As of yesterday, I completed 10 years at WKU as director of WKU Student Publications. Ten years — a decade! Never been in one job this long — and it seems like I just started yesterday.
I’m truly blessed in that I love what I do and, importantly, I love where I get to do it. The reality is, I always have. I loved my life as a reporter and editor in newsrooms across the country, and I love even more advising the next generations of aspiring journalists and watching them grow from the first day they step on campus through graduation and into successful careers.
Much has changed over the past decade in college journalism — and in many ways we’ve led the way here at WKU:
- Transitioning Talisman from the nation’s best yearbook into a great life and culture magazine combined with an exceptional and eclectic website.
- Launching Cherry Creative, a branded-content studio that does special sections, events and helps our clients reach the WKU community — and makes money to support the overall operation.
- Evolving the College Heights Herald in rapid form from a twice-weekly newspaper with a website into a digital powerhouse that sends email newsletters to more than 30,000 subscribers every weekday during the fall and spring semesters, has a vibrant 24/7 website and, starting this fall, publishes a newsmagazine loaded with exclusive enterprise content.
- Establishing Student Publications Advertising as its own entity selling across all our brands and products.
Along the way, we’ve fought for what’s right — in particular, the public’s right to know. And our students have collected a bunch of honors for their work, continuing and building upon the stellar legacy of student-run media at WKU.
I’m proud of our students and our professional staff here at WKU. They’ve persevered and pushed forward, creating and embracing change as the world has been reshaped around us. I’m thankful to be part of that exceptional team.
And I am most eager for what is ahead. Journalism, like it or not, is being reshaped. I believe the students who get experience here on the Hill will be at the forefront of finding the path forward, one that embraces the essential role journalists must play in a free society and fearlessly covers our communities, this nation and the world with a reverence for facts and truth.
These two photos? The neat and tidy office I took over July 1, 2012, and the chaotic mess it is today!