A new chapter for Horizon student media


Sam Haney

Check out the number of online-only IUS students in early 2022. The percentage was unchanged in fall 2022.

Lydia Lum

A responsible faculty adviser usually doesn’t appear on these digital pages.


A responsible faculty adviser usually keeps the staff and their work front and center. The adviser stays in the background. I have done all that.

But because staffing was gutted at Horizon student media, I could not stay among the shadows anymore. Nor could I wait for more high school seniors to choose IUS. This media organization could not survive unless I acted with a sense of urgency.

That became my biggest responsibility.

Welcome to this new chapter.

For the first time in perhaps two years, this all-new staff has broken into double digits.

How did it happen?

My recruiting went beyond journalism majors and minors. It went beyond talking to only students. I spoke with academic advisers so they would better understand how a student-led organization could, in fact, run a serious academic course. By pursuing stories, creating content and exploring “free expression,” the staff sharpens its skills in responsible storytelling, media ethics, time management, decision-making, asserting themselves and teamwork.

Our production course “Writing for Mass Media” is now a hybrid modality for reasons unrelated to COVID-19. Why? Growing numbers of IUS students are taking only online courses. Last fall, it was 27% of 3,670 students, and the percentage was the same for spring 2022. More of you are working full-time while juggling classes. More of you live outside the traditional IUS service area. You’re just as likely to live in Seymour, Madison or Tell City as you are in Clarksville, Louisville, Jeffersonville or New Albany. Why should your physical address factor into whether you can be a Horizon staff member?

So we now have an asynchronous path in this course that runs alongside the in-person path that still convenes on campus twice weekly. We are incorporating and including staff who, without the online option, could not participate as directly and actively as they will in this course beginning in January. My thanks to everyone who helped make this happen.

It’s time for me to slip back into the shadows to support the staff in their work.

The new chapter begins.