Opinion

Published on October 3rd, 2017 | by Katie Osaki

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Letter from the editor

Dear readers,

In an age filled with a surplus of biased forms of media and upset viewers, the war against journalism is painting red letter A’s across the field. Making it seem that reliable news sources are harder to find. While this negative connotation has redirected audience’s opinions of the mass media, it has become a call to action for journalists across the nation, including our student journalists here at The Samohi.

As editor-in-chief this year, I am thrilled to be a part of such an amazing group of hardworking and driven students that continually strive to provide our readers with accurate, unbiased and professional news that affects our community, and fights against the war on journalism.

Over the summer, our editorial staff dedicated part of their time to help craft a staff manual including a mission statement, a few vision statements and a running list of goals that will be open for addition throughout the year. In doing this, we settled on our mission statement to be something along the lines of the following:

The Samohi serves to provide our community of students, staff, parents and more with an accurate, ethical, unbiased, professional publication that strives to create awareness, seek out the truth from a diversity of sources and tell the whole story for our readers as a learning process that preserves the history of our school.

In addition to our mission statement, we also mapped out a few vision statements that we thought would be good places to start from this year.

1)    The Samohi staff will grow to become well-rounded, independent-minded people that are approachable, respectable and credible sources of information for our school.

2)    The publication will be a relevant forum of ideas for our community of students, staff, parents and more, who will read our paper due to our journalistic integrity and accessibility.

3)    The journalism program will foster a staff community that knows and upholds good journalism standard and creates an environment for its members that is respectful, trusting and open to criticism. The program will also be easily identified by community members outside of the program and financially supported due to its interesting, relevant, truthful, tasteful and credible nature.

Among these vision statements and overarching goals for the school year, we also have a running list of goals that includes increasing website and paper viewership, our social media presence and community outreach and investment.

Through these three fundamental structures, our hope as a publication is to strengthen our connection to the community and produce a paper that is interesting, informative, professional and objective.

While The Samohi is a student-run publication that gets published approximately every month, this whole process does not work without you. With your involvement, whether you are a student, parent, teacher, administrative staff member or community member, our paper cannot be produced.

Whether you’re involved through visiting our website, thesamohi.com, following our Instagram and Twitter pages, subscribing to our paper, purchasing advertisements, contributing photographs or art or pitching story ideas, everything counts toward making our publication stronger.

While we strive to maintain professional standards of journalism, we are still a learning product. Meaning that through the above mediums of community involvement, we are able to learn and adapt cycle to cycle.

As a third year member of The Samohi, I have been able to witness and learn from the many accomplishments and challenges our paper has gone through and hope that this year, we will be able to show you, as well as our current staff that this year will be a stepping stone for future editor-in-chiefs to look back on and say that this was a year that they were able to witness and learn from the many accomplishments and challenges we have faced, thus making our paper a continual learning process that grows stronger at the turn of every year.

As we move into the 2017-2018 school year, my own personal goal for our staff members is to take something away from their experience here at The Samohi, whether that be that they love journalistic writing or that journalism isn’t really their thing, my hope is that they will all learn something about themselves from the experience much like I did my first year.

That being said, I am very excited to see how all of our members thrive in their future endeavors, and look forward to a wonderful year, surrounded by the hardworking and driven students that are The Samohi.

Thank you,

Katie Osaki

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