To readers of the CU Independent,
A university as large as the University of Colorado Boulder without a student press is rare, but the campus has come dangerously close. We, the staff of the CU Independent, know that there has been uncertainty surrounding our future. I would like to update our readers and our community about our continuing efforts and provide reassurance that, despite this uncertainty, I am confident that we are here to stay.
My name is Anna Haynes and I will be assuming the position of the CUI’s editor-in-chief for the 2020-2021 school year. Former editor-in-chief Robert Tann has held the position since last fall and has done an incredible job of keeping the CUI not only afloat, but also thriving during tough times.
I am taking on a unique task with my new role—the task of ensuring that the CU Independent doesn’t vanish entirely. Until recently, the CU Independent has operated under CU Boulder’s College of Media, Communication and Information (CMCI). In December 2019, CMCI announced it would be ceasing our funding by May 2020 which includes the loss of our newsroom in Armory 206b and longtime faculty advisor Gil Asakawa, in favor of its own media venture. While our efforts to find sources of funding continue, we have yet to secure a long-term solution. COVID-19 has further complicated funding negotiations, as CU Boulder has experienced financial losses as a result of the pandemic.
We received an outpouring of support from journalists and readers alike in response to this news. For example, the Rocky Mountain Collegian, Colorado State University’s student print publication, published its own letter from the editor in solidarity with the CUI. This support has reassured us that we are not alone in our fight to stay alive.
I am happy to confirm that CMCI has agreed to provide us with funding as well as newsroom and storage space-effective through mid-December of this year, for which we are incredibly grateful. As for the spring semester, we are continuing to have negotiations with potential funding sources, including the University of Colorado Student Government (CUSG).
The CUI’s achievements cannot be overstated. Earlier this year, our staff won three Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) Mark of Excellence awards with three finalists. The CUI has also provided extensive coverage in the face of COVID-19. I could not be more proud, and I hope that we will be able to continue to provide award-winning journalism to our community.
The first time I was harassed for my role as a student journalist, I was in shock. I had heard it before, but had never truly believed it until I experienced it myself—journalism, especially student journalism, is grossly undervalued. This only makes our efforts to keep afloat harder, but I am confident that will the help of those who continue to value journalism, we will continue to thrive.
We hope that we can continue to work with CMCI and CUSG to reach long-term solutions and ensure that CU Boulder’s only independent student publication will not disappear. I am beyond honored that I have been given the torch as the new editor-in-chief, and I am excited to light the way for the CUI’s next phase of life.
If you would like to donate to the CUI, you can find our GoFundMe here. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for all of your support.
Anna Haynes, CU Independent Editor-in-Chief
You can contact Anna Haynes at firstname.lastname@example.org.