Wednesday, March 11, 2020.
I didn’t have class so I spent my day in The Spectrum office, crammed into a crowded conference room with a few other editors, desperately refreshing my email while waiting for an update on COVID-19 at UB.
Little did I know that would be the last time I would step foot in The Spectrum office with the rest of our staff — until this semester, when, vaccinated and masked, our journalists will return to 132 Student Union.
I am so excited to get back to doing what we all love, which is working tirelessly to bring you the news. And we have a ton of news to bring you.
In the last year and a half, an unprecedented number of global, national and regional stories have made their way into the public conscience.
University officials announced in June that masks wouldn’t be required indoors, but then, in response to the surging Delta variant, they changed their minds. Will the school’s health and safety guidelines remain constant throughout the semester? Or is a more restrictive approach in store for students, faculty and staff?
In Buffalo, India Walton shocked four-term incumbent Byron Brown in the Democratic Primary for mayor. Will she be able to deliver a knockout blow in the general election? Or will Brown be able to secure an unequaled fifth term as a write-in candidate?
Even nationally, questions abound about the future of American troops in Afghanistan, the political prospects of disgraced politicians Donald Trump and Andrew Cuomo and the fate of the virus.
At The Spectrum, we can’t wait to delve into these issues and serve as the fourth estate.
I’m really proud of the work we did last year: we covered mental health services and the lack of mental health days, quarantine dorms and new on-campus housing policies, and students’ experiences with COVID-19 in the U.S. and abroad.
This year, as we all return to campus and once again have access to numerous reporting resources, we expect to provide the information members of the campus community need to make decisions about themselves and their neighbors.
But here’s the thing: if the last year and a half was defined by its unprecedented nature, the upcoming semester is something different: precedented.
We have been here before. We are seasoned professionals at completing our daily health checks and locating the nearest hand sanitizer dispensers on campus.
So, in a year as daunting as the last, I find a strange comfort in knowing that at least I’ll get to return to Buffalo and stand in the Pistachio’s line again, smiling and waving at Maurice from behind my mask — maybe they’ll even keep mobile ordering as an option.
Fans will fill the stands of UB Stadium for Saturday afternoon football games again.
The Academic Spine will go back to being a place of coffee and conversation.
And the print copy of The Spectrum will return to newsstands every Wednesday of the semester. We’ll have coverage of One World Café construction and UB’s climate pledges and the new football coaching staff and the campus entertainment scene.
And, of course, we’ll be asking for your input, story ideas and feedback.
This publication can’t function without readers like you. Thank you.
Reilly Mullen is the editor in chief and can be reached at email@example.com
Reilly Mullen is the editor-in-chief for The Spectrum. She double majors in English and political science. She enjoys Dunkin' iced lattes, arguing with frat boys and buying cool shoes. A former web, features and news editor, she write columns about her chronic illnesses and taking down the patriarchy.