Each Tuesday of the past year, I walked past the bright, red The Daily Aztec newsstands on campus and thought to myself — ‘a new issue will be on stands tomorrow, but not before a day’s work of journalism ends.’
And each Wednesday, my eyes gleamed when I watched a student, professor or parent pick up the latest issue of the newspaper filled with campus stories as reported on by the talented journalists that embody The Daily Aztec staff.
Thank you to the readers of the stories published in the news section this year. Each protest, investigation and profile story was reported on by one of your peers– a San Diego State student.
As I prepare to leave the university, I urge anyone who does not feel their story is represented in the newspaper to reach out and tell it. I encourage anyone who wants to expand the voices of students to take part in The Daily Aztec — through reporting, reading or sharing the content that highlights students in its news coverage. It is a collective, independent student newspaper which not only welcomes, but highlights the voices of students.
Continue to support student journalism because it is essential to holding the university accountable, and sharing the voices that otherwise might not be heard.
To the future The Daily Aztec editors — it is the responsibility of budding journalists to recognize the first amendment, including the freedom of the press, is essential to a democratic society. The role of the journalist to act as the fourth estate is especially prevalent, and student reporters must work together to ensure it. With this is mind, do not back down in gaining access to public information from the university. Do not let anyone tell you that you are ‘just’ a student journalist– you are each held up to the highest standard of fairness and truth. Stick with your gut and report the hard-hitting stories. Everyone has a story to tell — give them the chance to tell it.
To the Associated Students executive board — representation of the student body includes relaying information to student media. Students have the right to the information A.S. possesses — acting as gatekeepers impinges on this right. The Daily Aztec faced many obstacles to access for information from this year’s executive board, and it has not gone unnoticed.
To The Daily Aztec staff — I would not be the journalist I am today without the many lessons I learned in the dusty, basement newsroom during the last two years. I am a better reporter, fact-checker and story-teller in part because of the collaboration I made with the news team and editorial board in my two years as part of the newspaper. The growth I have experienced has led me to exponential opportunities, friendships and confidence in each of the editors and writers I worked to tell stories and gain access to information with this year.
And to the many people who shared their stories with me — continue to use your voices.
As I end my term as news editor, I want to remind readers that student journalism was the basis of the content produced by the newspaper, as it has been for over a century.
Support the freedom of the press by investing in student reporters and campus newsrooms — you can start right here with The Daily Aztec.