A year ago, the men and women whose names appear to your left became the 124th Managing Board of the Yale Daily News. We began our journey with both enthusiasm and anticipation, prepared for a year of news that we knew would be tumultuous and far-reaching. Labor strife was brewing, a biological attack threatened the nation, and the University was a week from its biggest milestone in a century.
Thousands of hours, hundreds of pizzas, and dozens of dean’s excuses later, we can surely say we were right. The past year’s news has indeed included its share of tumult, and the impact of the year’s events has been as broad as we expected.
And yet, in a way, we got it wrong. It wasn’t anthrax or labor strikes that dominated our pages — though the latter may be coming soon — but rather a collection of stories that leapt out from nowhere to define our year.
From the upstart minister who took on Yale’s administrative elite to the men’s basketball team that rode a hot streak deep into the postseason, this year showed the Yale community all that was possible.
We’re proud to say that we played a part. We learned, as journalists invariably do, that we cannot predict the news. And that’s precisely what made our job so much fun.
Yale is a dynamic institution. Its stories are driven not by editors and reporters, but the the ceaseless beat of life at the University. Our challenge was to capture that beat in print, five days a week, as this paper has done for 123 years before us.
We took pride in breaking news. We were first to the story when Strobe Talbott bolted the globalization center to lead the Brookings Institute, and a month later we exclusively reported that Yale had tapped former Mexican President Ernesto Zedillo to replace him.
Yet we were not satisfied merely to react to campus events. Over the summer, we unleashed a national story by discovering Princeton’s hacking into a Yale admissions Web site. And our in-depth investigations into mental health and homosexuality at Yale exposed areas that have been far too long overlooked.
Our coverage also expanded beyond Yale’s walls. We reported on city politics and economic development, and our Friday scene section led all publications in covering the arts.
We took pride in presenting our stories well, for we knew our readers’ standards were high. Our photographers mastered digital cameras to improve image quality, our layout staff experimented with fresh designs, and our copy editors made the News the cleanest and most accurate it has been in decades.
On this page, especially in this space, we spoke frankly with our readership, and we always welcomed a critical response.
A year after we began our journey, the stories keep going, Yale’s beat carries on. The Yale Daily News has always stood as the first draft of University’s history. Now, we take our place as a part of that history.
This weekend, we will hand over the News to a new cadre of editors, the 125th Managing Board. We wish the next editors luck. We hope that they will treasure this paper and this experience as much as we have.