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Student journalists passionate, dedicated

Feb. 15, 2001

Imagine opening your e-mail inbox only to find a handful of messages criticizing your performance. Imagine overhearing your peers say what a worthless job you've done.

Now imagine encountering those scenarios after getting three hours of sleep, sitting through two classes, completing four hours of homework and, at one point, thinking to yourself that you had done everything humanly possible to the best of your ability.

Perhaps that description bears with it the makings of a drama, but I can safely say that I'm far too familiar with it.

My brief tenure as managing editor of The Lariat has afforded me experiences like none I've had before.

I've been fortunate enough to work with a group of dedicated and hard-working individuals whose passion for their jobs is evident. I've witnessed hours of hard work blossom into a final product that is deposited into campus newsstands the next morning. And though seemingly insignificant to the average person, there's something personally thrilling in witnessing a person reach for The Lariat with curiosity.

But for every good, there's an evil. The production of The Lariat is no simple task and demands every minute of the nearly eight hours spent editing stories, designing pages, writing headlines and proofing once again. And that doesn't even account for the time spent selling advertisements, generating story ideas and copy and taking photos. A great deal of time and energy, not to mention sacrifice, goes into the creation of each issue. And keep in mind that none of us are here just to work at The Lariat. We all have classes to attend and tests to study for.

I share all of this neither to get your pity nor to ask that you adore everything about this publication. I only want to make one point: The next time you think to express your disgust about a front page photo, call the editorial board idiots or complain about the size of a headline, stop and consider that there's more work involved than meets the scrutiny of your eye. And, believe it or not, we do make mistakes.

This is not by any means an excuse to permit errors to make their way into our pages. I'm only one in a group of many that wants this paper to be the best that it can be, and that obviously can't happen without reader input. Your letters to the editor and complaints make our faults abundantly clear, but do be aware that suggestions for improvement are equally welcomed. Better yet, come join the night staff for an evening.