Hey, welcome back. Now, before you start looking at those outlines and schedules, I’d like to introduce you to my new roster. Yes, the Navigator has experienced a shift and I am pleased to announce that the masthead is no longer an all-girls party (excluding web). This newspaper completely benefitted from having a woman-dominated staff for the last seven issues, and we have grown to be a strong, well-oiled machine, writing, editing, designing, and printing every two weeks.

However, as a university campus paper, things change all the time. The shifting staff affects the content each year, and I look forward to what our new editors can bring to the 24 pages and brand new website for the next seven issues.

First, I’d like to introduce thenav.ca, a trusted source for every story we cover, along with videos, and an interactive calendar. While this site has been around for a while now, it has recently gone under the knife, getting a new face. We want to make sure our site is on par (or surpassing) the kinds of news sites you already browse, including our competition campus papers. Check it out, and let us know what you think on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @theNav_VIU.

Second, the web surgeon/page-filler extraordinaire Antony Stevens will be joining the Nav again, this time taking on two jobs as he completes his Creative Writing degree. Stevens will be Associate Editor, writing an editorial with me, finding contributors (that could be you), and filling our centrefold (spread) with timely, interesting, and researched features. Check out his first spread: “New Years in Nanaimo.” Also check out Stevens’ brand-spankin’-new video game review website clipthrough.com.

Third, we unfortunately had to say goodbye (more like see you soon) to Lys Morton, a friend, and wonderful Arts Editor. In his place, the Nav welcomes back Brendan Barlow, former Social Media Producer for the newspaper’s volume 45. Barlow brings insight into movies, music and the arts with his experience reviewing horror on his blog barleydoeshorror. com. This issue, Barlow will provide his list of the best of 2015, and a preview of what is to come in 2016, along with my article on Ryan Gullen, bassist of The Sheepdogs, a rock band from Saskatchewan, coming to Nanaimo with their new album Future Nostalgia on February 21.

Lastly, I want to introduce you to my girls. My irreplaceable, wonderfully-talented remaining staff with whom I could not publish without. Kaytee, Emily, and Avery—my Queen and her minion—who tirelessly create the cover and spread, and place each story perfectly; Catherine and Natalie, aka Cat and Nat, who have embraced the challenge of writing news and sports with curiosity and vigour. Kelly, the yin to my yang, keeping this newspaper so unbelievably free of mistakes, taking over the calendar, and editing for hours to make sure our future portfolios shine. Lori, without whose help, none of the above would be possibly done by 5 p.m.; and Megan, who has opened the Navigator to the increasingly important component of journalism in social media.

There you have it. We are small, but mighty. Stay tuned to our Facebook for details on a giveaway for tickets to The Sheepdogs in concert, and for the Maclean’s university issue, where our very own Natalie Gates will be featured, giving incoming students the Inside Scoop across the country.

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