This will be the last Alumni Essentials post before we take a break for the holidays. Dry your eyes, and read on. We’re showcasing some good stuff this week.

First, winter 2011 senior editor Wendy Gillis dove into the cold case of Beverly Smith, who was shot dead in her kitchen in December 1974. Gillis got Smith’s twin sister, daughter, the man who was just acquitted of the killing and the officer who re-opened the case to tell their stories for the first time.

Next, summer 2013 editor Rhiannon Russell has been at some controversial trials for the Whitehorse Daily Star. The past few weeks she’s covered the trial of Michael Nehass, who’s been waiting for his day in court for two years and 11 months. She’s also followed Adam Cormack, whose facing a “significantly” lighter sentence for robbery because of his cognitive difficulties.

Finally, we’d like to congratulate Graeme Bayliss and Ronan O’Beirne from last year’s masthead on their new positions. Bayliss will be the new copy editor at The Walrus starting in January and O’Beirne recently began his role as an associate editor at J-Source. If he’s any way dedicated to his job he’ll be in our shared workspace as this is published.

That’s it for now. See you in January!