Over the next few weeks, I will experience my series of “lasts” as an undergraduate student: my last lectures, my last finals and my last graduation.
Not only will I part with the university I called home for the past three-and-a-half years, but I will also leave The Daily Campus and “retire” from my journalism career.
I remember joining the staff as a freshman, contributing articles before mustering up the courage to apply as opinion editor. From there, I moved up to managing editor, where I was mentored by student leaders who influenced and impacted me in ways that shaped how I view leadership and journalism, then I was appointed editor-in-chief for the fall 2016 semester.
These past few months have tested my determination, patience and integrity in the most unfathomable ways. SMU experienced a hurricane of news and The Daily Campus stood in its eye. In this semester alone, I’ve had to report on protests and demonstrations, the outbreak of national news, and sadly, the death of a friend.
The array of emotions I experienced as our staff published these sensitive stories, while having to remain as impartial as possible and be the rock when I was needed, humbled me.
I am truly grateful to have these opportunities in journalism and stand by this vocation since I was 12.
As I explored various mediums throughout my middle school, high school and college careers, I’ve never loved anything more than writing for print. But alas, the inevitable shift from print to digital and social media-driven news has redefined my perception of the craft.
This ever-changing platform allows for innovation and creation through multimedia storytelling and I’m excited to see how it unfolds.
Until then, I’d like to thank those during my time in journalism and with SMU Student Media – whether it was bonding sessions sparked during late production nights, difficult-to-swallow and thought-provoking conversations in meetings or the unique experiences only The Daily Campus staffers can relate to, you’ve all impacted me and made my SMU experience unforgettable.
Lisa: I couldn’t ask for a better friend or better successor; your tenacity, grit and commitment to your work will lead the DC to greatness next semester.
Alyssa, Mollie, Gabriella and Katie: thank you for your support, hard work and energy. Your friendship, joy and laughter always made the DC office an enjoyable place to be (even during the long shifts).
Noah and Riley: Thanks for your commitment and dedication to the DC, as well as all the chortles.
To the rest of the DC staff: thank you for allowing me to lead such a talented group of writers and content creators. I couldn’t have asked for greater coworkers; your diligence, trust and faith in journalism and the DC continue to exhibit the independent voice of our campus.
Jay, Vamos, Thomas and Batsell: thank you for your patience, kindness and guidance. I’m so appreciative to have learned journalism through your lenses; your support and mentorship have influenced me greatly.
To Clemens: thank you for putting up with me all these years. If it weren’t for your encouragement, wisdom and honesty, I would not be the writer or journalist I am now.
To my parents: thank you is the most underrated thing I could say – your undying support, loyalty and love mean everything to me. You both are the reasons why I am who I am.
To my brother Christian: enjoy the rest of your time at SMU – it goes by quickly. Thrive and do well.
As the end of my swan song croons near, I digress with a quote from Henry Anatole Grunwald. His words emit the foundation of journalism and the pursuit of truth:
“Journalism can never be silent: that is its greatest virtue and its greatest fault. It must speak, and speak immediately, while the echoes of wonder, the claims of triumph and the signs of horror are still in the air.”