It was that time of the night again.
“Are you sure you’re sure?”
During this past year as editor-in-chief of The Temple News, I had this night, quite frankly, every Monday night since August 2018. And it was almost always at a time when the birds started chirping into Tuesday morning, and I sure didn’t have any brain power left. And I’m sure I asked the question about 10 more times until the person responded with a resounding “YES!”
But I had to be sure.
I’d ask this question of my news team almost every week. If it wasn’t that, I was surely asking my design editor and managing editor if our front cover was ethical, responsible and eye-catching. I used to get defensive while I was news editor my junior year when the editor-in-chief would question me. Now I got it — and I couldn’t help but challenge everyone to be sure.
It was in these moments, when I could feel the irritation from sleeplessness in the room, I would be overwhelmed with a feeling of thankfulness followed by an ever-present feeling of self-doubt. I would feel so thankful we had this space to challenge one another to tell the best, most accurate stories we could for our community. I’d feel the weight of how much power we were given to tell them.
This is a time in our world where journalism is under attack, from Main Campus to the White House. And there’s arguably nothing more important than being sure.
This year, we changed a lot about The Temple News. We changed our style — we’re a tabloid now, we have crosswords, we have an engagement team and we have daily online content to boot. We made so many strides to tell stories we’d never been able to tell through Intersection. This is illustrated in our #MeToo issue, our collaboration with women’s magazine REFINE for National Eating Disorders Awareness Week and this week’s dedication to those who helped first-generation students graduate.
This year was, as always, an eventful time at Temple University. Each of my four years here, I’ve worked to cover the latest administration debacle, like the ouster of former president Neil Theobald, former trustee and comedian Bill Cosby’s two sexual assault trials, or most recently, the Fox School of Business’ rankings scandal. Plus, our sports team covered not one, but two football coaching searches this year after former coach Geoff Collins went home to Georgia Tech, then the University of Miami’s Manny Diaz left to do the same.
We covered so, so much more across sections and angles. I’m so lucky to work with such a hardworking, talented staff. I’ll miss hearing the features desk and opinion and intersection editors calling up their reporters to get more details. I’ll miss the news team’s never-ending jokes about Temple officials. I’ll miss our new digital office crew typing along to their “Fuck You” playlist. I’ll miss the cross-office yells of excitement when a Philly team is performing well in a Monday night game.
I for sure wouldn’t trade this crazy year of learning, leading and questioning.