Editorial: We’re still inside, but sun provides hope for the future

By Drew Lawson, Sports Editor

As I sat down to write my weekly editorial column, I realized how strange it was that I was staring out the window into the Yakima Valley (where I did not grow up) while attempting to co-manage a student newspaper from behind a computer screen. 

These are confusing times. At least the weather is good. 

I’m in a significantly better mood when the sun is out, and the recent string of favorable weather, coupled with the fact that Washington Governor Jay Inslee’s “Stay Home, Stay Healthy” order seems to be working, is definitely giving me hope that better days are ahead. 

I’m also encouraged by the fact that we at The Easterner are putting out more digital content than ever before as the world continues virtually. It’s a far cry from where our web presence was in fall quarter. Here’s an update on what we put out this week. 

ASEWU primaries began this week, and News Editor Randle Kinswa has a rundown of all the candidates running for various positions. Kinswa also has a short story on the biggest news of the week thus far: EWU has canceled in-person commencement. 

I, your trusty-rusty sports editor, wrote a feature on senior spring athletes, where they were when they found out their seasons were canceled and whether they intend to return to EWU for another year. 

Copy Editor Lauren Reichenbach gives a supremely important lesson to all of us on how to properly wash our hands. I cynically didn’t think I could actually learn something from that article, but what do you know, I did. The power of good reporting. 

News reporter Star Dragon is continuing to follow the timeline of events amidst the COVID-19 crisis. That update will come every Thursday. 

Arts and features reporter Karlee Van De Venter brings some good news with a feature on EWU’s Giving Joy Day, which raised over $270,000 for the EWU Student Emergency Fund. 

Reporter Aaron Hutchinson shares that EWU was forced to lay off most of its student employees that hold on-campus jobs. Hutchinson also has a feature on PLUS tutoring and the services they’re continuing to provide virtually. 

Most of us hadn’t even heard of Zoom before COVID-19 hit the U.S. of A., but now it’s a rather important feature for online classes. Reporter Ben Blakney has a feature asking EWU professors and students about their experience with Zoom thus far. 

Reporter Emily Driskel hits the ground running with her debut story on what life is like for the few students left in EWU’s dorms. Driskel is tackling the student life beat and will continue to have stories on the experiences EWU students far and wide are having. 

Our weekly entertainment column kicked off with Van De Venter’s overview of music albums to listen to during quarantine. Co-managing editor/multimedia director Malati Powell provided the graphics for that column. We’re moving that column to a Friday publish date. This week, stay tuned for Reichenbach’s article on the epidemic sweeping the nation known as Netflix’s “Tiger King.”

I continue to be proud of the work that our staff is putting forth each week. Everyone is working their tails off as we share a common mission of informing the EWU community amidst this crisis. Keep an eye on our website. You never know what’s coming next.