October 25, 2020

The Journal seeks to represent, not fight community

Student journalists don’t have an easy profession. We work hard to bring interesting, relevant information to readers while continuing to grow as students and individuals.
The Journal aims to serve one purpose—the voice of the Webster University community. However those voices have been stifled by administrators by harbouring resentment for our occasionally unpopular work.
By dismissing our ability to diligently bring you the news, you are making good news even harder to get.
Administrators and professors seem to believe student reporters are somehow less important, or less powerful, than the fancy “real-world” reporters. This is an upsetting and illogical frame of mind that could prove to be dangerous to Webster.
As the de-facto publication at Webster, and the primary source of regular news for students, The Journal is uniquely placed to affect the campus in drastic ways.
The Journal reports on the inner working at Webster in a capacity rivaled by no other publication. Our purpose, as the student publication here, is to continue this tradition.
As recently as last spring, The Journal was bringing information to light regarding the termination of Nicholas DiMarco, a former Webster professor in the George Herbert Walker School of Business and Technology. DiMarco’s misuse of lab fees — the reason for his termination — was unknown to the majority of the campus population until The Journal broke the story.
Many of our students aspire to become professional, full-time journalists and photojournalists after graduation. Whether journalists are welcomed by administrators as the necessary function of the fourth estate, or treated like social pariah, they won’t be going away.
The trend among members of faculty and staff to stonewall or mistreat the staff of The Journal won’t deter our passion, it will ignite it.
We do not seek easy answers, quick fixes or simple solutions. We want to be challenged and to write the kind of stories that might affect the university itself.
The best thing you can do to a journalist is underestimate them. Taking a reporter lightly is a good way to find your name in bold letters above a story of which you are the focus. Journalists who have been written off or ignored often do the best work, operating under the radar of their subjects’ concern.
“But they are simple student reporters, of no consequence.” We imagine this must be the logic behind the repeated attempts to dismiss our reporters.
Forgetting the condescension behind such statements, The Journal remembers the countless campus presidents, board members and students who have been victim to good reporting of determined students in the past.
It is a proud tradition for campus media, and one we plan to continue.

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