The Voice Grows – New Editor Expands Staff and Brings New Focus to Voice

Dear friends and loyal Voice readers,

I’m delighted to announce that The Voice has a brand new Managing Editor and you might already know her. Sandra Livingston has been writing for The Voice since 2005, submitting some fantastic articles on a wide range of topics as well as a terrific book review for the newsletter of the Athabasca Univerity Literature Society.

A program student at AU who lives in Ontario, Sandra is keenly aware of the joys and challenges encountered by our readers and students of distance education.

And what of me?

Readers have no doubt noticed that I have had less time to devote to The Voice for some months now. While I love this publication and will always remember it with fondness (I began with The Voice in 2002, hired on a pitch to move to a magazine, rather than a newspaper format), the fact is that AUSU is growing at a rate of 10% or more a year, keeping pace with the University, and the demands of representing the AUSU membership continue to grow. While it was once easy for a single person to balance Voice production with communications and management duties for AUSU, those days are gone. AUSU itself has increased from one to three staff, with more positions possibly being created in the next year or two. For some time the Voice has been completely regularly over the weekend, as my AUSU duties fill my days (and some evenings) during the week. The staffing change will ensure that your paper comes out on time, that is has the attention it deserves, and that I have more time to devote to my AUSU duties.

I am not leaving The Voice, however. I will remain your Editor in Chief, overseeing operations and managing Voice finances. We do not intend to dramatically change the paper – rather, we want to expand it by increasing content and the breadth of coverage. Readers like our format and the kinds of articles we offer, and we will always keep that in mind. Having a managing editor who can devote her full time to the Voice will ensure that we can offer more of what you want.

In Sandra we have found an editor who cares passionately for this paper and the people it represents. She has some fantastic ideas for bringing the student voice to the forefront of this paper (which is, after all, our purpose), and I’m excited to see them come to fruition.

Also, because the new editor does not also work directly for AUSU, she is in a position to view AUSU operations with a more detached eye, and I encourage her to provide commentary on the union wherever she sees fit.

Of course to make this paper a success, nothing is more important than the writers. We need people who want to share their stories, and who can write with passion and conviction. All topics are considered, because our readers are from every walk of life. If you don’t have time to write an article, you may want to be interviewed by Linda for a student profile. If that’s not to your liking, then submit a Letter to the Editor to share your thoughts with fellow readers.

We’d also love to revive a column like the popular “Sounding Off”, where students can share their comments on important issues. We need you, however, to tell us what issues you want to see covered.

With our new editor in place, The Voice is ready to fulfill its potential and become the best student publication it can be.

I’ve had a great time with The Voice, and I hope this position is fulfilling for Sandra as it has been for me. I’ve learned so much about the AU student body from this paper, and about Canadians and people around the world. I will take that knowledge with me wherever I go,and be wiser for it.

Thank you for sharing your stories and lives with The Voice. Please never hesitate to write and let us know what moves you, and how we can serve you better,

Tamra Ross
Editor in Chief.