By: Carley Milligan, Editor-in-Chief
You know how parents like to create those little one-line sayings that they just love to repeat to you over and over again, in hopes that you will heed their advice? Well, in true dad fashion, my father has one that he likes to say all the time to my sister and me. “If there’s one thing you’ve got to do in life, it’s pay attention.”
He has been known to say it so frequently that for Christmas two years ago, my sister ordered him a custom t-shirt with his personal slogan printed on it, styled so that “pay attention” is written in large letters across his back. As a teenager it was one of those things I heard him say, but never really listened to. That is, of course, until I started to try out his suggestion and I saw how much more I could learn by doing so.
I have found that life is ironic and circular, and that the same topics and conversations have a habit of repeating themselves. It is these conversations, the ones that keep popping up in different areas of your life, that I encourage you to keep an eye on. In journalism, it is sometimes said that that three reoccurring instances of one thing makes it a ‘trend,’ and I have found that what begins as a whisper can develop into the largest of stories.
Look for those patterns and trends on campus and in your day-to-day life, because they will keep you one step ahead of everyone else when it comes to keeping up with what is happening around you. The more you learn, the more you understand, and the more you understand, the greater your understanding of life and society as whole will be. It can lead you to develop new perspectives on old issues, and teach you about new things you never expected to have an interest in.
In our last issue’s list of Freshman #fails to avoid this semester, our senior editor, Cody Boteler, said, “not paying attention to campus life,” was one of those fails. This couldn’t be truer as ignoring those things that are happening in your own backyard is a mistake. There are so many big and small things happening everyday on campus, and a number of them that have the potential to grow as the semester progresses.
For me personally this year, I am very interested in paying attention to the actions and goals of campus organizations such as the Center for Student Diversity, the Black Student Union, the African Diaspora Club and many others, as well as those students who have already played major roles as leaders, role models and positive conversation starters on campus.
After The Towerlight reported on the Towson student-led protest in Baltimore on April 29 last semester, followed by my summer internship at the Baltimore City Paper, where I was immersed in watching and understanding the social movements happening throughout the city, I am incredibly eager to see how these students already have begun, and will continue to, respond to the national conversation about police brutality and social injustice.
Already last week on Wednesday, the first night of the semester, a candlelight vigil and open discussion was held in Freedom Square and united roughly 300 students under the same cause. Beyond the fact that it was a positive and important event, I feel that it also sends the message that Towson University is paying attention. Our students, staff, faculty and organizations are aware and responding to this national movement that has hit close to home for many in our campus community. Starting the semester off with a welcoming and important event such as this is just one of the many ways Towson students are showing that we are learning, growing, understanding and adding to things greater than ourselves.
As always, if you have and questions, comments or noticed something you think we should be paying attention to, please visit us on the third floor of the University Union or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.