After reading “Speak Up” from Thursday’s Hurricane, I decided that I had heard and seen enough. As editor in chief of the Ibis yearbook here at UM, my staff and I work arduously to try to get as many people as possible in the yearbook – sometimes against their own will, but always for their own good. Never have I been so outraged as I was to read about students blatantly disregarding the yearbook as if it were a log worth using for firewood. As such, I want to address this general apathy with a few comments.
To those of you out there who feel that the yearbook is not a “priority,” I strongly encourage you to stop by our office in the University Center and thumb through our 82 volumes, dating back to the original Ibis that documented the 1926-1927 academic year. Once you do so, you’ll discover that the Ibis predates most of the traditions that we currently hold dear here at UM, with the exception of football and Iron Arrow. That’s right folks: the yearbook is older than homecoming, “I-Week,” FEC, UBS, ACS, SAFAC, COSO, the “U,” the Rathskeller, Sebastian and even The Miami Hurricane. Clearly, Bowman Foster Ashe himself prioritized the creation of a permanent record of our academic years here at UM or the yearbook would have been created much later. The point is, history doesn’t wait for us; it will forget us just as easily as we’ll forget our professors and acquaintances in as little as three or four years.
The Ibis should be a celebrated tradition here, just like the others I listed above. Yearbooks are tools to reminisce – a method by which to laugh and cry as we recount our college years and become nostalgic. Whether three months or three decades after graduation, that moment will arrive. The Ibis is a permanent piece of UM that can never be taken away; try getting your Facebook to accomplish that! Just as quickly as we update our status, our photos could be untagged or our friend request denied. Yearbooks never forget or erase. Always remember that.
And so, in parting, I have little sympathy or patience for those who insist they are true Canes at heart but dismiss the Ibis as another assignment heading for the recycling bin. I also have little tolerance for students who moan about a $25 sitting fee for senior portraits but have no problem blowing multiples of that amount on drinks in one night to forget why they spent it. The truth is that the Ibis is provided free of cost to all undergraduates as part of the student activity fee, and the only cost associated with the yearbook whatsoever is $25 to secure yourself in your senior book. Underclassmen snap their portraits for free. Let’s face it: $25 over four years is not a lot of money. Take that into perspective the next time you see the flashes in the UC and tell yourself that you’re too cool to be pictured in our school’s book of record.
P.S. Senior portraits end Thursday, don’t forget.
– Chris Rackliffe
Editor in Chief