Cornellians have a thing for pretentious names. We call our midterms “prelims,” our hills “slopes,” and our everything bagels “Long Island.” When it comes to stupid names, we at The Cornell Daily Sun are no better — and I’m not just talking about those times when design editor Emma Williams ’19 would sarcastically call me “Supreme Leader” in her emails. No, the pretentious name to which we are most attached is “compet.”
What is compet? The exact etymology is, like too much at Cornell, shrouded in mystery, but if you look closely, you’ll notice it bears a striking resemblance to the word “compete” with the second “e” lopped off. Coincidentally, compet is the time during which staffers at The Sun compete against each other for editorships.
Something crazy happened this past summer. Thousands and thousands of Cornellians — one-quarter of all undergraduates — got up and left Ithaca, likely for good. And yet, last Friday, thousands and thousands of new students rushed to fill those vacant spots, ensuring that, at least for one more year, Cornell will remain at full force. Here at The Sun, we too said goodbye to a sterling senior class, of editors, writers, photographers, designers, business associates and more. But unlike our friends at the admissions office, however, we don’t have the benefit of being on the Common App.
Cornell is no stranger to big changes. Heading into the fall semester, Cornellians eagerly anticipate President Martha Pollack’s inauguration, the opening of Cornell Tech in New York City, a proliferation of Uber and Lyft rides, and many more exciting developments. This is only the beginning of a gradual but significant growth of the University and its impact around the world. Yet there is still much to improve about the world around us, as demonstrated by unhappy events that have transpired in our country this year. The violence and racial antagonism at Charlottesville.
The Sun elected its 135th editorial board Saturday morning. As members of the incoming board, we are excited to continue the legacy of our outgoing editors, expanding The Sun’s presence within the greater Ithaca community and shaping a generation of students who take a novel approach to exploring our culture and history. Last year, we downsized our print operation, reducing the number of weekly issues from five to three. The decision was met with skepticism: would the reduction diminish the quality of our content? Needless to say, the past year has proved otherwise.
Journalism today is an important public service. In the past year especially, we have seen the traditional media fail in disappointing ways to cover many of the relevant issues and to hold various people and institutions accountable. These failures constrain the agency and imagination of our communities to build a just and democratic future. The responsibility that reporters and editors are tasked with — the responsibility to keep the public informed — is gruesomely demanding but nevertheless essential. The Cornell Daily Sun is exempt neither from the challenges that journalism faces nor newspapers’ foremost obligation to serve the community.
With the start of the new academic year, Cornell faces big changes. The College of Business begins its first semester, the search for the next Cornell president goes on and apartment buildings continue to rise on the Collegetown horizon. The Cornell Daily Sun is here with comprehensive reporting on these and other important campus issues. We take our task of student journalism seriously at The Sun. Our foremost goal is to serve the public by publishing quality, in-depth coverage.
We’ve reached a pivotal moment in history of The Cornell Daily Sun. More than just being a daily, The Sun is becoming a 24/7 publication — your go-to source for Cornell news and opinion at any time of day, in print and online.
Moving forward, The Sun refuses to continue reporting on this group until its members’ identities are verified. We feel that we cannot continue dignifying this group’s requests for anonymity as its members become more involved on-campus.
On Saturday, The Sun elected a new team of editors and managers to helm and direct this paper. As the incoming board, we are excited and ready to continue the incredible work of the 133rd Editorial Board and build The Sun’s voice on campus and in the Ithaca community. We urge you to hold us accountable as we continue informing our campus.
We have finally arrived at the conclusion of the 133rd Editorial Board’s time at The Sun. Over the past year, we’ve worked tirelessly to bring you, our loyal readers, the latest in Cornell news, athletics and culture. With you, we saw significant change occur at the University, from our sesquicentennial and President Elizabeth Garrett’s inauguration to the creation of a new college and dozens of other notable events. With the launch of our new website, The Sun took the next step towards delivering news in a way that will resonate with Cornellians and Ithacans for years to come. The members of the 133rd Editorial Board of this institution are some of the most accomplished, dedicated people at Cornell, and working with them has been an absolute privilege for me.