Editor’s Note: This year four candidates are running for three available voting seats on the Texas Student Media Board of Operating Trustees, which oversees The Daily Texan, the Cactus yearbook, the Texas Travesty humor publication, Texas Student Television and the KVRX 91.7 FM radio station. Three candidates are running for the two at-large seats and one student for the one open Moody College of Communication seat. Candidates were asked shortly after their certification to write two 500-word columns. The second column focuses on a topic of the candidate’s choosing relating to their campaign. Candidates who participated wrote their own headlines. Only light typographical corrections were made. Among the at-large candidates, the top two vote-getters will be seated. Jan Ross Piedad, the Moody College of Communication candidate, has written a column that is running here. She agreed to forgo print space. For more information on the candidates, please visit our candidate database here.
I wish someone else were reading this. That’s not because I don’t like you, quite the opposite. I admire that you are here, but that’s just it, you’re already here.
You sought this piece out. You’re reading this because you care about the welfare of your campus. You see The Daily Texan as a valuable way to take the pulse of our little microcosm of the world. I don’t mean to say I don’t want you to read this but I wish someone who doesn’t usually look at the Texan gave it a chance today.
I wish that person would stumble on this paper for once, see the passion of the writers, feel the combination of journalistic talent and fresh perspectives, marvel at the quality at their fingertips, and — after all of that — find my little corner here. I want to talk to that person about what they saw in these pages and pixels. I want them to talk to me about the brilliance here already and the greatness that could be.
The best version of this outlet, and our whole student media footprint at this university, is still out there. Between the storied tradition of each source and the progressive ideas out in the student body, the constant consumers and the part-time fans and the people who have never listened or read or watched.
At their best, our student media presence is in dialogue with its history and future at once. KVRX throws an hour of Texas country against a show of video game scores and dares the listener to find a station-wide identity beyond that eclecticism.
The Daily Texan was the leading voice for de-segregation of campus decades ago and a forum for the President of IFC and members of minority groups on campus to have a healthy conversation about their disconnect a week ago. Our student-produced pages and airwaves should reflect our community as a whole. While we are doing a good job as it stands, we can never realize that goal unless more people join the conversation.
The responsibility to seek that better version of our media presence falls to both consumers and management. Obviously editors and managers and producers understand their role, but the audience and the manager’s manager need to come to terms with their place in that process. That’s where I can help.
If elected to the Texas Student Media Board, I want to work toward that understanding. The board needs to pursue the dueling goals of preserving these institutions and pushing them toward greatness. I want to be a part of that process. I want to take part in guiding these outlets into a creative renaissance while financially ensuring their welfare.
In an ideal world, 50,000 or more people would be engaged with these media. I dream of a Texan media big tent with breadth of perspectives and consumption. At the same time, that size should not hinder us in pushing on to a better tomorrow. I take back what I said, I’m glad you’re not someone else. I just wish you brought more friends.
Proctor is an English and business honors senior from Nashville. He is running for an at-large seat on the Texas Student Media Board of Operating Trustees.