As my term as Editor-in-Chief of The Villanovan comes to a close, I wanted to take a moment to express my gratitude to the students, faculty, staff and greater community. Thank you all for your continued support, understanding and unconditional love in which we, as a University, are rooted.
The concept of “Community First” is nothing new to the staff at The Villanovan. It is our mission to inform the community, shedding light on events that go unnoticed and bringing unheard student voices to the surface. For over 100 years, we have strived to put our community before ourselves for the benefit of our peers and teachers.
When we were sent home in March and suddenly had more free time on our hands than we would have liked, I kept myself occupied by thinking about how I could keep this newspaper alive. The Villanovan was a weekly print paper with a growing social media following, but nothing to write home about. There had to be a way that The Villanovan could do better.
I worked closely with our Digital Editor, Ariana Megerian, to fully rebrand The Villanovan. I wanted to create a social presence that students were interested in and one that provided accurate, timely and interesting information that students and faculty alike wanted to follow. Together, we revamped The Villanovan. We brought our social media to life. We created an entirely new social image that brought The Villanovan into the year 2020.
The summer was never considered a time for The Villanovan’s Editorial Staff to be on-the-job. The only project the newspaper was ever responsible for during the summer months was the Orientation Magazine.
This summer, as an Editorial Staff, we saw no option except to continue producing content on social media and online. Our world was changed by a global pandemic. America was changing with protests and movements that were once again shining light on the history of racial injustice at the hands of police brutality. News seemed to change everyday about what to expect out of a fall semester. We had to keep each other informed during a time when nothing seemed stable. The Villanovan sought to provide some sense of normalcy in regular information catered to our community.
I felt so lucky to return for the fall semester and continue my work at The Villanovan. Yes, I would have been able to do the same thing from home, but being on campus made me feel like what I was doing day-to-day and week-to-week was that much more important and necessary.
I knew that being back on campus would also mean that there would be many more things that we would need to cover in our weekly editions. Not only did we have a presidential election, we had continued social unrest throughout America, a raging pandemic and every aspect of campus life altered by a virus and new guidelines that came with it.
I have lost sleep. I have forgotten to eat. I have stared at my screen for hours on end for longer than one should. I neglected my own mental and physical health. I did all this to make sure my community had the best, most accurate, most interesting and most up-to-date source of news possible in a time when things seem to change hour by hour.
The staff at The Villanovan this semester has inspired me to not only take pride in my work but to take pride in the fact that we are playing a vital role on campus. Our Editorial Staff has taken on more responsibility in years past. Our writers have continued to push boundaries and cover new topics. Our photographers have made sure that we are able to document any and all student activity on campus. Our copy desk team has ensured that our published work is of the utmost quality. Our advisors, not to be forgotten, have also worked tirelessly by our side, guiding us and answering any question at any time of the day.
This has been a big year for the world, but it has also been a big year for The Villanovan. We secured an important position as a premier source of news at Villanova. Our readership has doubled, our digital footprint has increased and our support from peers, professors and administrators has been appreciated and noticed.
I could not be more proud of this publication, but I also cannot thank this community enough for supporting us this year. The Villanovan could not have had a year like this without you, Villanova.