Issue 1 – The Quindecim, The Independent Student Newspaper of Goucher College

"The Quindecim, The Independent Student Newspaper of Goucher College - Issue 1 - September 10, 2010 - Front Page"

The first issue of the revitalized student newspaper at Goucher College was published on Friday, September 10, 2010. I’ll be posting our front page designs as an opportunity to reflect on each of the 14 issues we will publish this academic year. Below is the Editor’s Letter I wrote explaining all the changes we made to improve The Quindecim as it appeared in this first issue.

‘Quindecim redecorates, revitalizes’

Billie Weiss


Student journalism is a tradition that has endured at Goucher College for nearly a century. Founded in 1913, The Quindecim has served as a voice of the students during the most important moments in the college’s rich history.

Last year, however, The Q, as it is more commonly referred to, nearly disappeared. For almost the entire Fall semester, we failed to publish a single issue of the newspaper.

The grand opening of the Athenaeum, the addition of multiple new athletic facilities, and Karl Rove’s memorable visit to campus were among the numerous newsworthy occasions marking Goucher’s 125th anniversary that we did not cover.

A small group of persistent and loyal editors, short on resources and staff, managed to publish a first issue. We spent countless late nights throughout the year picking the publication up off its feet.

I’ve been a part of this newspaper for three years. I’ve seen it at its best and at its worst. Now, as Editor-In-Chief, it is my duty to inspire others in revitalizing our publication. The other editors and I share a common vision: the reestablishment of The Quindecim as Goucher’s reliable source of student news.

Our mission is to provide Goucher College with transparent, trustworthy, verified information. We seek to give all aspects of life on campus equal coverage. Through engaging but unbiased, factual reporting, we aim to spark lively conversation throughout the Goucher community.

My priority is to restore and renew the fairness and accuracy many believe The Quindecim has lacked over the past several years. With help from countless individuals and offices on campus, we’ve made big changes over the summer to ensure that this happens.

We have a new, extremely talented, diverse, and enthusiastic board of editors. The leaders of this publication are committed to upholding the highest standards of journalism. We had a huge turnout to our informational meeting last week. Over 40 students interested in journalism, reporting, writing, blogging, website design, video, multimedia, newspaper layout, social media, cartooning, advertising, and business management filled our office.

We’ve added a new Global Section to each edition of the newspaper to ensure regular coverage of one of Goucher’s most unique characteristics: the study abroad requirement. We’ll gather reactions to the requirement as well as articles, notes, memoirs, and photographs from students who have studied and who are currently studying in foreign countries. We’ll also provide coverage for stories that reach beyond Goucher’s campus.

Changes in style accompany our changes in substance. With the help of the Office of Communications, The Q has been completely redesigned with a crisp, clean, and updated layout. Our paper now has a fresh, professional, and attractive new look.

In addition to an aesthetic redesign of our website, we’ve also incorporated multimedia, including photos, videos, podcasts, and blogs. With presence on Facebook and Twitter, the Goucher community can join the conversation and share its thoughts by utilizing the expansive world of social media.

Our previously cockroach infested, cluttered, and chaotic office has been given a makeover. The walls are now covered with items one would find in a professional newsroom: past editions of our publication, maps, clocks, white boards, bulletin boards, and calendars. We’ve added new, high quality computer equipment and workspaces as well. It’s one of the most impressive student club spaces on campus, a sacred space where we can hold weekly staff meetings and produce new content on a daily basis.

It’s important to note that these improvements are useless, however, without engagement from you, the Goucher community.

I encourage you to pick up the paper. Read it. Share your thoughts on campus issues. Connect with us online. Give us ideas. Let us know how we can improve. Join our staff.

I’m confident that this type of interaction, combined with the fresh enthusiasm that has taken over this publication, will make for a truly special year. I’m excited for what’s to come.

The Q is back!

Goucher greets new year!



"Members of the Junior class celebrate the beginning of the 2010-2011 academic year at the annual Opening Ceremonies at Goucher College Wednesday, September 1, 2010."


It’s hard to believe, but I’m already a Senior at Goucher College. It’s been an amazing three years, and I’m excited to round out my time at this wonderful place.

The start to the year was crazy, so I’m just finding the time now to get back onto Billie with an I.E. and reflect on the work I’m doing. This will without a doubt be the busiest year I’ve had here. I know it’ll also be the most rewarding.

I’m the Editor-In-Chief of The Quindecim, Goucher’s Independent Student Newspaper. I spent the summer making significant changes to all aspects of the publication, and we’ve already received nothing but positive feedback and encouragement from many people on campus and in the Towson area.

Throughout the year, I’ll also be writing an extensive Senior Thesis for honors in the Communications and Media Studies department. Because overseeing our newspaper is what I’m most passionate about (and what takes up a major part of my schedule), I’ve decided to focus the project on student newspapers on college campuses throughout the country. Specifically, I’ll be looking at the balance and interaction between college administrations and student newspapers.

I looked at some very impressive Graduate programs for Journalism this summer, and may decide to apply to them this Fall.

I’m one of the Captains of the Men’s Varsity Tennis team, which I’ve been a part of during my four years here. We’re several weeks into our fall season, and have approximately twenty matches, as well as a trip to Orlando, Florida, scheduled for this coming Spring. I look forward to leading the team in our longtime quest to reach the conference playoffs.

After living in the un-airconditioned, oldest, mostly freshman-filled dorm on campus, I’ve upgraded my living situation as well. I’m living in a spacious, airy apartment on campus with three of my closest friends here. I enjoy having company again after living in a single room for the past two years.

I’ll also continue being a statistician for the Goucher Basketball teams, take photographs for several offices on campus, and complete several other odd jobs that I get asked to do here and there.

And I’m taking three interesting classes.

Life is grand!

Strategic default: Man walks away from his Baltimore rowhouse and the mortgage, joining the ranks of “strategic defaulters” – Baltimore Sun Video

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Although I didn’t shoot footage for this video myself, this was my last assignment a Multimedia Intern for The Baltimore Sun. I spent several days editing this footage from reporter Jamie SmithHopkins, who wrote about Wallace Farmer’s unique story. It can be read here in its entirety.

This was the most difficult yet most rewarding editing job I had during my time there. I’m proud of myself for making sense of over two hours of interview footage and condensing it down to a fluid short story.

Though I didn’t realize it then, I think the reason I’m so satisfied with this video is because, at the time I was working on it, I could relate to Mr. Farmer in a strange way: both of us were men walking away from something we loved. For him, it was a home that he hoped to spend many more years in.

For me, it was another incredible learning experience.

Under the guidance and expertise of the Multimedia department, I worked on numerous projects and had various responsibilities throughout the summer. Primarily, I shot, edited, and produced video and photographs for breaking stories in the news, features, sports, and arts sections of the newspaper. I conducted interviews and created and pitched story ideas to editors and reporters. Additionally, I updated the newspaper’s website with photos, videos, and multimedia slideshows.

I never felt like an intern. From day one, I was given significant responsibilities and assigned to cover newsworthy stories. I was included in news meetings and was always encouraged to contribute my thoughts.

I’m confident that the multimedia skills I learned will benefit me as I pursue a career in journalism. I was lucky to work alongside some of the best journalists in the business, and I’m thankful for all that I learned from them.

Most importantly, I thank my Mom and Dad, family, and friends. Without their love, support, and guidance, none of this would have been possible.

Thank you to Professor David Zurawik for helping me secure this internship, and for his inspirational teaching and unyielding encouragement and motivation.

Thank you to Mary Corey and Sam Davis for ensuring that I had an enjoyable and productive internship experience.

Thank you to the my Editor, Steve Sullivan, and the Multimedia Department, Chris Assaf, Kevin Richardson, and Leeann Adams, for showing me the ropes, breaking me in, giving me feedback and criticism, and involving me in their daily routines.

Thank you to my fellow interns Kirby Mills, Kate Klots, Gabby Siskind, Colin Stevens, and Kate Smith, whom I had the pleasure of getting to know, reporting with, and learning from.

And to everyone else who helped me along the way!