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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, April 20, 2024

A message from our assistant arts editors

In honor of Daily Week, get to know the newest members of the Arts section’s editing staff.

daily week - 2

From left to right, Ethan Essner, Annika Pillai and Jennifer May are pictured.

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.

To celebrate the Daily this week, the Arts section’s new assistant editors describe their experience with the Daily and what it has meant to them.

Ethan Essner: Coming to Tufts, I found that the Daily was the first place that let me cultivate my critical voice and hone in on the journalistic topics that give me joy. I do feel as if there was some intimidation over whether I’d ever reach a stride with writing, but the Daily was so helpful in getting me acclimated to the pace of a college editorial. To me, this publication is a community of curious individuals looking to formulate their own opinions and styles, and no one ever judges. That’s the beauty of the ‘Dailmunity.’ There’s never a point in which you don’t feel like a meaningful cog in a large, collaborative machine.

I spent much of my first semester at the Daily meeting new people and learning about the ins and outs of journalism. Gauging those new understandings during that first semester was crucial to laying the groundwork for the impact the Daily has had on my college experience. I look back on last semester and going to the press screening of “Killers of the Flower Moon” as one of the most special opportunities. Having the ability to step into a theater with other art critics and converse with them regarding their opinions and critical inspirations was so impactful. I give so much love and appreciation to the wonderful room to grow as a writer the Daily has given me.

Annika Pillai: I had very little previous experience with journalism or anything news-related prior to coming to Tufts, so I kind of joined the Daily on a whim. My high school’s newspaper was small and not that extensive, and I couldn’t really write about anything I was genuinely interested in. Because of that, I was worried that it would be similar to coming to Tufts. Luckily, it wasn’t! I was very excited when I got the opportunity to write for Arts & Pop Culture and write my own column about things that I actually cared about. It was the first time I had fun writing. The main reason why I joined the Daily was because of how open it was to anyone to join –– it didn’t matter that I had little to no experience with journalism. The Daily is a space where anyone who loves writing can learn and grow. Joining the Daily is probably one of my favorite things that I have done since coming to Tufts –– I love being around people who genuinely care about the section and fostering an inclusive community. I’m so grateful because the Daily gave me a place to start –– the opportunities are endless from here. Though I have only written a few articles this year, I look forward to continuing writing for the Daily!

Jennifer May: When I first came to Tufts, I knew I wanted to write for a publication and practice journalistic writing. I was an Arts section writer and editor for my high school’s newspaper and really enjoyed covering events in the art world, and the Daily seemed like a really good place to continue doing this. DailyCon was especially exciting for me because I got to see how expansive the Daily is here and learn about all the opportunities for involvement, including the possibility to write for multiple sections and try out different topics. Since joining the Arts section in the fall, I’ve written TV and film reviews, and for the first time, a theater review. Learning how to balance objectivity and articulating my opinions on works of art has been really important in my experience writing for the Daily. One of the most rewarding experiences I’ve had in the newspaper was interviewing the owner and staff of Spindler Confections. I’ve gotten the chance to practice my interview skills and made new connections in the process. The Daily has been such a welcoming and important part of my experience here at Tufts and I am looking forward to continuing writing and being an arts editor this semester!