EDITORIAL: Student voices will persist

By The Beacon | February 26, 2021 9:08am
by Brennan Crowder / The Beacon

The last year has been tumultuous and we’ve all had to weather intense challenges that no one expected. Keeping up with the news to stay informed has never been more important. While you may look to big national or international publications for coverage of the latest political drama or to stay updated on the pandemic, don’t forget about your local community.  

The Beacon is UP’s own student-run news publication, and for this year’s Student Press Freedom Day, a day dedicated to highlighting the incredibly important work that student journalists do, we want to remind our fellow students that our voices have power. As paying customers of this institution, we should be asking questions and facilitating healthy discussions in order to create an active and engaged community. 

Despite remote work and power outages, here at The Beacon we’ve continued to pursue the truth to bring you crucial information about topics that are important to the UP community. Our reporters and media team have adapted to these new circumstances and have persisted in investigating what’s happening on The Bluff, asking questions and working to bring you facts and different perspectives so you can have a better understanding of our environment despite the distance from campus.

We've tracked UP closely as it rides the waves of change. This year we recorded the monumental departure announcements for Men’s Head Basketball Coach Terry Porter, Title IX Coordinator and Vice President of Human Resources Sandy Chung and President Fr. Mark Poorman

We documented how campus has been impacted by COVID-19 and what policies have been implemented to keep the community safe. We also shared how students can access financial aid during these difficult times. Our news page is home to the latest updates about COVID-19 cases at UP.

But The Beacon is more than breaking news. We’re also a platform for community building. In this online environment we are now residing in, hyperlocal journalism plays an integral role in bringing us together. In the living section, read about what life is like for students living on The Bluff, check out what virtual events or clubs you can attend from home and peruse some book and podcast recommendations. There are still lots of ways to stay connected with the heart of UP.

And don’t forget the opinions section, a place for students and community members to rant, reflect, inform and start conversations. We’ve published reflections about the pandemic, open letters from staff and faculty to the administration and the administration’s response, and commentary on the future of UP in regards to the institution’s values, tuition rates and diversity and inclusion initiatives. Starting these conversations among students, between students and the administration, and even between UP and the greater Portland community is a necessary part of growth and development. 

But we don’t want to have just a one way conversation — we want to have a discussion. What questions do you have? What story ideas do you have? What opinions would you like to share?

As you can see, The Beacon serves many important roles within the UP microcosm. We’re here to amplify the voices of our community, like those fighting for diversity and inclusion, representation, accountability, transparency, or action on climate change. We’re here to bring awareness about injustices faced on this campus and to hold those in power accountable. 

And we will continue to do so, persisting through whatever challenges the future brings.

Have something to say about this? We’re dedicated to publishing a wide variety of viewpoints, and we’d like to hear from you. Voice your opinion in The Beacon.