A GREAT NEWSPAPER has a critical impact on the community it serves. Your local newspaper gives its readers a voice they otherwise wouldn’t have.

This week is National Newspaper Week. Working in today’s newspaper industry has its share of ups and downs, but the young professionals working in offices all across the country believe in the future of journalism.

It’s important to know that the news media is not the enemy of the people as President Donald Trump has said. The best course for journalists at all levels is to continue putting the truth out, a right protected by the U.S. Constitution.

A danger is the power of social media to funnel people into their own echo chambers which is contributing to divisiveness and civil discourse.

Earlier this year, the magazine “Editor and Publisher” featured 25 men and women younger than the age of 35 and asked for their advice to other young professionals. Here are a few of their comments and observations.

Find a good mentor in the industry. In fact, having three or four good mentors is even better. Absorb as much knowledge as possible. Ask for advice and bounce ideas off of them as often as possible.

It is no longer good enough to accept an answer of “because that’s how we have always done it.” Everything is changing and we will not survive in the future if we keep doing the same things we did 10, 20 or 30 years ago.

Amy Shioji, a vice president with USA Today Network, said young journalists must embrace change and stay curious. In an industry facing disruption, it’s important to stay nimble, be open to change and bring new ideas to the table.

“It’s an exciting time to work in this industry as it requires us to elevate our thinking and move fast,” said Shioji. “It allows us to see the best in our peers and our organization.”

Tim Gallagher, a strategic consultant and former Pulitzer Prize-winning editor in Albuquerque, N.M., said “We cannot allow Facebook to be the place our readers go for local news. Facebook has shown it is unreliable. We must wag the dog and not be the tail of the dog.

“Facebook is not our friend. The past few years, Facebook has misled us. It has changed its mind every few months and the last thing it proposed had nothing to do with Facebook’s next big thing.”

If something isn’t going right at your newspaper, be the change that gets it on the right track. You may not be the management, but fixing the problem is as much a part of your job as anyone else. Keep making suggestions and be a part of the solution.

The industry’s problems are not going to be solved by any one person. Develop a network of friends and chances are you will grow up with them over your career. By helping them and investing in their success they will want to help you.

“Young people just starting out in the profession need to ask lots of questions and continue learning by watching. Pay attention to any available opportunities to expand your horizons,” suggested Gallagher.

Great opportunities are not always obvious. Young people bring energy and ideas to the future of our business. Newspapers must be flexible, must have versatility and be adaptable.

Don’t be afraid of honest criticism. Get to know your harshest critics internally and externally, have an ongoing dialogue with them and try to turn those critics into your most prominent advocates. You will be better for it.

Young people wanting a career should try to learn all aspects of the newspaper industry including advertising, editorial, production and circulation. Producing an award-winning newspaper that is profitable is a team effort. One department can’t do the job alone.

“In a world of instant information provided through online news sites, ever evolving social media and smartphone apps, we constantly battle for relevance in the realm of print,” wrote Gallagher.

Print might not always be the first to break a story, but print almost always is more in depth and gives its readers a more comprehensive story. Reporters are storytellers and they must develop a style that tells the story in the way that will impact the audience.

Talk about big journalism and new ideas. Always take the extra step. Call one more source, make one more sales call. If an assignment appears to be boring or a dead end, accept that as a challenge to find a unique angle that no one else has seen and knock the story out of the park.

“No industry is perfect and the print media has its challenges going forward, but that also makes it fun. You have the opportunity to influence the future of a great industry and one that is important to our culture and our society.

“Take every opportunity to look beyond the newspaper industry to innovate. Identify the best practices from other sectors that can help your team better understand audiences, new technologies and behavioral shifts.

“What you do to make newspapers better today might be the main thing that keeps them vital to the community today, five years from now and 10 years down the road. It’s all part of a proud history that has made America great,” said Gallagher.