“ISIS is bad, so what?”
The question was posed to me this summer, and it caught me off guard. Yes, I stated the obvious in my essay, but I didn’t say something untrue. So why such a simple, odd critique? Did my summertime boss expect me to come up with a policy plan?
That essay and my summer fellowship taught me many things, but that lesson might have been the most important. It is one thing to state the obvious in a paper or article, but writing about huge, consequential issues such as Middle East policy — as I was asked to do last summer — requires deeper, more perceptive thinking and writing. My boss had a point.
When the school year began, I posed the same question to my staff: “ISIS is bad, so what?” It is easy to write an article summarizing a school event, but it is another to see beyond the obvious and connect the story to the reader.
The University News requires a dedicated, passionate staff, but without readers, our jobs do not mean as much. Our readers are the most important part of the paper. Without you, there would be no writing because we would have no one to write for.
Coming into the school year, the goal was to meet you, the reader, where you were and push you outside of your comfort zone. Who could forget the great commentary pieces by Dr. Greg Roper, associate professor of English, and Father Thomas Esposito, affiliate assistant professor of theology, about the role of the Bubble in our community?
The Bubble is necessary. Without it, we would not have the unique character that we do, but we cannot limit ourselves to it. The world is so much bigger than our university. The events hosted and ideas discussed on campus matter so much more than they may initially seem.
Our editors and writers sought to connect with you, to make you think about the little things and to relate those little things to the big things.
Could we rightly call ourselves a paper if we did not ask you to grow? The University News will always report the facts, even if they stir up controversy or thought provoking conversation; it is our job, our goal, our mission.
To our readers, thank you for taking the time to appreciate your fellow classmates’ work. Seeing you walking down the Mall, paper in hand, or sitting at a table in Braniff, reading the paper, or picking up a copy of the paper was a moment of pure joy. You have no idea how much heart is put into the paper week in and week out.
To our professors, thank you for your perspective, for the tips and for always challenging us to be better.
To my staff, thank you, for your tireless hard work and dedication. You made this the most rewarding job, and for that, I cannot thank you enough.
There is no doubt in my mind that the 2016-2017 staff will surpass the accomplishments we have set this year. I, for one, am already looking forward to reading the articles online, coffee in hand, conversing with my fellow University of Dallas alumni and students.
My hope is that we met you where you were, that we wrote about more than the obvious and that we made you pause and think.
It has been an honor and a privilege.