The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR: I’ve been looking forward to this moment

Thank you for sharing your stories with me.
Paths on Alumni Lawn near McGill Hall around sunset, as photographed on Nov. 5, 2020.
Jessica Barker
Paths on Alumni Lawn near McGill Hall around sunset, as photographed on Nov. 5, 2020. (Hustler Staff/Jessica Barker)

Editor’s note: This story contains mention of sexual assault.

Dear Reader,

I’ve been looking forward to this moment for a while. I am looking forward to my final year as an undergraduate here and looking forward to summer, sure. But more than any of that, I’ve been looking forward to thanking you.

For the past year, I have gotten the chance to work alongside an incredible and talented team of writers, photographers, digital directors and social media coordinators. I have also gotten to review a myriad of well-composed, sharp work from some of the brightest writers I have ever had the pleasure of reading. To everyone who I have had the honor of working alongside this year, thank you.

For the past three years, I’ve had the privilege of hearing so many of your stories from every corner of campus. Thanks to survivors sharing their stories, there are more conversations about safety and justice for violence on campus. Thanks to staff and faculty members’ contributions, we know more about opaque administrative processes. Without community members like you, The Hustler has been able to break important news and celebrate incredible accomplishments. To everyone who has ever shared their story with us or helped us tell important ones, thank you.

I have been incredibly fortunate to have a network of supportive friends and family members that have helped me get through my anything-but-normal college experience. This has been undoubtedly the most difficult year of my life, both personally and as an editor. To all of these people, including those I have lost along the way, thank you.

Most importantly, thank you, reader, for being here. Thank you for reading our stories. Thank you for reposting our social media posts, for commenting on our articles and for pushing us to do better. Thank you for criticizing us when we did not get it right and for praising us when we did. We have not gotten everything perfect, and The Hustler still has much to strive for. However, without you, we could not have become the award-winning news organization that we are today. I am excited to see what next year’s Editorial Board has to offer, and I hope you continue to push them to make this newspaper the best that it could possibly be.

Even though my time as Editor-in-Chief of The Hustler is coming to a close, my time as a reader will never end. I hope you also continue to read our stories. Beyond that, I hope you listen to other people’s stories when they share them. If I have learned nothing else at this institution, I have learned this: Listening to other people’s stories is a catalyst for growth and change.

Share your story, and listen to others as they share theirs; though it seems impossible, I have seen how much power stories have. Never forget your power.

Anchor Down,

image of Jessica Barker's signature

 

 

 

 

Jessica M. Barker

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About the Contributor
Jessica Barker, Former Editor-in-Chief
Jessica M. Barker ('23) is a student in the College of Arts & Science. In her free time, she likes to garden and bake. She can be reached at [email protected].    
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The Vanderbilt Hustler welcomes and encourages readers to engage with content and express opinions through the comment sections on our website and social media platforms. The Hustler reserves the right to remove comments that contain vulgarity, hate speech, personal attacks or that appear to be spam, commercial promotion or impersonation. The comment sections are moderated by our Editor-in-Chief, Rachael Perrotta, and our Social Media Director, Chloe Postlewaite. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected].
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