Photo courtesy of Zeke Estes

On my first day of class in fall 2016, I picked up a copy of The VanCougar. That was the start of a routine, and every two weeks I’d pick up a new copy on my way in the library to study. I really appreciated the ability to stay informed about campus events, projects, and policies. Last spring when I heard the managing editor position was open, I instantly recognized the role I could play here at The VanCougar. Since I began last May, I’ve worked with Editor in Chief Rachel Wilson to revamp The VanCougar’s presence on campus, and I firmly believe that this will be the best year The VanCougar will have had to date.

I’m a 21-year-old senior on track to graduate in May. After graduation, I’m attending law school on my path to becoming a lawyer. I’m taking the Law School Admissions test on September 16th, and after that, I’ll have a better idea of the schools to which I want to apply. Don’t ask me what type of lawyer I’m going to be—I don’t know. I find most areas of legal field interesting including business law, civil procedure, and constitutional law.

My interest in the law began in high school when I competed in speech in debate. I became somewhat attracted to the speech part of it, but what really excited me was the ability to practice logic, reasoning, and critical thinking. I enjoy structuring arguments and using deductive reasoning to determine truth or the validity of a position. It may be somewhat idealistic, but the legal system’s focus on logic and reasoning is what has led me down my educational and career path.

It’s also what excites me about journalism. I transferred here from Clark College, and while there I worked for four quarters at the school newspaper. I quickly realized that in many ways, true journalism practices a similar search for the truth. As journalists, we’re tasked with accurately reporting what goes on in the world. Sometimes it’s not easy to determine what is happening and that is when we have to put in the time and effort to find the information readers need. As a student news publication, we have a limited number of topics on which we report, but I still wish to promote that same integrity and search for truth within our organization.

Part of the way The VanCougar intends to do that this year is by informing students of campus policies and projects. In this issue, you’ll read stories on everything from a new technology fee to how legislative decisions at a state level are affecting campus. It is my hope that you come to rely on us as a reliable and accurate source for information that affects you as a student.

As a school without any on-campus housing, I feel that some students struggle to stay informed about campus policies and many are not connected to the campus community. Associated Students of Washington State University Vancouver President Jose Scott and Vice President Naomi Grande campaigned last year on a promise to incorporate student feedback and participation into their administration. That can be difficult if students themselves are unaware of campus policies and projects. My goal is to help bridge that disconnect.

Throughout the year we also plan to incorporate student feedback. Our new magazine-style format is in part a result of feedback from students. In the next week or two, our website thevancougar.com will also receive a makeover.

If you have information on a potential story, if you want to correct a mistake in an issue, or if you just want to know more about what we do, don’t hesitate to send me an email at van.vancougme@wsu.edu. I’m always happy when people on campus interact with us.

I’ll see you around campus!

Steven Cooper

Managing Editor

2017 – 2018

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