to more people making the choice for the Star Tribune — to make it part of their day and part of how they understand and engage with their community.”

Demonstrating the value of reliable reporting to younger people, Lawrence said, is critical to ultimately grow the Star Tribune’s digital subscriptions and expand its readership. “We know that to continue our digital growth trajectory we need to connect with and attract new audiences,” he said. “A big part of that connection is to demonstrate to younger demographics the value of having a trusted news source with credible journalism.” Access, he added, is a key step to establishing that trust and sense of value, especially for younger audiences in an age of rampant misinformation

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