When I joined Michigan in Color as a Senior Editor, I didn’t know that I would find a home. I have found some of my closest friends, change agents, and accountability partners in this platform. Over time, I have learned that we are more than a newspaper. We are a catalyst, a moment, to both uplift and preserve the truths of students of color. I feel immense pride in being a part of an organization that has contributed to over one hundred years of generational knowledge, and I feel even more proud as Michigan in Color goes into its fifth year of preserving the voices and experiences of people of color on campus. It is evident that our impact has exceeded the boundaries of our campus and has inspired other universities, such as UC Berkeley, to establish their own sections for students of color.
It is with great honor and elation that I present my voice as an empowered, happy, confident Black Woman, shredded of the insecurity that made my voice tremble years ago. I have found great solace and spiritual healing through the power of words and truth telling. In a world where women of color, and Black women especially, are subject to extreme levels of hypervisibility and systemic silencing, Michigan in Color has been a space for me to reclaim my visibility and agency and to define who I am and what I stand for. It’s been a platform that is unique in its simultaneous embrace of PoC intellectuality and authenticity. Just as I have developed my confidence as a Black female scholar, I have gained so much from being privileged to the insights and lessons that other students have shared through our platform.
I am unsure if I think of myself as a writer, nor am I sure if I think of myself as a journalist. However, in a time period where journalism is showded in falsehood and malice and when PoC voices are systemically silenced and sidelined, I know that a platform such as ours is critical.
I give credit to MiC for so much of my growth and abundance of opportunity. I have traveled to Washington, D.C. and explored the roots of my African-American heritage. I have critically analyzed film representation, and I have joined other student organizations in community and fellowship. Most importantly, MiC has given me new friends and a close-knit community of activists and change-agents who have held me accountable to expanding my capacity for empathy across identity intersections. I will forever be grateful for this experience, and I look forward to furthering the mission and potential of our publication.
It is within the pages of a campus newspaper that I offer a platform of refuge — a platform to tell your story amongst the countless pages and think-pieces that are trying to tell it for you. I offer a space grounded in radical self-love and belief in the power of storytelling and words, a place to unlearn and unpack generations worth of taught self-hate and identity dissonance. I welcome you to write your truth, one word at a time.