Welcome back — or for those of you who are new to the University, just welcome.

The media often takes hits for being more guarded than the organizations they cover. We strive not to be like that. We are a newspaper run by students for students, and we try to be as transparent as possible during that mission.

As the new school year kicks off, I wanted to take the opportunity to explain what The Michigan Daily is and how we are here to serve you.

Who we are:

Since 1890, the Daily has been the largest newspaper on campus. For all 119 of those years, it has been managed and edited exclusively by students. The University doesn’t have any say about what we print or who works for us, and we don’t receive financial help from the University, student fees or partisan foundations.

In essence, we are your newspaper.

What our mission is:

We are here to make sure you get the most out of your campus experience.

In the most basic sense, that means letting you know what is going on at the University and in Ann Arbor and telling the stories that matter. But it also means digging deeper — to make sure your tuition is not wasted, to ensure that University and city administrators pay attention to your interests, to protect the quality of your education and to expose how the decisions that affect you are made. We want to be your forum to express your problems, concerns and opinions.

We strive to do all of that in the most fair, accurate and objective way possible.

When we stray from that mission:

Call us out for it.

For the same reasons we hold other campus institutions accountable for their actions, we want you to hold us accountable.

To do that, we need your help. When we make a mistake, send us a correction at corrections@michigandaily.com. When you think there is more to be said, send us a letter at tothedaily@umich.edu or arrange for a longer viewpoint by e-mailing opinion@michigandaily.com. When you just want to give me an earful, write me at graca@michigandaily.com or call me at 734-647-3336.

We know we make mistakes. We try to minimize those mistakes, correct them when they happen and make sure we tell you about them when we do. You can find a list of corrections every day on Page 2. You can also read more about the Daily’s successes and failures on our blog The Editor’s Page.

How you can help us:

Remember that this is your newspaper. If you think we are running it into the ground, you can single-handedly change it. Any student — journalism experience or not — is welcome to join our staff. You can get more information by visiting michigandaily.com/join-us, stopping by our offices at 420 Maynard St or attending one of our informational meetings at the following times:

• Today, Sept. 8 at 8 p.m.
• Wednesday, Sept. 9 at 8 p.m.
• Sunday, Sept. 13 at 6 p.m.
• Monday, Sept. 14 at 8 p.m.

You can also suggest a story to us anytime by e-mailing news@michigandaily.com or calling the newsroom at 734-763-2459. We can’t be everywhere at once, so we need your help to tell us where you think we should be.

Please take me up on these things. The Michigan Daily is here for all of us. It can’t be a quality resource unless readers, writers and editors all take on their share of the responsibility.

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