On the record: A final letter from the editor

By Nicole Lafond

I’ve been recording reality since before I can remember.

It started as a hobby; I took notes during every sermon my father preached, I scribbled in my journal every night before bed, I wrote in the margins of my Lord of the Rings novels, I recorded class lessons and took notes at night to make sure I didn’t miss anything. Writing to remember has always been in my nature.

After graduating eighth grade, I remember coming home and sorting through the journals shoved under my bed, scouring for a blank page to embellish with the jitters of my young anticipation for high school. I wrote ferociously, as I often did, and eventually looked up to see my grandfather standing in the doorway, his eyes smiling.

“Nicole, you should be a journalist,” he said.

And from that moment on, I never wanted to be anything else.

Recording reality has always had its place in the fiber of my being, but as I sit here today on the verge of submitting my final edition of the GlimmerGlass as editor, I can’t even begin to convince myself that this is real. This year has been a rocky, transformative time of growth for this publication and I could not be more proud of the work my staff has done.

There is a theory in communication studies that comes from the sociocultural tradition called the Tenth Man Theory. Every institution, organization, company and university on this planet runs the risk of falling victim to a self-defeating ideology called GroupThink. When the desire for unanimity and harmony overrides a group’s motivation to assess all available plans of action,

GroupThink occurs. The organization’s primary goal then becomes consensus rather than good judgment and the group falls prey to a deadly trap that discourages diversity and smothers perspective.

It is the press’ job in every community to prevent GroupThink by playing the role of the Tenth Man. Every group needs an individual to challenge, ask questions, gage perspective and even play devil’s advocate. Because Olivet is such a special community, this task often proves to be challenging for the GlimmerGlass staff, but we firmly believe silence is deadly. And that is why we push and pester and praise because at the end of the day we want this community to be the best place it can be.

Olivet, I hope we have served you well this year.

And by serving you well I mean I hope at least one article in the GlimmerGlass made you angry. I hope you read something that pushed you to have a conversation about your thoughts on a topic presented. I hope you were able to laugh with us when we tricked you on April Fools and I hope you were able to mourn with us as we reported on the tornado tragedy in Washington, Ill. I hope we made you uncomfortable. I hope we informed you. And I hope we elicited a spark of deep community.

Because at the end of all things, the human experience is our only reality. I hope we were able to record that for you this year.

Thank you for reading. Never stop asking questions.

0 Comments

  1. Thank you, Nicole, for pushing us in a big way! You are going to do big things for the big God that we serve!

  2. Nicole, Congratulations on a wonderful, successful year. I have enjoyed this year of the Glimmer Glass so very much. Enjoy your exciting future!

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