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College Avenue Can Do Better – and for That, We’d Like To Share Your Stories

NotProudToBe protester holding sign

Dear readers,

Within the first weeks of the school year, we’ve already witnessed an incident involving four White students in blackface. A week later, a swastika was found next to a community coordinator’s door in Aggie Village. These recent incidents have certainly shocked the campus community, but it is ultimately just the latest iteration of discriminatory behavior persistent within the past three years at Colorado State University. The fact that such incidents have been a mainstay on campus for the past four years is irrevocably heartbreaking.   

An incident of racism has been a highlight of every semester since 2016. Since then, Rocky Mountain Student Media Corporation – College Avenue‘s parent company – has reported over 20 incidents related to bigotry; from a noose found hanging outside a Black resident assistant’s dorm room in 2017 to clashes between White nationalists and anti-fascist protesters in 2018. Intentional or otherwise, these incidents perpetuate racist and racially-ignorant beliefs, none of which have any place on our campus. 

As journalists, we acknowledge our roles as storytellers and conversation leaders and the responsibilities these roles carry within our community. We also recognize our deficiencies in reporting about campus diversity and fostering its discussion. As a first-generation immigrant and person of color, I’ll be the first to say we haven’t done enough as a publication to address these issues and share the voices of those most affected on campus.

At our core, College Avenue is a lifestyle magazine for the campus and Fort Collins community. Sometimes – perhaps more often than we’re aware of – lifestyle includes experiencing discrimination and microaggressions: the everyday slights, behaviors and statements which marginalized groups experience. Thus, we’d like to make the first steps in becoming a media outlet that engages with the full spectrum of the CSU community and the issues that define us.

We want College Avenue to be a publication underrepresented communities on this campus can trust to tell their stories accurately. Our reason-for-being as a lifestyle magazine is, after all, tied directly to the rich collection of lived experiences within our community.

So, this year, we’re making a stronger commitment to sharing the stories of underrepresented groups on campus. To do that, we intend to schedule and attend meetings with the Student Diversity Programs and Services to have honest, thorough discussions about making College Avenue an inclusive platform for underrepresented voices. Based on these discussions, we will craft a diversity statement, which we will then send to the students and staff of the SDPS offices to receive feedback. 

We want College Avenue to be a publication underrepresented communities on this campus can trust to tell their stories accurately. Our reason-for-being as a lifestyle magazine is, after all, tied directly to the rich collection of lived experiences within our community. 

College Avenue meets weekly on Wednesdays at 5:00 p.m. Starting Oct. 2, meetings will take place in the Student Media newsroom, ground floor of the Lory Student Center.

We honor those who share their pain and glories and respect that there are people among us who experience battle fatigue as a result of microaggressions. We endeavor to make this publication not only a safe space but a brave space, too. 

It’s about time College Avenue started cultivating relationships with those in the community who feel their voices aren’t being heard or just wish to be heard. We invite everyone to join this conversation and help us be a better magazine for the community. 

College Avenue meets weekly on Wednesdays at 5:00 p.m. Starting Oct. 2, our weekly meetings will take place in the Student Media newsroom, ground floor of the Lory Student Center. If you can’t make the meetings, prefer to meet in a personal safe space or just to inquire about our work, send us an email at collegavenue@collegian.com. We’ll gladly take the time to listen. 

We hope you as readers will aid us in our goal to be a better form of media – one that accurately tells the stories of everyone at CSU. This is only the first step, but we want to help make a difference on campus. 

 

Sincerely, and on behalf of the College Avenue editorial team,

Gabriel Go, Editor-in-Chief

Endorsed by:

    • Taylor Sandal, Executive Editor
    • Haley Candelario, Features Editor
    • Mackenzie Pinn, Photography Director
    • Meg Metzger-Seymour, Creative Director
    • Caleb Carpenter, Creative Director