Editor-in-chief gives final farewell

It is surreal for me to say goodbye to something that defined my career as a college student.

When I first joined The Daily Campus staff my sophomore year, I had no idea the profound impact the paper would have on my time at SMU. Then I was a copy editor, completely unaware of where I wanted my career as journalist to go or where my passion for uncovering stories came from.

As I moved from copy editor to chief copy editor to managing editor to assignments desk editor to editor-in-chief, I slowly learned why I love journalism.

I have a passion for this work because it demands the truth; it requires endless research and human interaction; it questions everything; it uncovers wrongdoings and celebrates successes; and most importantly, it teaches me to open my eyes to the world and to be a better human being.

I never would have learned any of this without my time spent working for the paper, surrounded by talented writers who share this passion.

When I took on the role of editor-in-chief the paper was in a large time of transition as it moved from tri-weekly to weekly, changed its name and worked on increasing its online presence. We redefined staff roles, created weekly work shifts, pressed for online content and focused on campus news to keep the paper relevant.

During my time on staff I have celebrated accomplishments with my peers, spoke with influential individuals, lost sleep over controversial pieces, put the needs of the paper above my schoolwork, experienced ridicule online and learned to find my voice.

And I would not change a single part of my time with SMU Student Media.

One of the most difficult parts of this farewell is saying goodbye to those who defined the late nights, editorial decisions, heated debates, open conversations and endless laughter of the DC.

Olivia, I am so excited to see where you take the paper next semester as editor-in-chief; you are the most qualified person for this position and I am so proud to call you my successor.

Emily and CarleeAnn, thank you for being the most supportive friends, for keeping the office positive and for bringing laughter to the DC. Katie, Bridget, Campbell and Jacquelyn, thank you all for being the backbone that helps keep this paper working behind-the-scenes.

To the rest of the staff: thank you for allowing me to lead you during my two terms, for being honest with me, for voicing your opinions, for staying dedicated and for believing in the power of journalism. The independent voice of SMU would not exist without each of you.

To Jay, Batsell and Suhler: thank you all for supporting me and teaching me more about journalism than I thought was possible. You three are my greatest advisors and I cannot thank you enough for being my mentors, taking me under your wings and showing me what it means to be a true journalist.

To my non-journalism friends: thank you for being understanding of my ever-changing schedule, for putting up with my stress over AP Style and my rants on the news. You all are the only ones who will continue to think it’s normal for me to run across the room with a computer above my head screaming, “There’s breaking news!”

To my mother: I owe everything I am today solely to you.

Theodore Roosevelt once said, “Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.”

I still wholeheartedly believe in the freedom of the press and the power of its work. Thank you for letting me be a part of something so worth doing.

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