I have thought about writing this column a million times since my freshman year, yet I still have no idea what I want to say. But every imagined version of this column always came down to one point: The Daily Campus was my home.
Home has always been a complicated and unstable term for me, but no matter what, The Daily Campus was always here for me. The people became my family. I met some of my closest friends, fell in love with one of them and used one of my paychecks to get myself a cat. My little family grew.
The work was hard, and it was long. It was a lot of late nights until two in the morning, skipped morning classes and phone calls trying to explain to my family why my work schedule was the way it was. It was loopy, half-asleep conversations on the couches while we waited for production to finish and late-night trips to 7-Eleven to get coffee. But most of all, it was fun, and I got to go home every night knowing that we made a product that was worth something.
To be fair, I still have no idea how we managed to make a paper while standing on top of tables and screaming out the lyrics to “She’s So Gone” from “Lemonade Mouth” and reenacting “High School Musical 2’s” entire “Bet on It” scene, but it happened.
When I think back to my college experience, it is the memories at The Daily Campus that I will remember the most. From drinking wine in a 40th-floor hotel room that looked out over Times Square to doing improv at midnight in Kentucky to hitching a ride home with three people in the trunk of an SUV, I’ve ended up in a lot of interesting locations.
As a freshman, I remember standing in the newsroom with the group of nervous freshmen waiting for the Life meeting to start. I stared at the Macs and Christmas lights in awe and whispered to the girl next to me, “How do we get there? How do we get to be one of the people who works here?” That girl ended up being Alex, who four years later I not only got to work side-by-side with as an executive, but who I’ve gotten to live with for the past nine months.
My time as the Digital Editor has been a weird one. The entire staff of digital producers graduated alongside the Digital Editor when I was a sophomore, so I took on the position without ever having worked for the digital team at the DC. I had to start from scratch. It was hard and confusing, and trying to remake our entire website last summer to fit the needs of the entire editor cohort was the hardest project I’ve ever taken on here. But I’ve loved every minute of it.
Each year, I’ve dreaded when the seniors graduated and wondered how hard it would be to walk away from this place when it was my time. How do you hand off something so important to you? How do you walk away from your home?
I thought it would be harder. But it turns out the incoming editors are really freaking good at their jobs and I can’t wait to see where The Daily Campus goes with their leadership. It’s a wonderful feeling, really, to hire employees who then come around to take your place. To Grace and Charlotte, I know you’ll do amazing things with Digital next year. I’m so incredibly proud of the work you’ve done and the work you’ll continue to do. Keep my legacy of sitting on the back counter during the editor’s meetings.
To the entire editor cohort next year, I know you’ll absolutely kill it next year. I’d say make us all proud, but you already have.
And to The Daily Campus building, thanks for giving me a home for the past four years. I don’t know what I would have done without you.