What’s it like being an editor during COVID?

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When we first got hired to be executive editors, we had no idea that our plans to create a fantastical newsroom would be obliterated by the COVID-19 pandemic. At the time, it really did seem like we would get COVID under control by quarantining for two weeks. We were all so hopeful, and the idea that we would spend our senior year being editors from our homes didn’t start creeping into our minds until summer approached and we were still wearing masks and social distancing.

We’ve endured a lot of hardship, all of us. The motive behind every editorial this year was fueled by the urge to tell people that they really weren’t alone in this pandemic. We were going to get through this together. In retrospect, it was also a way to remind ourselves that we, too, weren’t alone. Being editors during the pandemic has, at times, been very isolating.

We couldn’t physically pass out papers in the fall, and we completely had to give up print in the spring. Our editorials tended to be uplifting and hopeful but still realistic. What most didn’t see though, was the countless times we felt overwhelmed or stressed out for a myriad of reasons, many of which were out of our control.

There was always something that had to be fixed, or an emergency that happened last minute, resulting in us having to resolve it in an alternate way. We had staff members quit because they felt that they had enough on their plate with going to school during a pandemic. Our Zoom meetings weren’t free of technical difficulties and sometimes our computers would crash from being overwhelmed.

This year has been amazingly difficult. But as we said in a September editorial when we were still new editors, “it is our responsibility to diligently report the news and make that news accessible to everyone, no matter how far away they are from Trinity’s campus.”

One of the most rewarding aspects of our jobs is that we get to connect with the community. From Student Spotlights to arts coverage on Zoom theatre, you, the reader, have made our jobs infinitely better simply by supporting us, whether it be through reading our stories, submitting a guest piece, or interacting with our stories by sharing or commenting on them.

Seriously, thank you.

As vaccines are rolling out (you should get vaccinated if you haven’t), and things gradually return to “normal,” we know that next year’s editors will endure some of the difficulties that we did, but we are confident that they will continue to serve you, the community. They were hired for that reason, just as we were.

We’re graduating, but the incoming editors aren’t. And most likely, many of you will continue to live, work and study on campus. After being editors in a pandemic, we’ve experienced first-hand the hardship of maintaining a publication at a time when it seems everything is falling apart.

No matter where you are or what your association with Trinity is, please continue to support student-journalism. Please continue to interact, share, and provide feedback on how the Trinitonian could be better. And finally, please remember that whatever comes your way in the next academic year, we’ve already endured, together. We survived this academic year together.

From the bottom of our hearts, we send our deepest thanks to everyone and anyone who has supported us during this unbelievable year.