“The Badger Herald is an experiment.”

Anyone who has worked here will tell you these words are uttered around our office several times a day. But what does it truly mean to be an “experiment”?

To start, let me welcome you to the pages of The Badger Herald, the University of Wisconsin’s leading digital-first, fully independent, student-run news organization. We’ve served as the rebel voice of campus since 1969 and have no plans of changing that anytime soon.

This year, The Badger Herald experiment will take many forms. We’ve comfortably transitioned from a twice-weekly print product into a weekly, and with that under our belt, we’re prepared to take our next and bigger steps.

Our print product will continue to emphasize in-depth feature writing and our online content will bring you everything from breaking news to the best bathrooms on campus. As students and independent journalists, we will strive to bring you not only stories you will want to read, but stories that have impact.

The Badger Herald is more than just a newspaper. This year, we are making an active effort to connect with the campus and greater Madison community. We’ve formed partnerships with UW student organizations and Madison businesses. As a digital-first media organization, such partnerships are not just nice, but necessary. We’re lucky to keep former Managing Editor Briana Reilly on our staff in our newly-created community outreach coordinator position. Through this role, we will be able to connect with our community on a deeper level than just social media (though we will still be emphasizing and expanding our social media team this year).

In its 47th year, The Badger Herald will do more than just exist. We will strive to innovate, create and, of course, experiment. Our highly-skilled management team will help lead the Herald in this direction. Nina Kravinsky and Riley Vetterkind’s vast and diverse range of journalistic and professional experience will help bring this vision to life.

The Herald staff is growing, and with that, so is our hunger for excellence. We don’t measure this success in awards (though we have won a few over the years), we measure it in impact on our community. Last year, we started conversations about sexual assault and racial diversity on campus, just to name a couple. This year, we want to continue these conversations as well as bring new issues to light.

Whether it’s as a reader or contributor, join us as we continue our “experiment” this semester.

We invite any and all students who are interested in getting involved at the Herald to stop by our offices at 152 W. Johnson St. for one of our new members meetings Sept. 8, 15, 22 or 29 at 7 p.m.