CHAPEL HILL, NC–After covering campus events well for the last few weeks and being one of the only institutions to address the recent actions of the Board of Governors, The Daily Tar Heel called home yesterday to tell its parents that it finally felt like a newspaper.
“My first real journalism,” the glowing student paper rhapsodized. ” Did you see the links I sent you? Don’t worry, I’ve got paper copies, too.
“I’ve been trying to write stuff like this all year,” the emotional DTH added. “I can’t believe the chance finally came.”
The Daily Tar Heel also celebrated its accomplishments with its peers, buying a round of drinks for the Campus Y, Campus BluePrint, and other friends later in the afternoon at Linda’s. Andrea Morris, a professor in the school of journalism who has mentored the DTH in its time on campus, said the paper has a right to be proud.
“It’s good to see [The Daily Tar Heel] get into the spirit of being a newspaper,” she said. “It still has a lot to learn, of course, and it should keep at it this semester by investigating how athletes are adjusting to the supposed changes in academic standards, but it’s amazing to see how far it’s come already.”
Morris said that the DTH has already shared dreams of moving on to be a newspaper in a big city like New York or Los Angeles. While she said she was glad to see the paper’s optimism, she cautioned it that jobs for newspapers are increasingly scarce, and it shouldn’t be ashamed if it has to stay around Chapel Hill for a little while longer.
Whatever lies ahead for the DTH, in the semester and in its career, the paper said it would take time to appreciate and reflect on the present. Even so, its parents, the Durham Herald-Sun and the Greensboro News & Record, cast disillusioning light on its excitement.
“Your mother and I thought we were hotshots once too, but our dreams of being newspapers were quashed long ago, the Herald-Sun said. “It doesn’t matter how good you are. This industry just isn’t what it used to be.”
“Why do you have to be so discouraging, Herald?” the News & Record interjected. “Your father is just being bitter, dear,” she told the silent DTH. “There’s nothing wrong with getting excited about being a newspaper. Just… know that your father and I want you to be happy and we love you.”
“Aw, who knows,” the Herald-Sun said at last. “At least you’re out there trying. Maybe you’ll figure out something we never could. At least you’re not talking about trying to make it as a humor publication or something.”