Newspapers Should Inform and Challenge

The Student Life would like to welcome all our new and returning readers back to campus for another semester of quality 5C journalism. With each issue, we aim to deliver informative, interesting, challenging, and well-reported coverage of news, arts, sports, and opinions at the 5Cs.

This semester, we are pursuing three major initiatives as we strive to improve the quality of the publication we deliver to you each week.

First, we hope to build off our progress last semester in expanding our use of the internet and of new forms of media to share content. We invite you to visit us online at tsl.pomona.edu, where you will find articles from the weekly issue along with web-exclusive content and, we hope, the early stages of our expansion into audio and video reporting. We are also expanding our presence in online social networks, and we invite you to follow us on Twitter at @TSLnews and on Facebook at facebook.com/thestudentlife.

Second, we set out this semester to actively pursue more coverage of 5C news and events. We have been a Pomona-based newspaper since our first publication in 1889, and we remain that way today; however, with a distribution network that spans the 5Cs and an editorial staff that includes several non-Pomona students, we are confident that this semester will bring a more equitable distribution of news, events, and stories from across the 5Cs.

This begets our third and perhaps most important initiative this semester. Over the years, The Student Life has strived to be an accurate, welcoming voice for the entire Pomona and 5C student body, reaching across social and collegiate boundaries to foster important, productive dialogue between students of all walks of life.

Part of this involves reaching out directly to new members of the 5C community, as we did in this week’s issue with our coverage of Pomona’s new Associate Dean Chris Waugh, the new Director of Pomona’s Career Development Office Mary Raymond, and, at least for us at TSL, our new sex columnist Calamitous Jayne!

It also means covering the stories and trends that make you as students tick, whether it’s navigating through the always-exciting first-year experience, watching a star running back and football captain lead his team, or joining a growing group of students who choose to go barefoot around campus.

But it’s also about making our pages accessible to underrepresented communities on campus or to those individuals who feel their voices are unwelcome in a paper like ours. We want to hear your stories, your struggles, and your opinions, and we want to share those stories with the broader 5C community to create dialogue.

And while we attempt to provide a space for this dialogue every week in our opinions section, fostering dialogue is about more than just voicing one’s opinion. It’s also about listening to others’, even when they make you uncomfortable. As an opinion column in this week's issue points out, can we assume that our colleges actually make us think if we’re unwilling to discuss intellectual or uncomfortable issues with our peers outside of class?

It is an attempt to answer this question that led us to publish a front-page story this week about the controversy surrounding Pomona’s RA-Sponsor training this year. While we understand the uncomfortable nature of the topic and the deeply personal feelings that go with it, we could not allow such an important and necessary discussion to be swept under the carpet. Whatever you take from the article, and from our entire issue, for that matter, we hope you will share it with a friend or neighbor and create dialogue. That’s what we strive to do above all.

We hope you enjoy our first issue, and we look forward to providing you with quality 5C journalism this semester.

For letters or inquiries, please e-mail editor@tsl.pomona.edu or stop by our office in the Walker Fishbowl on Pomona’s campus.