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Reviewing the best of The State Press' 2022 coverage

Our coverage of all Sun Devils and their surrounding neighborhoods celebrated a year of growth and dedication. Reflect on 2022 as told by student reporters

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Graphic originally published Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2023. 


In 2022, as the ASU community and The State Press continued to get back to some sense of normalcy after existing alongside the COVID-19 pandemic for two years, our coverage of all Sun Devils and their surrounding neighborhoods celebrated a year of growth and dedication.

From coverage of ASU's partnerships, investment ventures and star athletes who time and time again overcame adversity, The State Press also paved new paths in its endeavor to unpack the 20 year legacy of ASU President Michael Crow, in its persistence to nail down details of breaking news controversy and in its efforts to capture a diversity of perspectives. 

The following stories represent what The State Press means to all of us who work tirelessly to create it and upholds our mission to serve, provoke and challenge our changing audience. These stories have been some of our favorites to report, write, edit, photograph, illustrate and share. The entire SP staff extends a tremendous thank you to all who allowed us to take a peek into their lives and to those who shared their expertise; you have helped make a significant contribution to informing the ASU community.

READ MORE: A look at the artists' sketchbooks of Fall 2022


ASU's expansion into California seen as rare step for a public state university | Alexis Waiss

Changing the status quo of operating as a public higher education institution, senior reporter Alexis Waiss unpacks how ASU's California Center is both a rare step and potential treasure trove of opportunities for the University. "Since public universities rely on state government funding, these institutions tend to not create in-person degree programs for students located outside their home state. However, experts say out-of-state programs like those housed in the California Center are fairly common among private universities, as nonprofit funding allows more independence," Waiss writes. 

How ASU bought its way to carbon neutrality | Claire Braggs and Kaden Ryback

On paper, ASU emits no carbon dioxide, obtaining a neutrality designation in 2020 by paying nearly $28,000 to a solar farm in India and over $46,000 to a tree-planting project in Phoenix. Science and technology reporters Kaden Ryback and Claire Braggs report, "The University's zero-carbon status only applies to its direct emissions and electric bill. What is not included is the carbon dioxide the University indirectly contributes, like carbon dioxide emitted by staff's air travel and from students' cars as they drive to class. In fact, ASU's emissions it directly controls increased by 25% from 2007 to 2020, meaning ASU is burning more fuel than it did when it pledged neutrality in 2007."

The voices of ASU on diaspora | The ASU community, edited by Rachel Lee, Sophia Balasubramanian and Sam Ellefson

In this series, a first for The State Press, all of the featured poems were submitted by members of the ASU community based on a specific theme. "Diaspora — a term used when referring to populations that have moved from their places of origin — has led to greater diversity in the cultural experiences we share." Each individual experience in the collection is influenced by upbringing and tradition, in the end, meaning a lot of different things.

State Press Play: Jared Taylor visit highlights on-campus frustrations, questions about free speech at ASU | Kirsten Dorman

When a controversial speaker visited the ASU Tempe campus in Fall 2022, students called for the University to stop the event from happening. The speech was held anyway. Podcast reporter Kirsten Dorman asked experts what, according to the First Amendment, the University can do to prevent such activities from happening. 

'Real estate is king': How Michael Crow found a way to fund and expand ASU | Alexis Waiss and Jamie Montoya

In the years since ASU President Michael Crow's first appearance on campus, the University has generated revenue by leasing tax-exempt land to private-sector companies in an attempt to make up for inefficient state funding. Senior reporters Alexis Waiss and Jamie Montoya spoke to Morgan Olsen, ASU's chief financial officer, who "said the University's real estate expansion is meant to not only 'diversify the revenue streams,' but enrich the opportunities ASU can provide to students and faculty."

Initial ASU PD report on altercation at GLV left out alleged use of racial slur | Kristen Apolline Castillo and Wyatt Myskow

An incident at the Delta Gamma sorority house resulted in a private lawsuit, one assault charge and an incident report that left the chief of police "disappointed," community and culture editor Kristen Apolline Castillo and special projects coordinator Wyatt Myskow write — "The initial police report, which detailed the altercation between ASU students Lindsey Schmitt and William Hood Jr., left out important details from a police-recorded interview that were later added in a supplemental document."

Hispanic Heritage Month: Estudiantes latinos e hispanos de ASU buscan impactar a la sociedad con sus carreras | Jimena Vera

In The State Press' first original reporting from its Spanish section, La Prensa, reporter Jimena Vera writes how three campus organizations have different goals but the same purpose of wanting to promote the Hispanic student community to professional improvement. 

With Election Day fast approaching, ASU student organizers take differing approaches | Shane Brennan

Examining Students for Kari Lake and its volunteers that make up a different campaigning approach, politics reporter Shane Brennan writes, "Dressing as chickens outside the Arizona state capitol building and questioning Katie Hobbs in a Starbucks may be splashy, but it is part of a deliberate process that Kari Lake and her many campaign groups are employing to swing young voters to her side."

Herm Edwards to take 50% buyout of remaining salary, plus benefits and academic bonus | Piper Hansen

In September 2022, now former ASU football head coach Herm Edwards came to a mutual agreement with the school to relinquish his coaching duties. According to separation agreement documents, Edwards took a 50% buyout of his remaining salary. The buyout amounted to approximately $4.4 million to be paid through 2024, writes digital editor-in-chief Piper Hansen. 

From detecting phones to using decoy sites, Honorlock raises online test surveillance concerns | Anna Campbell

ASU added Honorlock in May 2021 as one of three options for remote exam proctoring. It monitors tests live using artificial intelligence to alert human proctors. Senior reporter Anna Campbell writes that students voiced concerns about the technology, one professor saying that the "added pressure in addition to taking already stressful exams, professors create an adversarial relationship with their students."

Opinion: Honorlock room scans erode students' right to privacy | James Doyle Brown Jr.

When an Ohio district court rules a room scan prior to an online test violated a student's constitutional right to privacy, it became clear ASU's use of online proctoring services weren't going to be directly impacted by the decision. "But it's important the University doesn't continue a precedent that eats away at our personal liberty," writes columnist James Doyle Brown Jr. "...The name 'Honorlock' is as patronizing as the presumption of guilt that led to this tormenting practice. Honor implies trust. There's no honor in being physically locked out of an opportunity to make a choice — the honor comes from making the right choice."

Chaos on tap: The rise of Tempe Barstool | Leah Mesquita

State Press Magazine's reporter Leah Mesquita chronicles the growth and changes of Tempe Barstool, "a direct affiliate of Barstool Sports, the digital media company known for reporting on sports and pop culture for a national audience of college students." But Tempe Barstool is slowly moving away from athletics, "establishing itself as a media hub where students can share a wide range of raucous entertainment. The account has most notably gained traction for sharing what could be considered common college shenanigans — if serious injuries and felonies can be noted as such," Mesquita writes. 

Months after retiring, former ASU groundskeeper keeps his green thumb | Logan Stanley

Brian Johnson, who has painted the field at 25 of the past 26 Super Bowl games, worked at ASU for over three decades, working a total of 236 games, writes senior reporter Logan Stanley. "On his very last day as ASU's lead groundskeeper, Johnson headed to the east side of Sun Devil Stadium where he'd spent many hours of his life and knelt down on the grass. He pulled out a pair of scissors and began cutting away a small, single-square-foot section of the field."

'We had no bargaining power': Student housing workers' story of exploitation, administrative neglect and pandemic mismanagement | Alexis Moulton

In Fall 2020, community assistants became increasingly dissatisfied with their employment. From the start of the semester, concerns stemmed from COVID-19 protocol and overtime hours to resident safety. State Press Magazine managing editor Alexis Moulton writes, "The University's response, characterized by interviews with seven former CAs, was 'dismissive,' 'manipulative' and 'totally useless.'"

ASU interim head coach Shaun Aguano looks to lead program together as a family | Danny Stipanovich

Following a mutual agreement Herm Edwards would relinquish coaching duties, the Sun Devil football team looked internally to fill his spot. Sports reporter Danny Stipanovich opens his profile of Aguano, recalling the coach's high school coaching mentors. "But win or lose, Aguano will continue preaching his message of family as he works to continue his legacy in Arizona football history. 'There's not one coach in the nation that loves Arizona and is in place at Arizona State that I think can do a better job than I can,' Aguano said."

Opinión: Cuando el racismo viene desde adentro la casa | Brenda Muñoz Murguia

"In a world where Latines often have to fight for representation, we ourselves need to learn, understand and respect our differences in order to inform people outside of our community. We can't make progress while a good portion of Latines don't understand how and why 'Latine' isn't a race. We, as a community of Latines, need to progress past outdated colonialist standards and stop trying to be whiter than we are," writes La Prensa digital producer Brenda Muñoz Murguia for State Press Magazine's The Community Issue.

Insight: Grieving the loss of a college mentor | Marissa Armstrong

In grieving the loss of her former boss, The Echo reporter Marissa Armstrong writes with other college students in mind and offers advice from what she'd picked up in the process. "The hard-won lesson I have learned from grief, which I offer to all other college students is this: Relationships matter most. Above deadlines, careers, or plans for the future, love your people. Let down your guard and let them in. It is better to grieve someone because you knew them well than because you didn't know them enough," Armstrong writes.

How ASU fell into NASA's orbit | Kaden Ryback

ASU is one of the only schools in the United States certified by NASA to build spaceflight hardware. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration has invested hundreds of millions of dollars into ASU's space partners, "and the University is home to many researchers and scientists from the agency. Since the beginning of its work with NASA, ASU has launched a space education program and constructed the largest research facility on campus for its projects," writes science and technology reporter Kaden Ryback. 

Editor's note: Think there was something we missed in 2022? Let us know by emailing editor.statepress@gmail.com.

Edited by Jasmine Kabiri and Grace Copperthite.


Reach the reporter at pjhanse1@asu.edu and follow @piperjhansen on Twitter. 

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter.


Piper HansenDigital Editor-in-Chief

Piper Hansen is the digital editor-in-chief at The State Press, overseeing digital content from six departments. Joining SP in Spring 2020, she has covered student government, housing and COVID-19. She has previously written about state politics for The Arizona Republic and the Arizona Capitol Times.


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