UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | June 18, 2024

Angel Wood Know what it takes to be an editor-in-chief

From left, Lexy Borgogno, a sophomore media studies major from Tooele, and Angel Wood, a senior media studies major from Surprise, Arizona, stand on a beach in La Jolla, California after attending a journalism conference. Borgogno will be following after Wood’s footsteps in the role of editor-in-chief of Sun News Daily for the 2024-2025 academic school year. Angel Wood | Sun News Daily

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Question: What does it take to be an editor-in-chief?

Dear Lexy

If there is one thing I am almost an expert about, it’s how to be an editor-in-chief of a news organization. I’ve spent a full year watching someone else in the role and then a year learning the role myself. Now as I move on from the EIC position, I know Sun News Daily is in good hands with someone fully capable of fulfilling the responsibilities as the head of our news organization. 

An EIC has many tasks including editing everything that will be published, teaching the staff different media principles, and standing up for the staff when others may want to tear it down. The most important role an EIC has is leading the staff in being “The Voice Of Utah Tech.”

You are a leader and others will look up to you more than you know as you guide the staff throughout the year. When times get tough, sources don’t respond or others turn against Sun News, the staff will look to you for strength, answers and courage to continue on the powerful path of student journalism. 

As EIC, you will need to have courage. The life of an EIC is far from easy, and there will be times when you feel like quitting. You will need to have the courage to not only encourage others to never give up but to stand as an example of perseverance yourself. 

You will also need to be adaptive. Things will not always go your way or the staff’s way. Sources won’t always get back, stories won’t always work out, and people won’t always stay on Sun News. But, there is always another way to do things, so ensure your vision is not blurred by a single option. Somehow, things have a way of working themselves out, so just go with the flow and don’t forget that everything happens for a reason. 

On top of being positive, hardworking, inclusive and many other things, knowing how to effectively communicate will bring you much success as EIC. Communication is the foundation of everything we do as student journalists, so never silence yourself when it comes to being honest.

Leave those edits even if they may seem harsh. Have those hard conversations even if they may seem pointless. Stand up for yourself to others even when it may seem scary. Saying what you need to say is far better than keeping it to yourself and never seeing change. 

Know that it’s OK to delegate. That’s why you have a staff because as much as we go-getters want to do it all, we can’t. As mentioned before, the role of EIC is not easy and will come with many challenges and bumps in the road, but your staff is here to support you and keep you on the road to success. You don’t have to do everything on your own, so ask for help when you need it. 

Just a heads up but 3 a.m. will be your new bedtime and a planner will become your best friend. The bulk of your life going forward will be related to Sun News, so having and keeping good time management skills will be the best thing you can do for yourself and for Sun News.  

Although being EIC will not be smooth sailing, you will see all the rewards that come from holding this position. Being EIC will teach you more about who you are and who you want to be. It will bless you with some of the strongest relationships you’ll ever have with staff members, professors and other staff and faculty at the university. It will teach you more than you’d ever thought you’d know about being a leader and a student journalist. The blood, sweat and tears will all be worth it at the end of the day.

Lastly, one thing I’ve come to realize is that Sun News does not make you. You make Sun News. Toward the beginning of my leadership in the position, I put too much of my worth on Sun News. The position defined me and the job overcame me. I also found myself comparing myself to others who had come before me, thinking that I was not good enough to be EIC. 

You are what will make Sun News so great and so credible and so rewarding. Although it’s great to learn from those who have come before you as EIC, know that it’s OK to do your own things, make your own rules and lead in the way you feel inspired to. You were chosen for the position because you are Lexy Borgogno, so don’t forget who you are, and you will make Sun News amazing. 

Lexy, you are going to do so many amazing things and leave behind a legacy that won’t ever be forgotten. As EIC, you are not just a leader; you are the guiding light of Sun News Daily, so let that light shine as you continue blazing your trail.

Sincerely, 

Angel Wood

If you are seeking advice on something, message me on Instagram at @angel.utahtech.