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Letter from the Editor

Black people in America don’t get a chance to have a voice unless they are eloquent enough to present it on platforms that are not our own. We rarely get the opportunity to express our frustration, our anger, our joy and better yet our experiences as individuals or a collective. We’re unheard. And being young doesn’t make it any better. Oftentimes we grow into a mute and more mature version of ourselves in which we carry our special moments until the grave. This should not be. This would not be if there were outlets where we could store our significance. A place where overtime they’d build value and be noted as important by others. This is the opportunity writing provides. Especially when you know how to do it at a high level. 

For decades, The Hilltop has served as the example for newspapers across the country when it comes to collecting the courage to speak openly on Black life. Not only on a college campus but on American soil. Our legacy has grown to include the century’s most notable authors and forward thinkers. In growing to understand the history of this purposeful publication I am eager to continue planting seeds of fruition. As a two time self published author, former international journalism fellow at Princeton University, and a freelance writer I am eager to use my expertise to share with students, faculty and staff. I am passionate about empowering those around me to pursue publishing articles that speak to what has shaped them. It is important to document a narrative that frames the fragile side of Black life. One that captures our perspectives, our past, and our push for the future. I am certain that under my leadership we can accomplish all of this and more.

Over the course of the last year there was a drastic change at The Hilltop due to the pandemic. The level of dedication and communication declined drastically leaving editors and writers without the support they needed to fulfill their duties. After being selected to work within the role of Editor in Chief I am undoubtedly working to revive these areas in addition to modernizing our print publication. 

In order to regenerate our newspaper, I plan to provide numerous training sessions that speak to our specific needs. The first being the low level of student engagement on our platform. We must rebuild an audience that includes the student body at The Hilltop. This means writing more stories that shine a spotlight on our students and our issues. The language of the paper has to be free and relatable. It must emit emotion and feeling which is what we have a history of doing. Our writers need to be trained in how to write in this manner professionally. We have a large network that includes editors and former professors across the nation who are able to teach each of us how to find our unique voice. Through sessions with experts in the first few months of school I believe we all will be better writers and more prepared for the workforce.

Newspapers aren’t appreciated how they used to be but that doesn’t mean news isn’t. As a team, we are continuing to publish pieces that you will treasure while advancing The Hilltop legacy. This is a new regime.

Sincerely,

Ashleigh Fields
Editor in Chief