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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Sunday, May 19, 2024

The Daily has been the highlight of my time at Tufts — it can be yours, too

The Daily offers a multitude of opportunities, experiences and friendships; it has been one of the most rewarding parts of my Tufts career.

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The Tufts Daily newsroom is pictured on April 6.

When I applied to Tufts, the Daily was not even remotely on my radar. In my application essays, I indicated interest in a few different clubs and organizations. I thought: Maybe I’ll join an a capella, musical theater or Indian dance group, all of which I’d done in high school.

In the fall of 2020, I arrived on campus and immediately isolated in my new home. I went to a few ballroom meetings on Zoom and sent in a video audition to our notoriously selective a capella clubs. By the end of the semester, I’d found no good way to connect with the greater Tufts community beyond the people who lived in my hall that I attended Zoom classes and ate dining hall takeout with.

Over break, overcome with emotion at a news report about climate change, I wrote an article and sent it to my aunt, who suggested I send it to my school newspaper. That was my first introduction to the Daily. I joined the Opinion section and have been there ever since, serving as the executive opinion editor in fall of 2022.

Joining the Daily was one of the best decisions I made at Tufts. The Daily presents an incredible opportunity for anyone interested in journalism or writing — especially because Tufts does not offer a journalism major. At DailyCon, our semesterly training, illustrious Daily alumni and Boston-area journalists share their hard-earned knowledge, giving students an idea of what a future in journalism can look like. This semester, Craig LeMoult (LA ‘01), Tufts alumnus and WGBH reporter, shared his experience covering the Sandy Hook shooting, highlighting the sensitivity required to cover such an emotional and deeply tragic event.

The Daily is one of the largest organizations on campus and offers a multitude of opportunities at various levels of involvement. In fact, every one of my housemates has been involved in the Daily at some point in their Tufts career, even though our majors range from history to economics to biomedical engineering. Sections such as Graphics, Business and Layout are all ways to be involved even if you don’t enjoy writing or editing, while the Video and Audio sections offer options in multimedia storytelling. Our written sections, where my experience lies, are just as varied. Through the News, Features, Arts and Pop Culture, Opinion, Sports, Investigative and Science sections, you can write about whatever interests you most.

I am incredibly proud to be involved in this organization. We are editorially and financially independent from the university. Our strict fact-checking standards, even for opinion articles, mean that while we have been sued before, we’ve never lost in court. The Daily’s commitment to accuracy and airtight sourcing is one of the lessons I will take with me after graduation this May, particularly at a time when social media and artificial intelligence are altering our news landscape. This is only possible through excellent organization and student leadership. Each semester a new set of students — seven on the Managing Board and one to two heading each section — take the reins, following our carefully designed protocols and making adjustments to constantly improve the paper.

The Opinion section has been my place since I joined my freshman spring. By this article, my 38th, my writing and editing skills have improved immensely from when I started. I have learned so much from so many incredible writers and editors, both ones who’ve long since graduated, and ones who joined the section only recently. Leading the Opinion section my junior fall was certainly not easy, but it was one of the most valuable experiences of my Tufts career. I’ve deeply enjoyed the editing process where I’ve been able to suggest changes to strengthen opinion arguments, even ones I don’t agree with. Vetting and editing op-eds and communicating with people from the broader Tufts community who submitted them has been a unique and rewarding experience. Getting the chance to introduce new writers to the Daily, guiding and watching them grow as writers and editors and serving under two of them as their second-in-command this year has been one of the greatest joys of my time here.

Most importantly, the Daily is a community of people working toward a worthy goal:  publishing the best paper that we can. We are also a community of college students; in the Daily, many of us have found our closest friends. While I have long been resistant to the clunky portmanteau “Dailmunity,” it really does represent the ties that bind us together as members of this extraordinary publication, no matter where in the sprawling production process you lie. From our written sections, to Copy and Layout, to our multimedia sections, to the Business section that finances our operation, we are all connected by the paper you hold in your hands. If you are an admitted student reading this, I hope you enjoyed your first copy of the Tufts Daily, and we’d love to see your name in print this fall!