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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Ethan Steinberg reflects on 4 years at the Daily, his future in journalism

Ethan-scaled
Ethan Steinberg is pictured at Tufts on Feb. 22.

Editor’s note: The Daily’s editorial department acknowledges that this article is premised on a conflict of interest. This article is a special feature for Daily Week that does not represent the Daily’s standard journalistic practices.

When Ethan Steinberg joined the Daily in fall 2019, he was a copy editor and a staff writer for features. Now, as he prepares to graduate this spring, he will have served as managing editor, associate editor, executive copy editor, news editor, investigative editor and written articles for almost every major section.

Today Steinberg is known at the Daily as a master of his craft, with a keen eye for detail and sensitive reading on campus climate. Chloe Courtney Bohl, former editor in chief of the Daily, praised Steinberg’s journalism.

“I always recognize Ethan’s work when I read it because he has such a clear, distinctive and attention-grabbing voice,” she said. “He’s such an excellent writer in addition to being an excellent journalist … [and] one of the people that I look up to the most in the Daily.”

During his time writing for news, Steinberg wrote extensively on local and university COVID-19 policy, finding compelling stories to illustrate issues clearly for readers. 

“If you dive deep enough into [a story], there’s always something interesting, something that other people don’t know,” Steinberg said. “Everything’s a story, right? So you just have to frame it as a story, obviously, within the bounds of truth.”

Alex Viveros (LA’22), former editor in chief of the Daily, praised his friend and former colleague.

“Ethan is so talented,” Viveros said. “He’s so fearless and yet such a good person; I’m honestly so impressed by the way he communicates with people and gets information.”

Courtney Bohl said Steinberg’s reporting “helped me to understand that factual journalistic writing doesn’t have to be boring.” 

“He had served two semesters on the managing board, he had nothing to prove to anyone, but he would attend these Somerville Board of Health meetings and report on rapidly evolving, chaotic COVID policy,” Courtney Bohl said. “Having a chance to read and edit his work that semester taught me so much about journalistic writing.” 

After spending two semesters working on the managing board, Steinberg began writing for the news and investigative sections. Within the Daily, he is known for his distinct prose and journalistic skill.

“I’m honestly so impressed by the way he communicates with people and gets information,” Viveros said. “There’s a stereotypical view of journalists poking around … but [for] Ethan, there’s so much thoughtfulness when he reports.”

After serving as managing editor in spring 2021 and associate editor in fall 2021, Steinberg joined the news section in spring 2022. Courtney Bohl, who was executive news editor of the Daily at the time, said Steinberg “set a super high standard for the entire News section.”

“[Ethan is] one of the people that I look up to the most in the Daily … in terms of the standards that he sets for writing, reporting and editing as well,” Courtney Bohl said.

While he may be recognized at Tufts for his stories on Black Lives Matter protests, teaching assistants’ pay disparities and campus bomb threats, Steinberg has written at Forbes and currently interns at Morning Brew, where he contributes to the personal finance newsletter. He plans to pursue a career in journalism after he graduates.

“I just know he’s set up for success in the future,” Viveros said. “And I think, really more than anything, his philosophy on journalism is gonna help the industry a lot.”

For Steinberg, the most rewarding part of his time has been seeing the Daily through COVID-19 pandemic and working to make the paper more inclusive. During his junior year, Steinberg served on the Diversity & Inclusion Report Committee, which compiled data on the Daily’s staff and reporting to offer suggestions on how to create a more equitable work environment and source of news.

“When I started, the Intentionality & Inclusivity team was almost defunct,” Steinberg said. “It was rebuilt … during the time that I was here and so to see a kind of flourishing now and producing things like the diversity report and like affinity groups … has been rewarding for me to see.”

Viveros credited Steinberg with having “saved the Daily.”

“Every college paper is going through this crazy transition, figuring out their identity in a non-print, predominantly online world, and I think Ethan is at the forefront of that now and as a leader, he should be so proud,” he said.

Courtney Bohl said that Steinberg’s leadership will be part of his legacy at the Daily.

“[Steinberg] set such an incredible example of what it means to be a leader in the Daily,” she said. “He’s extremely humble and he takes his work extremely seriously.”

Steinberg reflected on the achievements he is proudest of.

“I’m proud of having served on the committee that published the diversity report, because I hope that continues,” he said. “I feel like I learned a lot from the people who I’ve worked with.”