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Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Opinion | Columns

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OPINION  |  COLUMNS

A Day of Gratitude

We are declaring Wednesday, October 12, to be a Day of Gratitude. On that day, we are acknowledging and thanking every UF student, faculty and staff member for their work in overcoming the challenges of the pandemic.


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UF Top 5 Ranking – What's Next?

No university has ever broken into that top-five ranking and stayed there for two consecutive years, until last month, when UF was ranked among the top five for the second year in a row.  Berkeley and UCLA are tied for first, Michigan and Virginia tied for third, and UF and UNC are tied for fifth.  


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Vote like your life depends on it — because it does

Florida’s current abortion ban only prohibits abortions after 15 weeks, but make no mistake, the Florida Republican Party will work for a complete ban. They’re hoping you won’t pay attention. They’re counting on you doubting that the worst can happen. But pay attention, because it very well might. If Florida Republicans win big in November, they will double down on denying your right of bodily autonomy the first chance they get. 


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Change Party: Moving UF forward, together

Our Student Government and our elections are supposed to reflect the interests of the entire UF student body, no matter who you are. Unfortunately, there has been persistent misallocation of student funding, prioritizing a slim number of interests. The inequitable distribution of our student budget was most recently manifested in the recruitment of Accent speaker Josh Richards for $60,000. 


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The need for liberation in UF SG

Our university and our democracy is under attack. On a broad scale, assaults on our academic freedom by Tallahassee have gone unchecked by the UF Board of Trustees,  creating an atmosphere of fear and censorship. 


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Grappling with imposter syndrome at a top five university

Earning the title of a top-five public university last year, UF has become a space for some of the nation’s most gifted individuals — something that often prompts students to go the extra mile when doubting their own skills. Questions of academic ability often become questions of belonging, with a single less-than-superior grade housing the potential to make students worry about whether they deserve to have a spot here. 


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Move-in and a welcome for the Fall

A shout-out of gratitude and admiration to all the staff and students who this past week welcomed our new students into residence and dining halls with cheerfulness and effectiveness, even in the heat and rain of August in Gainesville.


Julia Coin, a 21-year-old former Editor-in-Chief of The Independent Florida Alligator, preps for her final semester on staff at a Midtown Bar earlier this summer.
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More than enough

The newsroom’s soda-spotted carpets, crumb-ridden couch and nerd-infested nooks somehow kept my eyes bright as the rest of the city dimmed.


Heather Bushman, Julia Coin and Ryan Haley served as The Alligator's Big 3 for Summer 2022.
OPINION  |  COLUMNS

What I saw in the mirror

Pressure strips you down until there’s nothing left but who you are, deepest inside, and shoves a mirror in your eyes. Somewhere in all the split-second decisions and time on the clock, that mirror made its way to me.


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Part of history

The Alligator newsroom is lined with its history.  The best issues, framed, hang over editors’ desks. The sagging couch where I nestled for the past 16 print nights seems pulled out of an estate sale, or an abandoned frat house. Closets contain stacks of our recent issues and proud collections of novels written by Alligator alum.


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Gambling with imposter syndrome

I’ve been obsessed with words for as long as I can remember. The way they can make you feel, what art you can create or how they shape you.  And I love words, for I grew up having trouble arranging them in my speech the way I could on paper. So I gobbled them when I could, whether that was reading or writing elementary books before I understood what world I lived in. 


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An unexpected second home

I had joined The Alligator Summer 2020 as a transfer student, about four months after the onset of the pandemic. As a digital news assistant, I reported remotely from my Miami home, and my interactions consisted strictly of text and video calls over Zoom. It wasn’t until I became a features and investigations editor in January that I began to feel the sense of community that a true newsroom fosters. I began to see The Alligator as a second home.


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