Tristan Johnston, Coordinating Editor & Connor Doyle, Managing Editor
The Runner’s first issue in September tends to be one of the most exciting. The halls of Kwantlen Polytechnic University are once again teeming with students, and even at KPU—dogged as we are by our reputation as a commuter school—where you find students, you’ll find at least some measure of student life.
Typically, this is when we take stock of things, both on campus and in the surrounding communities, and it’s often the best time to introduce changes to the paper. In this case, one of those changes is a logo.
Other changes are sure to come, namely to our contributor pool. The Runner is sustained by the efforts of talented students, and every year we lose some of our best contributors to the opportunities of post-graduate life. But their work is always replaced by the efforts of new students, and we’re hoping that this year, you might just be among them.
If you’re looking to get involved, working at The Runner is one of the best ways to engage with your university. You’ll find yourself talking to the most interesting and hard working people this school has to offer, and sharing their stories with your classmates. You’ll attend events both on and off campus, cover the news as it breaks, and gain skills at a rate that’ll make you dangerously employable. You might even get to know a thing or two about KPU that makes you feel proud to go to school here, if you don’t feel that way already.
You’ll have a lot of fun working with us, but you’ll also serve an important purpose while you’re here. The Runner’s goal is at once to promote student culture and to help hold the powers that be at this university accountable. That might sound a little overly ambitious for a university rag, but we have some experience doing it. In 2011, the Kwantlen Student Association was embroiled in a scandal that made national headlines. Some of the councillors were getting away with things that people tend to associate with lesser Bond villains, and The Runner was there to call them on it.
We showed everyone that the association was essentially defrauding the students who had elected them, and helped the student body get the information they needed to kick them out.
Now, most of the time, what we do isn’t nearly so glamorous or dramatic, but we still serve an important function in the KPU system. These days the KSA (who are in no way affiliated with or related to the 2011 ne’er-do-wells) are doing some really good, really important work—work that can have a remarkable effect on students attending KPU now and in the future—and we want to make sure you’re informed about it. And when there’s controversy or when someone in power is getting up to no good, we’re still here to make sure people know what’s going on, and what they can do to stop it.
Don’t think that this invitation only extends to students in the journalism program, either. We do have our aspiring journalists—who pursue stories for us more ardently than most students pursue their degrees—but we also have English students, Fine Arts students, Creative Writing students, Design students, and even those outside of the humanities like Business and Psychology majors.
Essentially, we’re here to share KPU’s stories, and we hope to represent the spectrum of KPU identities. We want to activate students, whether that means bringing in new writers, photographers, and artists to contribute to our paper or simply encouraging people to pick up a copy of The Runner between classes and peruse the stories that interest them. We hope that you’ll like us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and if you want to be a part of what we do, we hope that you’ll message us at firstname.lastname@example.org or attend one of our weekly meetings on Monday at 1 pm in our office on the third floor of the Surrey Library.
So, if you feel like you want something more from your time at KPU than just a degree, The Runner is here to help with that. There’s a lot to discover at this school, and if you want to start exploring, just turn the page and begin.