Welcome from the editorial staff

Bethany Boyle is a senior communication major from St. Louis, Mo.

On behalf of the Index Editorial Staff and our Truman Media Network colleagues, welcome.

As we begin this yearly journey together, many of you for the first time, I want to take a moment and introduce you to the people behind student media.

We are your fellow students and Kirksville residents. We are the girl sitting next to you in the dining hall wearing a purple Index hoodie. We are the young man on the neighboring treadmill at the Student Recreation Center with the TMN bro-tank. We are the photographers at each football game and the videographers capturing footage in the Student Union Building. More often than not, we are the weary travelers you see on the road to Barnett Hall.

I encourage you to say hello when you see us. Don’t be afraid to ask about the story we are covering, why it is important or even why we do what we do.

I think there is a misconception in our society that the media is an otherworldly entity with an agenda far removed from the concerns of the public. I recognize the media industry has evolved beyond a comfortable scope of reach and influence. However, I would like to put in perspective who we are as TMN and why we are here in Kirksville, Missouri, and on Truman State’s campus. I think you’ll find in the end, we’re not so different.

First of all, we are here to learn. This student organization was designed and intended to be a training ground for journalists, photographers, columnists, videographers and other media professionals. In Truman’s media center, students learn how to write using the inverted pyramid format, how to use AP Style, how to format pages with InDesign, create graphics, update the TMN website, edit videos and so much more.

I still remember the first time I walked into the media center to interview for a job as a news reporter. The editor at the time told me she thought I had what it takes to be a journalist. That day started me on the path that would lead me to ride my bike across town to report on a fire, wake up at 4 a.m. to call the U.S. Embassy in Spain and venture to the middle of nowhere in search of sustainably produced pizza.

In that same room I began developing and honing the skills that one day will become my livelihood. As I and my fellow editors, reporters, colleagues and staffers continue this process today, I find myself enjoying every fast-paced, challenging minute of it.

And we are committed to doing it right — checking the facts before printing, obtaining the proper permissions for publication and seeking to connect to our readership. In everything we do, our organization aims for excellence, and we expect to be held to that standard.

Second of all, we are here to share. Each of our staff members have a distinct knowledge base they now are able to spread throughout the community, whether it’s through a carefully crafted recipe in Kate’s Kitchen, a witty column on the opinions page, an expertly explained court case in the headlining article or a photo perfectly timed to capture the game-winning reception. Each of TMN’s young men and women have the potential to create and innovate in their chosen medium, giving readers the most relevant and engaging presentation possible.

Most importantly, we are here to serve. Our purpose is to inform. Without readers like you, the words on this page have no meaning. The hours of work that went into these articles, photographs and designs are meaningless. We exist to find truth and report it, so we as a society remain aware of what is happening around us.

As a final word, we hope to see you continue to participate in the journalistic process, whether as a reader, reporter or contributor.