(WARRENSBURG, Mo.) –When I started working at the Muleskinner two years ago, I had no idea the impact it would have on my life. Working with such driven, intelligent individuals has pushed me to be a better and more confident person, writer and journalist.
I owe so much of who I am to this place. I joke that the Muleskinner is my home, but it’s true. I have spent more consecutive hours here at my desk than I have in my apartment. My coworkers have become family to me. Words can’t describe my adoration for them.
It hasn’t all been fun and games. I’ve seen the Muleskinner go from a weekly print paper to a bi-weekly print paper to a weekly online paper to a bi-weekly online paper. I’ve seen us lose our funding and jobs, only to get them back months later. I’ve seen and felt the push from print to digital. I’ve seen and felt the budget cuts imposed by Missouri Gov. Greitens.
One thing I have not seen or felt while working at the Muleskinner is censorship. Fortunately, we work with an excellent faculty advisor, assistant professor of digital journalism Matt Bird-Meyer, who helps us retain our code of ethics without censoring our voices. With Bird-Meyer as the advisor again next year, I know that freedom of speech will continue.
So let me tell you what I hope the newsroom will look like with you in it.
As the lifestyle editor, I have had the pleasure of covering the smallest, most mundane events on campus to the big features pieces, like when President Ambrose broke his pelvis. I’ve covered Pokémon Go, 48-hour film festivals and so many diverse Faces of UCM. I have over 50 recordings on my iPhone with hours of interviews – I still wish I could’ve done more.
I want to see a wider variety of stories covered. I want more in-depth pieces. I want the Muleskinner to host open forums with the public. I want the Muleskinner to continue to be a soundboard for student expression and news. I want people to read our work, whether its online or in print form next year and every year after that.
I want readers to know that as a newspaper, we at the Muleskinner hope to inform, educate and help the community. The U.S. needs newspaper readership now more than ever, especially in a day and age where “fake news” is turning people away from real reporters who strive to make a difference.
I want you to be a part of this newsroom. Today, tomorrow and forever.