After 29 Issues, CXLV Bids Farewell to the Newsroom

Senior Editors and Upper Management of CXLV stand in front of Samuel Phillips Hall.

This paper marks the first issue of The Phillipian, vol. CXLVI. As of January 27, all former members of vol. CXLV including Upper Management, Editors, and Managers have officially departed the Newsroom. 

As the first board to consistently meet in person since the beginning of the pandemic, CXLV’s Upper Management — a group of the highest board positions, including Editor in Chief — focused on strengthening the newsroom environment and restoring the quality of the paper’s editorial and digital content. 

Dorian Park Wang ’23, a former Managing Editor, commented on CXLV’s work on bringing The Phillipian out of its previous virtual state to being re-established as a weekly physical newspaper. Park Wang also mentioned feeling rewarded to be part of such an important presence on campus. 

“What our board did the best was taking The Phillipian from its ‘COVID[-19] state’ to being more of a presence back on campus. Through [my] time [at The Phillipian there was] a lot of hard work that takes so much out of you but, what it’s taking out of you, you’re putting it into something that’s bigger than yourself,” said Park Wang. 

Ethan Qi ’23, who was the Executive Editor of CXLV, reflected on the community that the newsroom and The Phillipian brought for him. He hopes that CXLVI can grow to appreciate the newsroom’s environment as he did. 

“The newsroom culture is really a community that you… can’t find anywhere else on campus. I think even when the work gets stressful and [board members go through] Upper Year and [through] all these different initiatives that they want to pursue, they remember why they started doing [The Phillipian] in the first place, and just try to keep [having] fun with it,” said Qi.

Aside from the editorial section of the paper, both former Managing Digital Editor Karen Wang ’23 and former Executive Digital Editor Mia Xiao ’23 described their goals of expanding The Phillipian’s digital presence, as well as their hopes for the paper’s digital end. 

“One thing I really wanted to do was to revitalize our Instagram, and I really worked hard to try to create more Instagram posts, and more initiatives, and I was really happy that we were able to pass 2,000 followers, which has always been one of our goals,” said Wang.

Xiao continued, “One of things that I had on my mind was to have [the] digital and paper [sections] be more combined, or to serve each other better. We were able to do that with a few of the breaking news reports, [but] I’m just hoping that the new board are able to do that more often.

Former Video Associate and current Executive Digital Editor Karen Wang ’24 shared similar sentiments as the previous Upper Management board. Wang described how one of her primary goals is to further the digital section and presence of the paper. 

“[A goal I have is to] increase the digital presence of The Phillipian because there are some sections that are notorious for being ‘irrelevant’ because they are digital sections, but I think that [they] provide a really good asset to the paper,” said Wang. 

Erin Kim ’23, another of the former Managing Editors, reminisced about the special projects and activities she had planned while on The Phillipian’s board. Kim noted some of the most notable ideas that came to fruition, as well as other collaborative efforts.

“I really wanted to do something for heritage and history months like Black History Month, AAPI Heritage Month, and Latine Legacy Month, and those were achieved. We were able to do investigative articles digging into the archives, Commentary article translations, campus event coverage, and features on various affinity groups. Another idea I had was doing crosswords for special events, which [Tina Zeng ’24] was actually able to make and lay out,” said Kim.

Outgoing Chief Financial Officer Isabella Alvarez ’23 also reflected on the progress she has made in diversifying the sources of income for The Phillipian and has begun giving business opportunities to smaller, people of color-owned businesses.

“Instead of [revenue coming from] large, white-owned, more male-dominated companies, I wanted to [look towards] more small businesses [and] people of color-owned businesses. So I think that was my main goal, and I can definitely say that it was accomplished. I’m so proud of all the work we did,” said Alvarez. 

Patricia Tran ’24, Executive Editor and former Sports Associate, spoke on her goal to implement collaboration between different sections of The Phillipian for articles, especially sections who normally work in conjunction together. 

“Definitely one of my goals is to encourage more cross-section collaboration, just because on The Phillipian some sections work together very often, like Sports and Photo, Commentary and Illustration, and News and Graphics,” said Tran. 

A former Commentary Associate Jonathan Ji ’24, now one of the Managing Editors, also expressed his enthusiasm about writing editorials and organizing the different sections of The Phillipian on a week-to-week basis. 

“What I’m most excited about [as a] Managing Editor is facilitating and writing editorials each week. I applied for the position particularly because I was interested in working on the editorial, and I think that’s probably what I’m most excited about. Besides that, [I am excited about] the general management of the paper,” said Ji. 

Accordingly, Vera Zhang ’24, the other inaugural Managing Editor for CXLVI, spoke on her goals for the visual sections –– Graphics, Illustration, and Video –– to start to produce more standalone content. Zhang feels like this would broaden the scope of content and opportunities in The Phillipian.

“Overall, my goal is for the visual sections to be more consistent and more independent in the way where they’re not always supplementary to articles. For example, Illustration can make their own comics that are quick blurbs of what actual articles are, and Video can post more BuzzFeed-esque videos, which they used to do,” said Zhang.

Michael Ma ’24, a former Business Manager and the new Chief Financial Officer, outlined his long-term goals for The Phillipian to expand the impact of the newspaper, business-wise. Ma specifically noted upcoming projects for the distribution of the paper and the possibility of having newspaper stands on campus.

“I hope to bring The Phillipian back to prior levels of engagement [as] a super big deal on campus. First off, I plan on making distribution more smooth and streamlined. We’ve started distributing in the mornings. I also want to get distribution rocks and maybe even extend distribution beyond Andover,” said Ma. 

CXLVI Editor in Chief (EIC), Sarah Hassanein ’24, who previously assumed the role of an Arts Associate, described her upcoming excitement for her new position. In the tenure of this year’s board, Hassanein hopes to commence initiatives surrounding long-term articles and encourage cross-section collaboration. 

“My biggest goal for The Phillipian is just to elevate the paper in any way I can… I would love each section to do a long-term article and maybe collaborate with another section. I just want to give a big thank you to Elyse [Goncalves ’23] because she’s left an incredible paper, the environment, and the precedent she’s set in the newsroom are incredible… Obviously, EIC is very daunting; I know it’s going to be a lot of work, but I feel like I’m ready for it,” said Hassanein. 

Outgoing Editor in Chief Goncalves reflected on the legacy and expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to be a part of The Phillipian. Now one of many former Editors in Chief, Goncalves is thankful for the work her board did to continue elevating the newspaper. 

“A love for this paper is what drives productive journalism and every [new UM member] has the ability to effect change, take on initiatives. My name is [now one] in a list of 146 other names of Editors in Chief in the past, and I think that the legacy that I want to leave is to be one of those names. To have had some, just a small part, of making The Phillipian what it is today,” said Goncalves.