The Overlook Journal produces a weekly online paper that covers topics ranging from school news to popular culture to politics, both on a local and global scale since the school is an international school. A reflection of Thornton-Donovan School, past and present, this independent, student-run organization works tirelessly to produce an eclectic collection of student work.
I am proud to moderate such a diverse paper that truly captures the “globally engaged” mantra of T-D. While the students who participate might not realize it, they are performing a duty to their school that cannot be understated. They chronicle the interests of their classmates and the events they participate and, in the process, provide readers with insight into the community T-D fosters. It is their paper.
When I first came to T-D in 2010, the newspaper was a Microsoft Publisher-created mess that was produced one-to-two times per year. It lacked any content worth reading and it was the product of laziness and indifference. That all changed when ONE student with a vision and the initiative to enact it took the reigns.
For two years, “Saint” Sederick Dawkins ‘12 stewarded The Overlook Journal through a golden age of sorts. He set the standard for the paper, whether it was through his tireless work with writers or the nights spent putting together layout when his designer abruptly quit on him (twice). T-D has never seen a student so dedicated to so many different causes, whether it was his local church, Habitat for Humanity, or The Overlook Journal.
The current staff and any future staffs will have to pave their own way and blaze their own trail through the jungle that is a school newspaper. Don’t be afraid of the unknown. Embrace it. As Frost says, “I took the road less traveled by,/And that has made all the difference.”
See my initial letter to the current staff below, and again check out Overlookjournal.com to see the phenomenal work the students are doing.
Welcome to the 2017-2018 school year, returning and new Overlook Journal members!
I want to start out by commending last year’s staff on their most prolific year to date. Not only did the amount of pieces produced increase, but the quality of work did as well. There was much to be proud of, and the staff on the whole deserves the plaudits for a job well done.
With that said, last year is over. Now, as we begin a new school year once again under the guidance of Editor-in-Chief Quincy Campbell ’19, we look forward to putting together a staff of dedicated and diligent student writers and editors.
Students, however, do not have to be the best in either of these fields, and they most certainly do not have to seek a career in journalism. Instead, we desire those who are interested in chronicling the myriad events of the T-D experience in a creative manner. Moreover, we are looking for diverse and engaging perspectives from anyone who wants to be involved in the production process – copy-editors and artists, don’t be shy. Remember that people do actually read and comment on the Overlook Journal, and, for some, this is their only remaining connection to T-D.
Based on what was achieved last year, the expectations have increased. That means more consistent coverage of T-D events across the board, whether it be athletics, clubs, new teachers, or travel – among other endeavors. That also means the production of one-to-two physical papers depending on the money available/funds raised. Finally, and most importantly, Quincy has formed a partnership with WVOX that will lead to student journalists participating in a weekly, student-interest segment.
I encourage any interested student to speak to Quincy about possible roles at The Overlook Journal. Looking forward to another bountiful and rewarding year, I believe the possibilities are boundless.
The Overlook Journal Moderator
Middle School English Teacher