Guest Commentary

May 1, 2000

New Current editor in chief has big shoes to fill, much stroke to earn

Josh Renaud
Guest commentator

If you're a regular reader of The Current, you're probably thinking to yourself, what is this guy doing here? I want to see the Under Current! Well, to paraphrase our editor in chief Joe Harris, sorry everyone, sorry.

So, now that you're here, I hope you'll stick around long enough for me to introduce myself and talk to you for a bit. My name is Josh Renaud. I am the production manager and web editor for The Current, which basically means I am responsible for every aspect of how The Current looks from week to week.

Next year I will be taking the reigns of The Current from Joe Harris. Joe is leaving some big shoes to fill, and in some ways that is a little intimidating. Let me tell you about the year we've had under Joe's leadership.

This year, we totally redesigned the newspaper in print and on the web. We wanted the paper's look to reflect progress and motion, because this is a newspaper that is active and growing and always on top of the news. In addition, The Current was able to run full-color issues far more than we have in the past, and we also ran our first entirely-digital issue this year. Digital production means this year's pages look sharper and cleaner than what we've had in years past.

But Joe accomplished much more than that. The Current had excellent coverage of some of this year's biggest controversies. Joe increased the size of the staff by adding an Arts & Entertainment department and committing to having an entire page dedicated to A&E. He also hired the paper's first web assistant, creating a true web department for the first time.

Our staff was more diverse this year in terms of ethnicity, race, and ideology. And Joe also began a training program to help Current staffers get more out of their time as part of the paper.

So how can I follow up such a fantastic year? Well, I think I have the answer. In 2000-2001, The Current is going to continue to push forward in all the areas we have been making progress in: better news coverage, feature stories that will interest and benefit students, a vibrant website that students will want to use everyday, and a newspaper that is attractive to look at and read. We will strive to improve every department and function of the paper.

Most importantly, though, The Current is going to reach out to you, the reader. Many students don't read The Current or realize that UM-St. Louis has one of the best student papers in the state. Next year, that will change. We are going to have a large presence on campus because we want to meet you, the reader. We want to serve you better, talk to you more, and find out what it is you want from your newspaper.

Maybe you're reading this and thinking you might like to be a part of all this. If that's the case, then by all means, please give us a call at 516-5174. The Current offers so many opportunities. I have been changed by my time here so far, and I can only imagine how I will grow as a result of the challenges of next year. I know the experience could do the same for you.

So, whether you are a beloved reader or a part of the staff, I want to say thanks for this past year. It's been incredible. Now let's get ready for next year and work our tails off to make the paper better than it's ever been before. We've got all the stroke.

This article was reprinted with permission from The Current.


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