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Editorial 321: We've made it to the end of term!

We’ve made it to the end of term! Thank you to our many readers (mainly our families, housemates, and Barry) for reading our editorials every fortnight - we hope they have been as insightful as we intend them to be.

We have had a great term. Over the summer, we began the year by reporting on exclusives such as the release of Bristol’s animal experimentation figures and Waverley House failing Grenfell-style fire tests.

This academic year has seen other big stories such as the University’s investment of £1 million into wellbeing services, the protest at a talk by an Israeli diplomat, a high-profile journalist’s refusal to talk at the university due to Safe Space policies, Thekla being under threat, and even the fire at well-loved takeaway, the Grecian.

Investigations have included the University controversially changing their fee refund policy, the discovery that students from ‘aspiring’ schools at Bristol do just as well as students from other schools, solid evidence that Stoke Bishop halls are home to a significant proportion of private school students, and a look into student house burglaries.

We have also made some changes this term. You may have noticed that our front page, and many other pages in the paper, have started to feature more student photography and illustrations.

We have also had an incredible response from new writers, and every section has benefitted from the increasing involvement of students across all year groups and degrees - which you can see in our decision to include each writers’ year and course in their by-line. If you are interested, please do get involved next year- we would love to have you!

Included in these sections is Wellbeing, who is enjoying three editors, rather than two, and 2-3 pages per issue compared to the one from last year. The editors have a growing relationship with their large base of writers.

The two of us are also adding a new feature to this editorial page - the Best of Bristol Media. Here, we will showcase our favourite piece of journalism by our fellow media societies. Over the past fortnight, we have particularly enjoyed UBTV’s coverage of the Reclaim the Night movement - read more in the blue box!

Perhaps the biggest piece of news this term (for us, anyway) was our win of the Best Publication in the South of England at the Student Publication Association (SPA) regional awards. Members of our team also won Best Impact and Best Journalist. This has only fuelled our motivation to take these changes further and take a shot at nationals.

We really enjoyed putting this issue together. It includes a (close) look at RAG’s new naked calendar, new library and campus plans, Reclaim the Night, a look into punishments for drug offences in Bristol’s halls, and the results of the Faculty of Health’s wellbeing survey.

Over the past couple of weeks, we have been really interested to see what the student body think about issues such as student housing and the Vice-Chancellor’s salary. The results of both surveys are on pages 3 and 4 respectively.

Wellbeing is always on our minds at Bristol and at Epigram. Make sure you give yourself some time off this Christmas to relax and don’t overdo the preparation for and worrying about January essays and exams. It’s easy to overlook the work that needs to be done on yourself when all you’re thinking about is the work you have to do for your degree - they’re as important as each other (if not weighted the other way around...)

The two of us will also be taking a break this Christmas, but we’ll be back in full swing after exams to deliver you more of your favourite Bristol publication.

2018 is a big year for Epigram as we will be celebrating our 30th anniversary. Keep your eyes out for our features, events and collaborations to mark our journey so far...

Until then, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from everyone at Epigram!

Originally published in Epigram 321.

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