Dear SNU Student,
If you have interacted with The Echo but never recognized your own voice among those that we promote, I am sorry. If you have read our stories and failed to see your own woven into what we claim to be SNU’s narrative, I am sorry. If you have looked at our headlines and scrolled past them because you have not been represented, I am sorry. Our team is sorry, and we are asking for both your forgiveness and the grace to grow.
When I first came to SNU, I immediately knew that I wanted to join the Echo. I read the tagline, “Our Voice,” and I knew that I wanted to be a part of an organization that would work to amplify the many voices at our university. Today, I find myself in my dream position, editor of the Echo, and for the first time, I am asking myself: when people read this publication, whose voice do they hear?
The Echo has striven to be “Our Voice” since 1928. This near hundred-year legacy is one that I am beyond honored to be a part of, yet I cannot help but wonder how many SNU students feel completely disconnected from what this legacy has to offer.
For years, people on this campus have been tirelessly working towards justice on all fronts: asking difficult questions and digging into painful conversations, and our publication has documented it all. This is something that many people who have served on the Echo staff are proud of.
However, I think that it is time for us to recognize that no matter how many things we do correctly, there will always be areas where we can become aware of our faults and of our biases, and when these things are revealed, it is imperative that we repent. We must seek forgiveness and turn towards a new path.
I believe that this year, we as a student body are perfectly poised to turn towards love and justice and peace. I believe that we are faced with the perfect opportunity to listen and truly hear the voices that have been crying out, not only from the margins but from the heart of our SNU community for far too long.
So, as a publication, we at the Echo ask for your forgiveness. As we turn our ear toward the true heartbeat of SNU, all we ask is that you join us. Lift your voice, and it will be heard. We are committing to the best of our ability to cut through agendas, to listen carefully to what you are saying, and to find the best way to echo each and every voice present at Southern Nazarene University because The Echo has never been and never will be a single establishment’s voice – it’s our voice.