Spartan is staying!

Artwork by Joe Vyvial


A couple weeks ago, it was announced that the “Castleton Spartan,” Johnson’s “Basement Medicine,” and Lyndon’s “The Critic” would have to unite as a singular Vermont State University newspaper at the end of this semester. 

It came as a shock to us all. Speaking for our team, we were sad and disappointed to have to say goodbye to what we have all worked so hard on. 

Additionally, we had logistical concerns, such as how we would be able to coordinate with the other campuses, design together, and distribute physical copies to create something that represented each of us. 

But then we learned late last week that we will not have to unify, after all. 

There apparently was enough push back to call it off. 

Spartan advisor Dave Blow and I are certainly relieved, since he was chosen to advise the new publication, and I would have represented Castleton’s end of it. 

We were hesitant, but willing. 

I admired the team’s open-mindedness to the operation, something I didn’t have much of. 

I didn’t want the papers to merge. It was personal, sure. I’ve been a reporter since my freshman year. It was more than that, though. 

Mostly, I thought it was unnecessary. A lot of hassle for something that works perfectly fine already. 

But this whole loop-de-loop has made me wonder how I can improve as an editor; how I can manage my team better, expand the types of news we cover, even tie in other campuses when it’s relevant. 

We should learn about other campuses. It doesn’t have to be forced, though. 

Naturally, if we begin to open lines of communication, we will inevitably meet new people and see what other campuses have to offer.

It was amazing to see the shared participation at the Montpelier State House press conference in November. 

Although I had not personally met Dayne Bell, editor of “Basement Medicine,” prior to him reaching out to me about the potential merger, I recognized him. 

He spoke at the press conference, expressing his concerns and disappointment over staff and faculty cuts from Optimization 2.0. 

Isn’t that already a connection? Having a shared interest and experience with someone from another campus?

Stress of the situation aside, collaboration like that is what we need to become more unified, as VTSU aspires. 

I’m excited to pay attention to “Basement Medicine” and “The Critic” more. 

I still believe in campus pride, though. It’s what makes a community thrive. 

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