Well, I’ve finished a year of being the editor-in-chief of the Drake University newspaper, The Times-Delphic. It’s been a long process, but I’ve loved it. I’ll write a full reflection later this week, but for now, my post will be an editorial I wrote for the end of this semester that never got published, and well, I can’t put it on the publication’s website because it’s down at the moment (I knocked it offline to redo the design/do some maintenance). I wrote this for the last issue of the semester, but as it came to be, we didn’t have enough room (our ads team sold a lot of ads). Anyway, I didn’t want it take up space in our DropBox folder anymore so I decided to just post it here.
Editor reflects back on a year of work
As I write this, I reflect back on my last year as editor of The Times-Delphic. It’s been a difficult year, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.
I took the helm of the publication in January 2012. I was uncertain of what my future at the publication held. That is saying a lot, considering I’ve been on staff at The TD for three years now. For once though, I can say I’ve held a position for more than one semester. It’s been difficult to change positions over time, but now that I’m the “veteran” on the paper, I can see with some clarity the things I’ve come to love about news on a small campus.
I’ve been lucky to see a lot of what happens at this university, and I’ve been even luckier to report on it. I’ve seen change. I’ve seen struggle. I’ve written about it.
When Chad Stephens was a questionable candidate on campus, I wanted to find out more. When a white powder was found at Herriott Hall one morning, my reporting professor politely kicked me out of class so I could get the details. I even rode the DubBus for three hours just to illustrate the service it provided for campus. The past two semesters of being EIC have been rewarding, and testing.
I never thought I’d have to write about a memorial service for a first-year student. I also didn’t expect myself to cry while I was there … or while I was writing the article.
This next semester, my third as EIC, I hope to do something bigger and better with the paper. The staff and I are currently working on overhauling the website to better suit you. I’m working on stories for the first few issues back from J-term. I’m working on reporting more for you, the readers. My intentionality for the next semester will focus on the readers, and the information they need and deserve to know. Only time will tell if that goal is successful.
My year as EIC has been eye opening. I hit a lot of roadblocks, but I got through them, all thanks to the editorial staff of the paper. They are the real troopers. Without them, I would have no paper to run. They’re also the ones who decide to change their Facebook profile photos to one of me being ridiculous in the office. They’re the ones who keep me grounded and keep me motivated to wake up every Sunday at 7 a.m. to be in the office at 8 a.m.
With the semester closing the reflection process begins. I’ll have six weeks to contemplate what needs to change for the readers, and what we can improve on as a staff and as a publication. I hope to rebuild it more so we can focus our reporting for campus (especially with the Relays Edition coming). As a staff, I hope that we can bring you more hard-hitting, pertinent stories for the needs of Drakes campus. I have a lot of publications to look to for guidance, a lot of journalists to guide me in this quest.
Before I sign off for the semester, I’m going to leave you with some words from Walter Cronkite: “Our job is only to hold up the mirror — to tell and show the public what has happened.” This is my hope for the next semester, to show and tell the stories of what is happening at Drake University.