Layers was made to fulfill a unique gap in the news, left by the space between The Weekly Phoenix and local Lakeland news sources. The Weekly Phoenix is a school newsletter that’s purely informational. The campus is far from the city of Lakeland, so local news doesn’t have the time or interest to seek or speak to the students or faculty of this campus, excluding the occasionally exceptional research discovery or legal battle. What’s important is what lies in the middle – a campus comprised of students with unique and surprisingly varied perspectives, today’s observers and tomorrow’s doers. Layers is for them – for us. Student news that works for students, by students. We are independent – free and driven to write, portray, express, criticize, scrutinize.

When I write, edit, or take photos, I keep this in mind. The students of Florida Poly have a lot to say, important stories to tell, but many tragically don’t have the courage to say it. Honestly, I myself don’t have the courage to say it as directly as I’d like. That’s why I write. Layers seeks to give a voice to any student, and I pitch this to you because it’s given me a voice. For almost anything you want that voice for, Layers is offering.

“The power of the written word.” It’s a tired cliché, but it’s endured this long because it possesses a truth. Writing is a strong tool in ways both big and small.

Writers can change the world in ways no other profession can. If knowledge is power, writers are distributors and conduits of that power. A good idea, recorded and published, can outlast the writer by literal millennia.

Writers can change the world in small, but important ways as well. A well-written letter or even a sappy poem can maintain a connection of hearts over miles. A good recipe can warm hearts and ease troubled minds.

The writing done at Layers is somewhere in the middle because of the size of its audience. If an article you write leaves a lasting impression, you could get campus policy changed. You could simply find other students who share your struggles and feelings, and in doing so find comfort for yourself and others. You could change campus culture, or address and fight structural problems. You could hold the powerful accountable. It is the strongest and most functionally flexible tool one could have. Use it. If you’ve got something to say, say it.

To be clear, this isn’t meant to intimidate. You don’t have to do great and incredible things with your writing if you don’t want to (though I’ll always encourage you to). If you’re not confident in your writing, that’s ok. Layers has editors that help with that. What matters is your thought process and your perspective.

Layers has two main sections for writing: news and opinion. The former is informational and tries to be objective, the latter is subjective (and my preference). If you’re interested in writing for either, contact Jason (jchua5313). You can also reach out to me, Ezekiel (ehuynh8571), the writer of this article and the Opinion Editor for Layers. I’ll direct you where you need to go. If you want to see Layers’ editorial rules, you can here. You can come with your own ideas for what you want to write, or if you want to be a staff writer, we’ll guide you

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Ezekiel Huỳnh

Ezekiel Huynh is a Staff Writer and Editor for Layers Media whose photography can be found on Instagram at @ezhunh

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