TOM PLATE WRITES – Who and what is an Asia Media Staffer?
Pictured in the photos within this post are most of the staff members of Asia Media after a couple Tuesday staff meetings. By this weekend (May 10-11), more than half of them will have received their undergraduate degree and will be starting the rest of their life. LMU will miss them (all of these, for sure), and perhaps in time some if not all of them will begin to miss us. Maybe even Asia Media, LMU’s centerpiece for undergraduate interest in international affairs and Asia, especially.
They have been writing about Singapore and China and Bangladesh and Thailand and every other which place that is the most populous region on the face of the earth. And while sometimes they have focused on issues rather quaint, neither have they ducked issues large, from revolution to repression. They have been writing articles for public positing regularly for two or even three years.
Yes, some have taken up the Asia Media mantle for course credit; but most have been involved for reasons of … what? The desire to learn about the World Out There? To stretch their sophistication across a vast ocean and into the deepest of ancient and foreign cultures? The need to get out of their own skin and into others’? Or maybe the enticement was just the free lunch every Tuesday and the exposure to the Really Corny Jokes of the old prof who was editor in chief. Who knows?
But almost all students who started on the Asia Media journey stayed with it, struck doggedly with it, improved their ability to mass-communicate in print and understand other perspectives. Our drop-out rate was under 10%. The parents of these students – and you know who you are – should be damn proud. The staff of Asia Media is nothing other than (and this must be said) exceptional.