Media adviser encourages volunteer and reader involvement

One thing is certain as I settle into my new home in the Student Publications building this week.

Among the personal items I will unpack and place in the office is a small, framed saying that serves as an important reminder of the power of the written word.

“One drop of ink can make a million think!”

We don’t have quite that many readers of The Flor-Ala and Diorama, but you get the idea.

We hope we can make students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni and members of the Shoals community think through our words, photos, artwork, tweets, videos and page designs. We understand the great responsibility that comes with our task.

The student media staff and volunteers are off to an impressive start this academic year, so my first goal as the new student media adviser is to not mess up their success.

I come to the University of North Alabama with almost 30 years of newspaper experience, including my most recent position as executive editor of the TimesDaily in Florence. While I am new to the staff of UNA and have a lot to learn, I am familiar with the university as a member of the Student Media Board, supervisor of student interns, parent of two former UNA students, and fan of the university’s great music, theatrical and sporting events. I appreciate the cultural and economic impact UNA has on our community. Looking around at all of the new construction, I am excited to be a part of the university’s future.

I want to share my passion for the first amendment rights of students, for making a difference on campus, for great writing, compelling photography and creative page designs. I find these aspects of my profession to be great fun. I also like to have fun in my off time, from bicycling to kayaking to hiking to manning the barbecue grill.

Like a whitewater rapid or a downhill run on a mountain bike, university life can be a great adventure. It is a time of discovery, of finding out who you are and who you want to become.

The Flor-Ala and Diorama have many volunteer positions that can help you discover more about yourself and your talents. We need writers, photographers, graphic artists, business minds, sales people and others to produce great publications.

These volunteer stints can develop into paid student staff positions that can help you pay for your college and personal expenses. They can also help prepare you for a profession in communications, business and other fields.

So stop by the Student Publications building and say hello to our family. If you like what you see, stick around and we will put you to work.