As I am sure many past Towerlight Editors-in-Chief can confirm, this job comes with a lot of stress that can sometimes lead to dreams (or more likely, nightmares) about a production day mishap, the misspelling of the name of a highly important person or forgetting to assemble the paper all together.
Yet after last week’s production day/waking-nightmare/disaster zone, I can now take comfort in the fact that The Towerlight can survive just about anything.
We discovered, shortly after arriving in the office early on the morning of Monday, Aug. 31, that the server we save and have saved all of our content, photos, graphics, pages and everything to for years, had failed.
We quickly slid into a state of mini-emergency after discovering that we would have to work completely without the use of our server, and that we had lost all of the photos we had taken for the issue, including our cover photo, which had been of the open football practice on Burdick field the week prior.
Thumb drives were whipped out, personal computer files were scavenged, and we reached deep into thin air in attempts to extract anything we could get our hands on.
Unsure of what to do about our lack of photos for the issue, in particular sports photos since it was the Fall 2015 Sports Preview issue, I made a desperate call to Towson’s campus photographer Kanji Takeno. Fortunately for us, he was happy to help and even additionally referred us to Megan O’Brien, the assistant director of athletics media relations, who also graciously provided us with a number of stellar photos.
In the end, the issue came together, and I felt confident that we had produced a product above and beyond what I had expected upon learning that we would basically be working with our hands tied behind our backs.
There were a few mistakes however, the largest of which was the fact that Kanji’s photo courtesy below the cover image had somehow disappeared. We had messed up on that account, there was no use fighting it, and I was concerned for how this would affect us in his eyes. After all, he had graciously helped us in our moment of desperation and we had subsequently (though not with intent) failed to hold up our side of the agreement.
Yet the email response I received from Kanji was incredibly gracious and understanding, and I felt such an immense sense of relief as I read his reply.
“When students or whoever may need help, and if I can help, I love to help them,” he said in his email.
The past two or so weeks since school has begun I have found myself meeting, working with and socializing with an incredible number of students, faculty, staff and administrators on a daily basis.
Just this semester alone I have had the pleasure of either meeting for the first time or becoming better acquainted with SGA President Kurt Anderson, CAB Director Brianne Wade, Ray Feldmann and Sedonia Martin of the communications and media relations department, Outreach Specialist and President of the Black Faculty & Staff Association Barry Evans, John Brush and Tim Leonard of the athletics department, Bethany Pace from the Honors College and even Deputy Chief of Staff Marina Cooper and Interim President Timothy Chandler. This is, of course, in addition to all those I had the opportunity to work with last year when I was in the role of arts and life editor.
And I have noticed that without fail, each of these individuals are completely invested in their contribution to making Towson University the best it can be academically, socially, and within the community.
Being surrounded by so many dedicated and helpful individuals is incredibly inspiring and has only worked to reinforce the positive feelings I have toward this semester and beyond here at Towson. I am more ecstatic than ever to dive head first into this academic year and see what fantastic and progressive movements come out of the combined efforts of all those on campus and in the community who work hard everyday to grow Towson’s legacy.