Welcome to the New Das Tor!

Das Tor TeamHello fellow T-birds,

This is Sophia Gao ’11, Editor-in-Chief of Das Tor. My team and I are very excited to welcome all of you to our new Das Tor site. After reorganizing, changing the format and rebuilding the team, Das Tor is back and better than ever.

First allow me to proudly introduce the new Das Tor team of this fall trimester:

Our Writer’s Liaison, Ben Neblock ’11, is currently an MBA student with a focus in finance. He is responsible for collecting features and commentary for Das Tor, and is eager to hear from prospective writers with an interesting story to tell.

Our Weekly News Editor, Julianne Dixon ’12, is a dual degree student with a focus in marketing. She is responsible for building contacts with club leaders and also managing Das Tor social media to better connect Das Tor with clubs and students.

Our other Weekly News Editor, Roger Li ’12, is an MBA student specializing in marketing. He is responsible for building connections with Thunderbird department and program leaders and collecting news updates for Das Tor.

As for myself, I am an MS student with a focus in global development. As the leader of the team, my job is to ensure that the new Das Tor stays focused on its mission and to better serve the whole Thunderbird community. As the new Editor-in-Chief, I am very excited to be a part of this big change here, and would love to tell you more about our history and the reasons why we made this change.

Das Tor began in 1969 when Bob Morabito founded it. Das Tor means “the gate” in German. Bob wrote the mission statement when he started this student newspaper: “Wherever we travel, whenever we pass from one country to another we must go through a gate. However, Das Tor means more than simply the traversing of borders; it stands as a symbol and artery of communication through the barriers of superstition, ignorance, dogma, racism and prejudice; traditional enemies which continue to be a detriment to progress and global peace. Idealistic though it may sound, it has now become the responsibility of our generation, the future leaders of the international community, to make every effort to widen these gates and succeed where previous generations have failed. Das Tor must therefore be an open forum for debate, a clearing house of ideas that may further prepare us for the international community and further augment the reputation of this youthful institution.”

Das Tor since then has enjoyed a long run of success, but times have changed. While the print format and content were relevant during Bob’s time, it became necessary to update this important publication to match current media practices and to better serve Thunderbird’s global community — which includes distance-learning students who often study far from campus.

In response to these trends, Das Tor editors moved the publication from its traditional print format to the Web in the fall of 2011. The new online publication continues the Das Tor mission to serve as “an open forum for debate, a clearing house of ideas that may further prepare us for the international community.” The Web is also the fastest and most effective way to give students useful information that might help them pursue their dreams in this global environment. We hope to use Das Tor online to further connect students and alumni around the globe and thus better serve our Thunderbird global community.

Again, we welcome you to the new Das Tor. We sincerely hope you enjoy it and look forward to hearing your suggestions to help us improve.

My warmest,
Sophia Gao

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