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Understanding our content

Tips and pitches Print sections Multimedia Production teams Types of opinion pieces

An overview of the paper’s different sections, the various kinds of content we produce and the work that goes into that production.

Tips and pitches

We encourage community members to send in suggestions of things for StudLife to cover. You can submit your pitches and tips through this Google form, which gives you the option to remain anonymous. You can also reach out to individual editors by finding their email address on this page.

Pitches and tips can range from a question about University policy you would like us to answer to suggestions of an interesting person for us to profile or a shady event for us to investigate.

These are the five main sections that appear in StudLife each week.

News

The News section covers everything from campus pandemic policies to academics and Washington University’s relationship to the St. Louis region. Recent news articles have included breaking news coverage of firearms in a fraternity house and Student Union impeachment scandals, in-depth histories of campus movements and investigations into University trustees’ Covid-era in-person events or how state politics might affect student activists. Senior Ted Moskal leads the news team. You can reach the editors by emailing [email protected] or filling out our tip form.

Scene

The Scene section provides features about the people, places and things that make up the Washington University community. The section publishes profiles, Q+As, advice columns and other views into the lives of Washington University students, faculty, staff and neighbors. Past articles have included a profile of the Washington University student who played Russell in the movie Up, a photo and audio essay on the culture of pickup Frisbee that developed during the pandemic, an interview with University law professor Lee Epstein about the legacy of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and an exploration of the importance of shared physical spaces for Black students on campus. Sophomores Olivia Poolos and Julia Robbins are the Senior Scene Editors. You can reach them by emailing [email protected] or filling out our tip form.

Sports

The Sports section’s coverage primarily consists of news and features regarding Washington University’s 17 varsity athletics teams. The section also sometimes includes coverage of club or intramural sports and often features commentary from students on local or national sports. Recent work has included a look at the University’s head coach racial diversity, breaking news regarding student-athlete discontent and extensive coverage of the baseball team’s first-ever trip to the Division III World Series. Senior Grady Nance and sophomore Clara Richards are the Senior Sports Editors. You can reach them by emailing [email protected] or filling out our tip form.

Cadenza

The Cadenza section focuses on arts and entertainment in the Washington University community. The section covers everything from the University’s many cultural shows to student art exhibitions and movie or album reviews. Recent projects have included a collection of interviews with the campus a cappella groups, a review of the first in-person show in more than a year, a critique of Disney’s animation of Black characters and many profiles of campus arts and entertainment figures. Sophomores Gracie Hime and Annabel Shen are the Senior Cadenza Editors. You can reach them by emailing [email protected] or filling out our tip form.

Forum

The Forum section is StudLife’s home for opinion pieces and community member perspectives regarding the Washington University community. Forum publishes four types of content: staff articles, opinion submissions, letters to the editor and staff editorials. We explain each type of article in more detail below. Past Forum content has ranged from a reported feature calling for changes to the University’s mental health resources to submissions that have sparked activism on campus and commentary on community happenings. The Forum section strives to include a diverse array of perspectives and is working to include more faculty, staff and neighbor voices in its coverage during the 2021-2022 year. Junior Jamila Dawkins and sophomore Reilly Brady are the Senior Forum Editors. You can reach them by emailing [email protected]

Multimedia

In addition to those five sections, StudLife has a growing multimedia team. The multimedia staff supports the efforts of the other sections, such as with projects like the Portrait Representation Project or StudLife Wrapped, while also producing multimedia-focused content of their own, such as Editor’s Note, StudLife’s weekly podcast, special audio series like Reopening and photo essays or videos.

Photo

Senior Curran Neenan and junior Brian Cui lead the StudLife photo team, whose work ranges from sports and protests to photo essays and event coverage. You can reach the photo editors by emailing [email protected]

Illustrations

Senior HN Hoffmann leads our illustrations team, which makes graphics and other visualizations and supports the StudLife design team with our special issues. You can reach HN and the illustrations team by emailing [email protected]

Audio and visual

Senior Jaden Satenstein and sophomore Kamala Madireddi lead our audio and visual teams. Recent audio and visual work includes the launch of the Editor’s Note weekly podcast series, a video about voting options in Missouri and a visual introduction to campus study spots for incoming students. You can reach the audio and visual teams by emailing [email protected]

Production teams

In addition to leading the Sports section, senior Grady Nance runs our copy desk, which checks stories for spelling, grammar and style and works to ensure clarity throughout the newspaper. You can reach the copy team by emailing [email protected]

Sophomore Sarah Wang leads our design team, which uses tools like Adobe Illustrator and Adobe InDesign to manage the layout and visual production of our print and special issues. The editors often run design trainings, so students do not have to be familiar with the Adobe suite to join the design team. You can reach the editors by emailing [email protected]

Senior Sabrina Spence leads our social media team, which manages the StudLife Twitter, Instagram and Facebook accounts. You can reach Sabrina and the social media team by emailing [email protected]

Sophomore Noah Vermes leads our engagement team, which works to determine how StudLife can best engage with the Washington University community. The engagement team manages our daily email editions, events and collaborations with campus organizations and other initiatives. You can reach Vivienne and the engagement team by emailing [email protected]

Senior Nathan Springman leads our web team, which uses computer science and other engineering skills to improve the online StudLife product. The web team develops projects like WU in Focus, troubleshoots problems with Wordpress, which hosts studlife.com, helps improve the user experience on the website and generally supports our online presence. You can reach Nathan and the web team by emailing [email protected]

Students can also get involved with our business team, which sells advertising, coordinates promotions and deals with other non-editorial aspects of the paper. You can join the business team by emailing StudLife’s general manager, Adrienne Coleman at [email protected]

In addition to our print and digital content, StudLife also publishes multiple special issues each year. These issues range from Starting Line, which introduces new students to the Washington University community, to the Housing Guide, which provides information about the University’s housing options. If you have suggestions about a special issue you would like to see us publish, you can let us know by emailing [email protected]

Types of opinion pieces

A quick overview:

Opinion submissions

Opinion submissions (previously known as “op-eds”) are written and submitted by members of the community who are unaffiliated with StudLife. These articles solely reflect the opinion of the author or authors, not that of StudLife or its editors. To submit an opinion piece, email the Senior Forum Editors, Jamila Dawkins and Reilly Brady, at [email protected] with the subject line “Opinion Submission.” We encourage community members of all backgrounds to submit opinion pieces—StudLife is a student newspaper, but we strive to include the voices of people beyond students, from faculty and staff to alumni and campus neighbors or St. Louis residents.

StudLife fact-checks every opinion piece thoroughly, just as we do every other piece we publish. We reserve the right to reject opinion submissions for any reason, namely for being factually inaccurate, racist, sexist, homophobic, transphobic or otherwise objectionable. Opinion submissions can be written by multiple people, but all authors must be included in the byline. As of January 18, 2022, opinion submissions cannot have a list of co-signatories; rather, if desired, authors may link a [public] petition. Except in extreme circumstances, StudLife does not publish anonymous opinion submissions, and in those circumstances at least one editor must know the identity of the article’s author.

Letters to the editor

Letters to the editor are opinion submissions that respond to other StudLife articles or to StudLife content in general. Community members should include a link to the initial StudLife article or articles in their letter. The same standards for opinion submissions apply to letters to the editor.

If you would like to provide feedback on the work StudLife does, you can also fill out this form.

Staff editorials

Staff editorials exist to provide an additional student perspective on key issues relating to the Washington University community. Staff editorials are the product of the regular meetings of the StudLife editorial board, which is comprised of editors from across the StudLife staff.

The editorial board operates independently of the StudLife news team. News and photo editors are not members of the editorial board and do not attend editorial board meetings except to occasionally provide informational context on a given topic. Once editorial board members choose a topic at a given meeting, any editors who have reported on the topic within the previous full semester recuse themselves and do not participate in the meeting. This recusal policy enables us to ensure the integrity of our news reporting and build trust with our readership.

Each StudLife staff editorial includes a list of staffers present at the relevant editorial board meeting or meetings. The Senior Forum Editors lead discussions at editorial board meetings and can either assign staff editorials to individual members of the editorial board or choose to write the editorials themselves. Staff editorials represent the opinion of a majority of editorial board members present at the meeting, not that of the newspaper or the newspaper’s news section. We only publish staff editorials if there is a quorum (half plus one) of editorial board members present at the relevant meeting.

The editorial board strives to cover a diverse array of material in staff editorials, but we know there is always more room for improvement. If you have a topic you would like to see in a future staff editorial, you can submit suggestions by emailing [email protected]

The members of the 2021-2022 StudLife editorial board are: Editor-in-chief Matthew Friedman; Managing Editor Em McPhie and Isabella Neubauer; Senior Forum Editors Reilly Brady and Jamila Dawkins; Junior Forum Editor Serin Koh, Senior Scene Editors Julia Robbins and Olivia Poolos; Senior Cadenza Editors Annabel Shen and Gracie Hime; Senior Sports Editors Grady Nance and Clara Richards; Senior Multimedia Editors HN Hoffmann, Kamala Madireddi and Jaden Satenstein; Senior Social Media Editor Sabrina Spence; Senior Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Editor Ani Kesanapally; and Senior Engagement Editor Noah Vermes.

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