Letter from the editor: The Bigger Picture

Michael Pearce, Editor-In-Chief

I’m incredibly grateful to be writing this letter right now.

This campus has been an important place in my life since 2017, when a (much skinnier) me stepped into college with some idea where I was going — but, at the same time, no clue where I was going.

Luckily, I had the first step down. I moved into my Oak View Hall room with my best friend since eighth grade, Brendan Triola, and I set out to join the campus newspaper.

Meek little me took his time joining the paper, but once I did, I knew I was going to work here until I graduated. I’m full of excitement and joy because I get to be this newspaper’s editor-in-chief (EIC).

I just want to thank my dad, casually known as Big Mike, for instilling in me the values and work ethic that I needed to achieve anything I’ve ever wanted. I’d be nowhere without his constant love and support.

Enough about me — let’s talk about the people who really matter.

This campus has shown me nothing but opportunity since I arrived, and I intend to pay it back with quality, honest and fair journalism. There will be no shortage of news this academic year — there’s a pandemic and an election to worry about — and I intend on doing my best to make sure that students, faculty and families are updated constantly.

Oakland University is a very special place, with no shortage of special, gifted people. I have gained so much from being here, and I know countless others who have as well. However, it is not without its flaws. As big of a Golden Grizzlies fanboy as I am, I know there are always going to be negative aspects.

That’s where fairness comes in — the most important thing this newspaper can do is be the voice of the student body. The university is nothing without them, and they need representation now more than ever.

COVID-19 has been merciless in The United States. This country has been hit incredibly hard by the virus, and OU is not immune. There will be complications, there will be unpopular decisions and because of that — there will be news.

There will be news about the ever-evolving tension revolving around race and police violence as well — Oakland has a vast community of people who look different than I do, and I intend to cover them with care and honesty.

This staff is made up of a lot of hard-working, kind, caring people who care about their work, journalism and this campus. I have the utmost faith in them to deliver the content people need. I’m incredibly happy not only to be EIC, but to also have such a talented managing editor, Emily Morris, who easily could have had this job instead of me. She won’t get all of the credit, but she does just as much work as I do.

As the EIC, any mistakes this staff makes fall on my shoulders. So, that’s where you come in. Tell me if I’m dropping the ball. Be nice though, I’m fragile.

My personal email is on the inside cover of the newspaper. We will make mistakes. We won’t be perfect, no one is. Feel free to correct us. Let me know if there’s a group or campus community that isn’t being represented enough. As a journalist I strive for balance, so feel free to blow up my inbox — it’s already is a disaster.

Above all else, I want this newspaper to be something that makes a difference on this campus. A strong campus newspaper can improve a campus dramatically. Many campus newspapers across the country make big waves in times of crisis and affect change that is felt for years to come.

If we, as a team, can make even a ripple of change in the vast campus community, I’ll consider my time as EIC a success.

My greatest wish from this job has nothing to do with where it might take me or how it might look on a resume. When I walk (or drive) up to the stage to receive my diploma, I want to feel like I made a difference. I want the student body to think I’ve done a good job representing them through our work at the newspaper.