New Staff Considers Challenging Year Ahead

As we approach the fall semester, we’re feeling cautiously optimistic. It’s been up and down since leaving campus in March. Questions in group chats that recurred: Would we be able to come back in the fall? Would we be able to move into our dorms and apartments? Will classes be all online, like at some other schools? What about sports? For a while, we didn’t know many answers. 

But now, we’re back, and embracing the new rules: wearing our face coverings, keeping our distance and watching out for each other. When we reunite with friends from school, we fist bump instead of hug. We find ourselves having to take a moment to recognize familiar faces covered in masks. We’re excited about the way the administration has worked collectively to make a cohesive plan for fighting this virus on our campus. The administration has taken to social media to explain new protocols and answer questions. 

We have more answers now. And yet, there are also added elements of uncertainty. There are some decisions the administration announced that were not quite as universally accepted by the student body, at least in our opinion. This summer faculty layoffs affected our business manager, Mary Dota, who won’t be returning to our office this semester either. Hardship affected many colleagues, classmates and friends who decided not to return to campus this fall. Despite layoffs and budget cuts across multiple departments, there’s also a newly installed, re-turfed football field. A field which will not be used as much as in previous years, if it’s even used at all. 

Here at the Jambar, we’re so excited to be publishing and producing content again. It’s going to be an interesting year. Most of our staff is new, yet eager to learn. New restrictions impact the way we gather news, put together our paper and film our news show. We thank the previous editorial team, the now-infamous 2020 graduates, for all their mentorship and friendship during these strange times. We welcome our new bright and talented staff with open arms. 

The wise outlook from our advisor, Mary Beth Earnheardt, clings to our minds. She said despite how different every-day routines have become, this period of time is great for reporting news. We’re dedicating ourselves to bringing the Youngstown State University community the news it needs to know, in regards to the coronavirus, athletics, student affairs and more. Here’s to the rest of 2020.