Hello gentle readers! A brand-new academic year is in full swing here at Seattle Central, which I hope is treating all of you well thus far. To those of you just beginning your journey here at Central, I bid you a warm welcome. To those of you returning, welcome back.
For us here at The Collegian, the new academic year means brand new staff writers and editorial board members, myself included, and so I wanted to take a moment to introduce myself to you and share with you a little bit about who we are, what we’re doing and what you can look forward to from us over the next year.
To start with, my name is Astro, I am the new Editor-in Chief of The Collegian, and I am quite honored and excited to be here! Those who came before me have certainly left a solid legacy in their wake, and although these are big shoes to fill, I am up to the task and ready to rock. To that end, I have come into this role with a strong vision for the paper, and some exciting plans on our to-do list. Here are just a few of the things that I would like to share with you…
First and foremost, it is of the greatest import that we understand that we work for YOU, the reader. We have a responsibility to you, and we must and shall deliver. Therefore, we have high expectations of ourselves at all times. We strive to do all things with integrity. With this in mind, we follow the same Code of Ethics set down and adhered to by the Society of Professional Journalists. We are here to seek the truth and report it, and to do so with respect, accountability, legitimacy, openhandedness, honor, professionalism and fairness. We are not in the pocket of any special interest groups or advertisers, and we shun the click-bait tactics used by some other journalistic organizations, because we like to sleep well at night. We’re college students, and we’re tired enough as it is. So yeah, integrity is our bond. Bet on it.
One of the core values I hold – and intend to bring to my vision for The Collegian – is that every voice deserves to be heard, including those who have not been afforded this opportunity previously. I believe in holding space for everyone, even if I disagree with their views. I also believe in being the firestarter of intelligent banter and respectful dialogue. When we openly exchange ideas, opinions, viewpoints and experiences with each other, we can learn a great deal.
I would like to encourage each of you to think for yourselves and to speak your truth, but to also be mindful of giving others the same space. Let’s honor, hear, appreciate and respect each other. I dislike using the word diversity, because the fact that it needs to be said in the first place is a sad reminder that true acceptance for all is still not fully realized and achieved, so instead, I like to say inclusivity. Everyone is welcome here at The Collegian, all voices, and all stories. This is at the core of my vision for us. Because we’re all beautiful, valid, important and worthy.
Since the Collegian started up last year, we have made some great strides as a journalistic organization, but we can always do more. The wonderful thing about vision is that it continues to expand and evolve. We have some exciting plans and additions headed your way, like Letters to the Editor (because I want to hear from you, and respond!), new departments being added, fresh faces writing feverishly for you, new perspectives presented and improved and expanded content and media. Our Web Manager has also been working tirelessly to improve our technology resources and social media presence. In short, we’re getting a facelift. Are we smiling? I can’t tell…
Our editorial board and staff writers this year are extremely talented and bursting with ideas, and we have some very exciting pieces in the works for your reading pleasure. I am stoked for you to get to know all of them by way of their work. We are working diligently behind the scenes to fine-tune our efforts for you, so stay tuned for more things to be unveiled!
One of the things I keep hearing from people, which breaks my heart, is that they didn’t even know that Central has a newspaper! I am making it my mission to change that – because here we are, and we’re not going anywhere. Besides, you should read more. And don’t leave your friends out of the loop, let them know we’re here too! We’ll do our best to make it worth your while…
On behalf of all of us here at The Collegian, thank you for your readership, and we appreciate your loyalty and support! We are all super excited about the journey ahead, and we hope that you will continue to ride with us as we endeavor to bring you “news central to you”.
Editor-in-Chief of The Collegian
Astro (they/them) is the Editor-in-Chief of the Seattle Collegian, the President of Seattle Central's Queer Cooperative club, a fully-professed Guard with the Sisters of the Mother House of Washington, a social worker and behavioral scientist, founder of Transgender Day of Remembrance at Seattle Central (TDoR), Board Member-At-Large with Diversity Alliance of Puget Sound (DAPS), and a self-identified Queer-Alien-Person-Of-Color. They have won awards for their journalism and community service work as well as for innovation in leadership and academic excellence, and are an active and outspoken advocate and activist for both the LGBTQ+ and recovery communities. They speak regularly at events relevant to these causes, and work closely with their fellows to support these communities. Social justice, diversity, equity and inclusion are their banners, and their belief in the gifts, strengths, and resilience of all minoritized communities is the driving motivation behind their work and their mission: using the powers of journalism, self-expression, creativity, conversation and connection to uplift and foster acceptance for all peoples.