When students find themselves on the frontlines of national issues and officials promise to shake up GW for better or for worse, The Hatchet’s editorial board springs into action to respond to the news – what happened, and why should you care about it?
As we continue to cover topics big and small this year, we wanted to outline what we do and who we are. The editorial board meets each week to discuss topics relevant to GW that might happen on campus, around D.C. or across the country. Whether the news breaks in The Hatchet or other publications, opinions editor Ethan Benn and contributing opinions editor Riley Goodfellow will choose a topic for that week’s staff editorial. After discussion and debate, the editorial board’s collective views form the basis of the staff editorial, which Benn and Goodfellow write as The Hatchet’s official stance.
So what do we believe? Since May this year, we’ve demanded the University declare its support for abortion rights, asked officials to help students make sense of financial aid, endorsed a candidate in D.C.’s mayoral election, introduced freshmen to #OnlyAtGW moments and outlined the values we’re looking for in its next leader.
Our mission isn’t to tell you what to think – it’s to tell you what to think about. Each weekly staff editorial is meant to inform our readers, advocate for their rights and challenge their beliefs. We don’t hesitate to outline the policies and programs we think are necessary for GW’s community, and we’re not afraid of holding officials accountable for their actions.
Eight members of The Hatchet’s staff are on this volume’s editorial board. Our various backgrounds and roles allow us to represent The Hatchet.
Meet the members of the editorial board:
Ethan Benn, a junior from Georgia majoring in journalism and mass communication, is the opinions editor. He runs the editorial board’s weekly meetings and co-writes the staff editorial. He focuses on how urban planning, public transportation and politics intersect to affect our lives.
Riley Goodfellow, a sophomore from California majoring in political science, is the contributing opinions editor. They co-write the staff editorial and help guide the weekly discussion. They often write about the LGBTQ+ community and reproductive justice.
Zachary Bestwick, a junior from the Carolinas majoring in political science, is a research assistant and opinions writer. He hopes to address issues that affect students’ academic experiences and their daily interactions with GW.
Nuria Diaz, a junior from Puerto Rico majoring in journalism and mass communication, is the sports editor. She is interested in the legacy of colonialism in the Caribbean, Spanish language misinformation and urban sustainability.
Jaden DiMauro, a junior from Connecticut majoring in English, is the copy editor. Coming from a household with two moms, he is deeply passionate about LGBTQ+ rights and focuses on issues like sustainability and ethical consumption.
Clara Duhon, a senior from New Jersey majoring in anthropology and international affairs, is the culture editor. She is passionate about uplifting the voices of marginalized communities through various forms of media and advocating for environmental justice.
Grace Miller, a junior from Virginia majoring in English, is the design editor. She is deeply passionate about environmentalism, gender equity and how the University should use its funding to better support students.
Ethan Valliath, a sophomore from New Jersey majoring in international affairs, is the contributing social media director. Alongside advocating for mental health awareness, he aims to address sustainability, healthcare and racial equity on campus.
Jarrod Wardwell, the editor in chief, sits in on our meetings and edits the staff editorial but does not offer his opinion. The editorial board also functions independently from the newsroom – they report the news separate from our discussions, and we discuss its importance without covering it firsthand.
This year’s editorial board features members from various walks of life, and our position allows us to speak on behalf of students like us. Still, we know we don’t represent the entire student body, which is why we aim to consider as many students’ identities, experiences and opinions as possible in our discussions. If that means taking unorthodox or controversial stances, we’ll take them. But if, or when, we get something wrong, we’ll acknowledge and correct our mistakes. When we receive new information or the story changes, we’ll update our views accordingly – previous editorial boards have retracted stances and rescinded endorsements, too.
We aren’t just the editorial board – we’re your editorial board, engaging in commentary and advocacy that’s relevant to our readers and meant to make them think about their community. If you disagree with us on a particular issue, we encourage you to either write a letter to the editor or an op-ed.
The Hatchet is an institution in and of itself, and we are proud of the contributions we have already made to this historic paper. Our platform gives us privilege and power, and we intend to use it to the fullest. For you and for ourselves, Volume 119’s editorial board looks forward to making sense of the news and advocating for change.
The editorial board consists of Hatchet staff members and operates separately from the newsroom. This week’s staff editorial was written by Opinions Editor Ethan Benn and Contributing Opinions Editor Riley Goodfellow, based on discussions with Research Assistant Zachary Bestwick, Sports Editor Nuria Diaz, Copy Editor Jaden DiMauro, Culture Editor Clara Duhon, Design Editor Grace Miller and Contributing Social Media Director Ethan Valliath.