Monday marks the last day of print publication for The Michigan Daily for 2015. With that, the seniors bid farewell to their time at 420 Maynard as new editors assume their elected positions today. As per Daily tradition, the goodbyes from the seniors included here reflect on their time at the paper and its impact on their lives — just as it has impacted the 124 classes that came before.
Luna Anna Archey
Statement Photo Editor
At Michigan, I started my freshman year as a rower. There was a constant conflict in my mind about pursuing a career as an athlete. The late nights, early mornings, and injuries led me to visions of a different version of my time as a student – rushing around campus with a camera on my back instead of an athlete backpack, photoshoots and interviews scrawled in my planner instead of mandatory practice and eighteen credits blocking off my days.
Halfway through my sophomore year I finally made it to 420 Maynard. I saw those that devoted nights to the newsroom, as I myself struggled to fit two dayside events and a few sports into my schedule. I marveled at how their devotion let to such renowned quality work, as I still do.
In these two years I so quickly became one of the group of many camping in the newsroom past midnight. I still marvel at the devotion of my classmates turned colleagues, and everyday I am blown away by their talents.
Since my freshman year, the tireless schedule hasn’t changed. Unreal athletic dreams have been replaced with unreal journalistic career aspirations. But the atmosphere at the Daily makes them attainable. Working with this caliber of dedicated students on such a large scale as seen at the Daily is truly empowering.
I have always struggled connecting words without a picture to string them together. Saying goodbye to the Daily isn’t putting words to a set of ten images that tell a simple story about an event, a person, a place – it’s two years worth of photos. The relationships behind the photos, the experiences, the late nights scrambling into the newsroom to put them on paper, couldn’t be summed up in a set of photos and a few hundred words.
I can wish that I made it through the doors of the newsroom earlier, or be sad that my time at the Daily was half that of many of my fellow seniors. But I am proud that Michigan athletics taught me to be relentless, and that the Daily finally allowed me to add passion to that relentlessness
I thought I was really behind the game when I joined the Daily. It was second semester of my sophomore year, and I felt like I was doing college all wrong. I didn’t know what I wanted or who I was anymore. I had no idea what I wanted to be when I grew up, yet frankly, I still don’t.
But the truth is, something clicked when I started working at the Daily. All of the sudden I realized there was more to college than Greek life, and a world of possibilities existed at Michigan that didn’t make me feel like I wasn’t being true to myself.
I joined the Daily as a copy editor and found that I was good at it. I liked spending my time searching for facts and catching errors. I liked hanging out at the copy desk. Even though I was scared of everyone and didn’t feel like my role at the Daily was very big or important, I knew I was a part of something that was meaningful.
When I decided to take on the position of copy chief, I didn’t expect the Daily to become such I gigantic part of my life. I knew the time commitment would be pretty sizable, but because I was splitting the position with Laura I wasn’t worried. I remember some of the first few nights of production as copy chief, I nearly panicked because I was so concerned I’d screw the paper up or miss something crucial. But over time, I realized what each of the managing editors realized: none of us were 100 percent confident in ourselves, but every weekday we made a paper. And even if we didn’t always know exactly what we were doing, we met a deadline. We tried our best. We made mistakes and we learned from them.
I’d like to thank the current staff of copy editors who have been a joy to work with. The Daily wouldn’t mean as much to me without all of you. To Emily and Emma, thank you for being the most hilarious, entertaining and dedicated senior copy editors. I’m lucky to have spent a semester working with each of you, and I’m so incredibly proud of you both for taking on leadership roles at the Daily.
To Sam, Derek and Aarica, thank you for being flexible with copy and for trusting us with the work of your writers. I don’t say that lightly.
To Laura, I can’t thank you enough: for being my co-chief, for your keen eyes, your ability to innovate and emphasis on perfection. I’ve learned a lot from working with you, and I am more than impressed to see you taking on the role of managing editor next semester.
My heart swells when I think about leaving. I will never forget all the things that I’ve learned while working alongside some of the most talented people I’ve ever met. For that, I’m so, so grateful.
Community Culture Editor
I remember when I first started on the Daily, covering the Take Back the RC movement, scrawling a notebook about young adult literature, knowing, even then, that I was the best writer in this stinking place.
Kidding, of course. It wasn’t until recently that I realized how awesome I was.
There is so much badness in the world, in college, wherever you go, I guess. There’s so much annoying shit and people who are just like “What! Bleh!” and sometimes you’re wearing glasses, and it starts to hail! Do you know what it’s like to hear hail smacking against the glass right in front of your eyes? It’s like getting shot at.
So why have I never been sad at the Daily? I don’t know. I guess I’ll say what everyone says because I am, at my core, in my deepest, darkest, most secret-special places, regular.
It’s the people. It’s those who sit on the couches, in the conference room, at the Arts Desk. Those who ask you to Five Guys, those who walk through fog to coffee, those who giggle. Those who can’t believe you think Birdman is better than Boyhood. Those with snark and condescension, with pretension. Those who hate the other sections and love their own. Those who demand you cut your Oxford commas. Those who told me I’m funny. Those who said, “this is really good, Alex.” Who told you, “Further, further, further. Take it further. Take a risk.” Those who lead you somewhere, who teach, who laugh, who can’t believe you or anyone else did anything because what are we doing here making this paper? Who the hell are we or you or me or any of us? Those who are lost in themselves, in others. Those who lose themselves in blind, unfiltered love. Like I have. Those who can’t answer questions in a sentence or less.
I’m not happy. Haven’t been for a while. But there’s something about teasing Catherine, about marrying Kathleen, hugging Jacob, moaning at Chloe, massaging Karen, breaking Theisen’s ice, parenting Caroline, listening to Mimi, editing my beat, teaching, teaching, learning, writing, creating, gnashing my teeth at this fucking shit, seeing one review that makes you say, “When she’s a senior, she’ll be better than all of us put together. But especially better than me.” There’s something about this place. Maybe it’s the 50-cent Cokes. Wait, yeah that’s it. Cut the people stuff! It’s void!
I’m not genuine enough for this, for this whole whatever. I’m not crying. Maybe I never will. But here is the end, the first end in my senior year, which is also an end, which is just great!
I don’t feel much of anything yet. But it’s coming, it’s coming like a train, and it’s aiming for that spot in your gut where lives crushes and indigestion and that hot, hot sensation when you think about the good, good stuff you’re gonna do with so-and-so. It’s aiming for the BAE donuts, for my column, for karaoke at Circus after elections, for yelling, “Community Culture! Conference Room!” God dammit.
Goodbye. I have spent too little time with my family. My children: Community Culture. Gillian, my big sister. Giancarlo, my uncle. Jacob, my brother. Kathleen, my wife. Karen, my love. Mimi, my fun sister-in-law. The Arts Section, my illegitimate cousins.
Because of this, I have felt less alone, and you cannot know what that means to me.
I did it for the money.
Senior Arts Editor
As I try to write this goodbye, I don’t feel any sort of overwhelming sense of sadness or regret. Which, I think, means I’ve taken Daily Arts as far as I could, and it has taken me as far as it can. And when that happens, it’s time to part ways. And that’s not always a bad thing.
Because of Daily Arts, I developed a love of film I knew I had but didn’t know how to express. And as I read through my old articles, I can see that love build and develop into a fully formed understanding. I know that I would not be who I am today without that love, and so I would not be who I am without Daily Arts.
To FilmSquads past and present, I thank you for heated debates about Wes Anderson’s best film, for anxious viewings of the Academy Awards, for a love of “Fast and Furious,” for the occasional fistfight in the snows of Ann Arbor and for countless nights of karaoke-infused debauchery.
To FilmSquads future, I pray that those couches that sit idly in the back of the newsroom will treat you as well as they have treated me. Regard them with care, for they are as much a part of FilmSquad as you are.
Ride or Die.
Daily Arts Writer
I’ve been writing for the Daily since October of my freshman year, when I sent a few (unpolished and generally awful) sample clips to the Arts Editor. A week later, I got a lengthy email that, not a sentence or two after its note of congratulations, informed me that the most important next step would be to learn all the rules, policies, and traditions of the Daily. It had to have been a 20-page attachment, complete with Table of Contents, footnotes, and an acknowledgements section (just kidding about that last part). Aside from skimming through it that first time, I never learned looked at the attachment again. I realized it was less of an actuality than it was a statement, a credo, saying, “We take journalism seriously at the Daily, and if you’re up for the challenge, you’ll learn to take journalism seriously, too.” And I did.
In fact, working for the Daily taught me to take myself seriously as a journalist, and not in the I’m-going-to-spend-weeks-sifting-through-classified-files-and-use-outlandish-witticisms-to-convince-readers-of-their-own-wrongness kind of way, but more in the sense of caring. Giving it time. Writing with precision. Knowing that the paper doesn’t just get thrown into the vast Internet void — it’s picked up, flipped through and folded by people who want to read it. If the Daily proves anything, it’s that there’s still something vital, something essential about collegiate journalism. The project is not traditional so much as it is journalism with a conscience. Journalism that thinks.
I’d like to name a few people now who’ve made my experience wonderful, challenging, insightful, dull, gritty, educative and spirited (among other things). Thank you to Matt Easton, my first film beat editor. Thank you to Sean Czarnecki, my second beat editor, Jamie Bircoll, my third beat editor, and Jacob Rich, my fourth. You all made sure I had the opportunities and space to write the best that I could, and for that I’m very grateful. Thank you to Giancarlo Buonomo for letting me write that 1994 music piece in the summer of 2014, which got notice from a few people at Pitchfork. Thank you to Adam Theisen for letting me continue to try my hand at music writing. Thanks also to Akshay Seth for pumping the Arts section with truly stunning criticism — I looked to your stuff a lot for inspiration.
Going forward now there’s not much else to say but goodbye. In some ways it’s hard, in other way it’s not. I’ll miss the quirkiness and the freedom to write for a college audience, but I take comfort in knowing that the Daily won’t change. It’ll be the same manically brilliant monolith at Maynard forever.
Editor in Chief
Emerging from my dorm room at 7 a.m., I joined Sam on the floor. We opened a Google Doc on our computers, and waited. The University’s administration warned us “big news” would be announced at this early hour, so we sat there patiently in our pajamas, and waited. And then it happened: Martha Pollack would be the University’s interim Provost, and within seconds, I saw Peter, Andrew and Adam join us on the doc to help construct a story in under five minutes.
This was my first time covering breaking news — and I felt so damn cool.
For the first time, I felt a part of something bigger than myself. The words I wrote and edited for The Michigan Daily weren’t about me; they were about others. And they meant something. They told the stories of our campus: the rise and fall of public figures, the calls on our administration to increase minority enrollment, the heartbreak of a football loss, the rejoice following the announcement of a new head coach — and the list goes on.
And as I moved up on staff, the impact of these stories grew profoundly. My heart escaped my chest as I watched President Obama approach the podium in the IM Building; I risked getting arrested as I interviewed student protesters as police cuffed them; my mind grew as I spent 17 hours in our newsroom, meticulously editing a special report on the University’s handling of sexual misconduct cases.
But the job became more difficult after I became editor in chief. There were some days when I’d hide behind my large Mac computer at the back of the newsroom, plug in headphones, drown out the cacophony of this newsroom and try to hide my tears.
But then I would unplug my headphones and look around me. I’d see Sam call over to Sugerman to help edit a story. I’d hear Aarica’s contagious laugh. I’d read Adam’s and Chloe's hilariously brilliant Hip-Hop and TV columns. I’d observe the tomfoolery occurring in the Sports section as Max and Lev tried to push Jake to his limits.
I quickly learned no matter what kind of rut this job put me in, I’d always find a way out of it with the help of those around me. These people make the Daily what it is, and they gave me so much. And in my role as editor in chief, I had the opportunity to promote their work, defend them in hours of need and give them opportunities to grow.
The Daily has never been about us; it’s been about the stories of others that we try to tell. But within the colorful walls and broken windows of 420 Maynard, we came together every night to make a newspaper — not about ourselves, but of the lives, stories and voices of others.
Jake, Stephanie, Yossi and Andrew: No one understands the amount of work, stress and sacrifice this job requires. I’m so grateful for your outreach and support — it helped me through so much.
Flame: Thank you for believing that I could take on the Managing News Editor role as a sophomore; I wouldn’t be where I am today without your aid and encouragement.
Teresa, Katie and Bethany: The passion, talent and drive the three of you exuded as phenomenal female leaders in this newsroom made me believe my voice was important, too.
Rachel, Will, Ian and Stephanie: You made the Daily feel like home. Our year together was one of the best of my life, and I could not have asked for better friends or colleagues to run the news section with. #StaySchlisseled
The 2014 and 2015 Managing Editors: Working alongside all of you taught me more than I could ever learn in a classroom. I’m honored to have had the chance to work with, befriend and love all of you.
Rachel: Your support, friendship, humor and care in and out of the newsroom has kept me sane. Thank you for always being there for me regardless of how trivial my issues sometimes seem.
To Mom, Dad, Caitlyn and Megan: Thanking you for supporting my choice to “play Daily,” rather than invest more time in my academics.
Sam: Never did I imagine how far we would come together. I hope we can continue to work alongside each other as we achieve success throughout our lives.
Lev: There’s no one I’d rather spend a year sitting one foot away from.
Finally, Peter: Your mentorship, friendship, love, selflessness and care mean so much to me. You not only taught me everything I know about journalism, but, more importantly, you taught me how to be a better person. I can’t thank you enough for all that you’ve given me.
I dedicated my college career to the Daily, and sometimes I wonder if that wasn’t enough. Those who make the Daily great gave me so much, and for that, I am forever indebted.
Managing Sports Editor
I drove to the Big House the other night as the clock crept past 2:30 a.m. I made a lap around the stadium and then another.
There’s something oddly compelling about the place, whether you’re a senior who has covered the Michigan football team for two seasons or a wide-eyed 11-year-old making his first appearance on a football Saturday.
That’s how old I was when I first came to Ann Arbor from New Jersey with my dad, to see Michigan play Eastern Michigan. Jason Avant scored three touchdowns that day in 2005, and my dad and I had the best time.
I sometimes wonder what my 11-year-old self would say about the experiences I’ve had the past two years. I don’t think I would have believed any of it.
It seemed far-fetched even during my freshman year. I’d just started writing for the Daily then, covering a field hockey game here and a soccer game there. I’d sit in the Big House during football games with my friend Marc, and he’d point to the press box, telling me I’d be writing about the team up there in a couple of years. I never really thought it would happen.
This whole thing has been surreal to me, and the fact that it’s ending is surreal, too. I like to think I’ve poured my heart into this newspaper, both in my work and making friendships that I think will last a lifetime.
I’ll still write SportsMonday Columns next semester, but it won’t be the same. I’ll miss not coming into 420 Maynard Street every night to write, edit and bother Jake.
So thanks, Wass, for bringing me here. And Neal, thanks for answering my text on a Saturday night freshman year about whether a field hockey player should be listed as a forward or midfielder. It seemed like a serious matter at the time, and I always try to remember that when I help younger writers.
Zach and Everett, thanks for everything. I think 95 percent of the things I said as MSE came down to just repeating stuff you guys told me.
Thanks to Nez and Tim, for still giving advice years after you graduated. And to Brady McCollough, Mike Rosenberg and many others for taking time out of your busy schedules to come talk to us.
To the 2014 football beat: That was … interesting. I’ll enjoy myself at the bowl game you guys never got to cover. I only wish I could stay at an Embassy Suites.
Thanks to Raj, Jeremy, Shannon, Slov, Liz and Feldman. You all contributed to the Daily in different ways, but thanks for helping teach me what it means to love this place.
Thanks to John Lowe, for caring just as much about us when you live in Texas as you did when you lived in Michigan.
To Minh, Kelly, Brad, Jacob and Chloe, thanks for giving everything you have to this paper, even when you aren’t pursuing journalism careers. The sports section wouldn’t work without you guys.
Thanks to Max, my successor, for being a great friend and confidant. In a few years, the freshmen will talk about their MSE Max, and nobody will know whether they’re talking about you or me. It comforts me to know that if they’re talking about you, it will only make me look better.
Jake, when I first saw you wearing a suit to cover a Michigan soccer game two years ago, I thought you were really weird. I still think you’re really weird, but now I’m proud to call you one of my best friends. Thanks for being a jackhammer.
My time at the Daily would be nothing if not for my fellow seniors.
Alex, thanks for the road trips to Adrian and for beating State News.
Justin, thanks for showing the younger kids there’s more than one path to success in the sports section.
Thanks, Jason, for being the only person I know who can pull off wearing a Donald Trump hat. You’ve brought a lot of fun to my time at the Daily.
To Zach Shaw, thanks for giving me a run for my money for most apathetic student in THE Stephen M. Ross School of Business. I’ll also never have to wonder which of my friends can eat the most slices of pizza, so thanks for that, too.
Lev, Alexa guaranteed we wouldn’t be friends at this point the second you were named Managing Editor. I’ve never been so glad to prove somebody wrong.
Simon, thanks for always being able to make me laugh. Texas forever.
These people are all like my family now, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank my real one. Dad, thanks for loving Michigan. I wouldn’t be here without you. Mom, thanks for finally realizing that Dad brainwashed us into coming here for a reason. Rachel will do great things here, too.
I’ll miss working for the best college newspaper sports section in America, but I love that it will continue to thrive long after I’m gone. Keep up the good work, friends.
Senior Web Developer
To the smartest team of people I’ve ever worked with – thank you for letting me teach you everything I know. And dealing with my relentless analogies to pugs and Taylor Swift. It’s the only way I know how to teach. You are an amazing team of people. Here’s to a bright future of software engineers at the Daily.
To my Hopcat partner – thank you for believing in me. This was the most exciting year of my life and you were a big part of that.
To the only girl who's ever wished I was in Colorado – you mean the world to me. Thank you for letting me be there for you and also being there for me. Thank you for being in my life.
To my oldest friend – thank you for making me laugh all these years. You’re an amazing pokémon trainer and an even better friend. Here’s to another 8 years of training EVs and killing zombies.
To the best roommate ever – thank you for living with me all these years. I couldn’t have asked for a better roommate. I couldn’t imagine enjoying my Michigan career without having someone to talk to about code. And pugs. And careers. And life. And everything. Thank you.
Managing Arts Editor
My first piece as an Arts writer for the Daily was a horrifically bad cover of a Chinese film screening that started with this pile of word-trash: “Imagine a group of elderly Chinese people, hipster college students, middle-aged film buffs and University professors, all brimming with anticipation. What could possibly have brought this motley crew together?”
The answer to that question probably should have been “the writer’s execution by firing squad,” but fortunately my then-editor Kayla Upadhyaya (channeling the saint-like patience in the face of youthful ignorance and atrocious writing that is, perhaps, the noblest trait shared by the Michigan Daily’s editorial staff) tore the piece apart instead of throwing me out on the street. When a highly reworked version finally went up on the Arts blog, I was left with the three things that have kept me going over the last three-and-a-half years at 420 Maynard and done more than just about anything else in my collegiate experience to shape me into the person I am today: intense personal shame, a byline in need of redemption and the realization that writing more was the only way to regain what little dignity I had before I started working here.
I won’t pretend that it’s all been fun and games working as a writer and editor here at the Daily – but I’m going to do my best to repress everything but the good stuff. I got to watch Mac Demarco smoke a Viceroy in the middle of a field in Tennessee, mumble incoherent praises at Reggie Watts under a Bonnaroo press tent, spend a half hour interviewing a Grammy-winning jazz pianist, quote Latarian Milton in a piece about Justin Bieber’s antics, quote Karl Marx in a 2400+ word piece on how “Hotline Bling” is a sexist iPhone commercial, and spend a month bothering Ann Arbor’s small business owners with questions about why University students don’t eat anything other than Chipotle. I also got to drink Crystal Palace and debate the finer points of modernism, Rick’s American Café culture, hipster aesthetics, FKA Twigs, surfbordts, Chance the Rapper, Left Shark, Wes Anderson, “The X-Files,” political correctness, the Beach Boys’ discography, institutional racism, the unparalleled genius of Kendrick Lamar, the “It Follows” soundtrack and Jeff Bridges’ Sleeping Tapes with some of the smartest, most cultured and good-hearted people who have ever been willing to work thirty hours a week on top of full course loads for less than $2 an hour.
Shouts out to my fellow Arts editors Chloe Gilke, Adam Theisen, Kathleen Davis, Jamie Bircoll and Catherine Sulpizio for being the inspirational squad you are, and best of luck to Adam and Kathleen as you cement your iron grip on the reins of power next semester.
Thank you to my advisor and friend Celeste Mahabir for making me go to that mass meeting back in 2012, and for being a bottomless well of irony and good advice.
Thank you to my brother Rob for the many column ideas, for your tough criticism and enthusiastic praise, and for introducing me to so many incredible people and to so much of the music that I couldn’t live without.
And, finally, thank you to my parents and grandparents for your endless love and support over the last 21 years. If you hadn’t filled your lives with so much art, music and literature, these words would be much less eloquent, nobody would be reading them, and my world would be a much darker and much less beautiful place.
It’s been lit (flame emoji).
I first entered the Daily a week before the start of classes freshman year. That summer, I had bought a camera and naively thought the Daily would let me photograph Michigan football games. (They didn’t … but I’m definitely over it now, really.) With no journalistic experience whatsoever, I was quickly sent to work for the news desk. It was one of the greatest happenstances of my college years.
It’s hard to put a finger on what makes the Daily such a special place for so many people, but as it comes to a close for the current class of seniors, I’m proud to have played a small part in the 125-year legacy. I’m also proud to have worked alongside some of the greatest people I’ve ever met — student-journalists (admittedly not journalism students, as many naturally assume) who pursue truth ambitiously for no other reason than a sense of social duty to Ann Arbor and the University. In the end, these people and their dedication are what make the Daily so impactful.
Katie: While I know “science editor” wasn’t a title that you necessarily felt the most comfortable with, you were a great advisor and helped me develop so many reporting and writing skills. Your always-positive “HR” attitude kept made the newsroom such a welcoming place.
Peter: It goes without saying that you were an inspiration to everyone who worked under you. You led our paper with professionalism and poise, and helped us understand how to deal with adversity and celebrate victories together. I feel I have grown as a leader and a person by your example.
Jen: From our first SNED meeting to the last night of production, I can safely say that you have shown the most dedication to our paper out of anyone I know. Through all the long nights, constant stress and looming deadlines, I know that you hold our paper to the highest standards of journalism and integrity. It’s been an amazing experience working so closely with you for all this time and I know you’ll be successful wherever you go after this.
Will, Sam, Rachel and Stephanie: I couldn’t imagine a more amazing and impactful group of people to work with for our SNED year. I have countless memories with each of you that have truly defined my college experience.
Natalie, Luna, Jake and Cheryll: You are the best team I could have asked for this past year at Statement. I’ve had so much fun working each week to put together this magazine. Though stressful at times, I can’t imagine a better way to finish off my career at the Daily. Thank you for your dedication, patience, and constant good humor. I wish you the best of luck in whatever ventures you pursue after this.
Ruby: I can’t begin to put into words what it’s meant to share the last year and a half together. The Daily would not have been nearly as meaningful without having you to share in the successes (or to complain to about the long hours and low pay). While the job may be at times tedious, frustrating and exhausting, I am thankful nonetheless because it gave me my best friend and partner in crime. I love you so much and owe that happiness to this amazing, crazy, horrible, inspiring, awful, powerful building and the people who call it home each and every day. Thank you Michigan Daily.
What are you doing tonight?
That's the text message, the phone call, the question that I stopped getting long ago — Sunday through Thursday, anyway. Those five nights, every week, anybody who would ever have bothered to ask knows the answer: I'm "at work."
But to call my time at The Michigan Daily "work" would be, well, poor journalism. For the last year, I've spent roughly 40 hours per week in the newsroom at 420 Maynard St. and countless more outside, all for the sake of making a newspaper. Not for one second did it feel like work.
I never knew a collection of computers, a broken water fountain, an astonishingly comfortable black couch and a few dozen squeaky chairs could challenge me the way this newsroom has. In this room, I forged friendships I have no doubt will last a lifetime. I have shed tears of joy and laughter here. Some of my proudest accomplishments have taken place in and around this room, and so have many of my life's greatest frustrations. In this newsroom, I became an adult, or at the very least, gained an understanding of the ways in which I'm still a child. I never knew a single room could be this formative.
Obviously, it's the people. It's the brilliant, dedicated and phenomenally kind group of writers, artists, editors — friends — who assemble here five nights a week to show and tell this campus and this city what it needs to know.
But I think everybody in my spectacular class of editors would agree: There's something about this place that goes beyond just us and our community. There's a sense of purpose here, a sense of meaning. It's a sense of pride and productivity I don't think I could find anywhere else on this campus if I spent a lifetime looking.
Every night, we show up with nothing. But words are written and revised, photographs taken and tweaked, headlines placed, hugs and laughs and jokes and legitimate love passed back and forth. We always finish what we started. While it's never perfect, its imperfections are strangely beautiful, and at the end of the night, what we did is done — there's no going back. By some miracle, the final product is always worthy of our pride.
Every night, for a year, we made a newspaper, and I wouldn't trade that experience for anything in the world.
The list of people I have to thank is longer than the Rick's line on the last night of Welcome Week, but I'm going to give it a shot anyway.
To those who came before me — Katie, Peter, Slov, Zach, Everett, Greg, Alejandro, Wass, Liz, Raj, Jeremy, Neal — thank you for teaching and inspiring me. To everyone I've ever shared a beat with — Simon, Alexa, Shannon, Bultman, Felds, Max, Jake, Kelly, Jacob — from disgusting Indianapolis motel rooms to a resort in the Bahamas and everywhere in between, thank you for putting up with me. Minh, Jason, Zach, Brad, Chloe, Justin — it's been a pleasure. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention two incredible SIDs, so Sarah, thanks for putting up with me, and Tom, thanks for putting up with Simon.
To Laura and Shoham and every other editor entering the best year of their life, stay incredible. Thank you for letting us leave this organization more confident in its future than ever.
I can't name all the friends I made here who I never expected could have such an outsized influence on my life. But Max, thank you for being a fantastic friend and roommate, and Simon, thanks being a fantastic friend and for letting me basically pretend to be your roommate, and to both of you, thank you for everything. Derek: Thanks for being ready to come off the bench at a moment’s notice, and thanks for being you. And to Aarica and Amabel in particular: My nights here were better because I had you to talk to. Thank you for keeping me sane. Close enough, anyway.
To Jen and Sam: I couldn't have picked a better pair of people to spend 1,000 hours in a room with. What a ride it's been. Wanna hang out next semester?
Lastly, to my family — Mom, Dad, Shira — I love you, and am more grateful for everything you've given me than I could ever express in words. Thank you for reading, for supporting me in every way and for understanding why I chose to spend a year of my life doing this. I'm not sure if it will bring you comfort that I learned more at The Michigan Daily than I ever could have in a classroom. But it's the truth.
Managing Photo Editor
My first semester at the Daily, I came within an inch of quitting. Twice.
The second time, I was riding a Blue Bus home to North Campus and trying to un-frostbite my fingers. I’d just spent three hours wandering campus in a blizzard in search of a feature photo for the next day’s paper. I was sitting on the bus, frozen, with that classic no-one-cares-about-a-tiny-black-and-white-feature-photo feeling, when my managing editor texted me. It was a picture of a photograph I’d taken earlier in the week and the words “this is beautiful.” I’d loved the photo and been frustrated when it didn’t make it to print and now Terra was telling me she was making it one of the Photos of the Week. That text, those 20 seconds out of her night, was when the Daily began to feel like a community for me. I didn’t quit, and I didn’t look back.
We all say it, but the Daily is home. I am unbelievably lucky to have found a place on campus that has both comforted and challenged me. I can hope that I’ve grown as a photographer in my three years here, but I can be confident that I’ve grown as a person. I can’t imagine a better place to learn to be a team member, a leader and both at the same time. 2016 Managing Editors, that’s the best piece of advice I can offer: always strive to be both at the same time. Respect everyone at every level; you’re all new at this. Stand up for the things you believe in; you know what you’re doing.
Ruby, we did it. Thank you for your passion and for being such a steady partner for this crazy year. I’m proud of us and so excited to sleep. Amanda and Grant, sleep is for the weak. I can’t wait to see you two kill it. You’re both talented and compassionate people; have faith in yourselves and each other.
Teresa, thank you for believing in me while I learned how to. Thank you for dancing on the copy desk and sitting in the photo closet and hug-immersion-therapy-ing me. You made the Daily a home. Peter, I’m still in awe of you. I’ve tried to emulate your grace under pressure, but I doubt I’ve come close.
Shoham, I kind of want to be you when I grow up. I’m so, so proud of you. Jake, there are 319 days until you’ll beat The State News. I’m sending game film over soon. And Max, thank you for tricking me into thinking I can take over the world. I think, maybe, I can.
Lastly, thank you to my parents for their endless support. Thanks for being as proud of my first above-the-fold photo as anything I’ve done since.
420 Maynard, thanks for having me. But mostly, thanks for letting me take so much with me.
*Gmail camera emoji*
Deputy Statement Editor
When I was a junior in high school, I had a mid-teen crisis: Did I want to go into business, or journalism? To the surprise of most people who know of my bookworm ways, I chose business. When I came to Michigan, I knew I would need an outlet from business school; a place where I could discuss social issues, where other people had read that New York Times exposé, where passions were fueled by words and art rather than numbers and efficiencies. So my first week of freshman year, I joined The Michigan Daily. I can’t begin to explain the ways in which it has changed my life.
By my count, I’ve held seven different positions during my three years and four months at the Daily. Not because I’m especially talented by any means — I’ve just never been able to get enough of this place.
I look back at my time at Michigan in terms of the Daily. First semester freshman year, the brief months I was on Design and desperately pretended to care about fonts as much as the rest of them, just to fit in. Then karaoke with Film Squad, when I learned how to drink and how to effectively argue about the merits of Wes Anderson. Sophomore year, when I became an SAE and my life changed irrevocably, when the Daily became not just an activity but a home, a prison and a fairytale all bottled into one. And this year, when I changed course entirely and joined the Statement, creating something I’m immensely proud of each week with people who consistently leave me awestruck.
I feel what I think most seniors feel leaving this place: gratitude towards how the Daily has allowed us to grow and change; deep pride in the work we’ve done everyday; shallow relief that we can return to our normal lives; fear that we will never find a place like this, with people like this, ever again.
The only thing we can do is say thanks. Thank you to Amy, Alicia, Matt and Tao, my first editors between Design and Arts: the dummies who decided to hire me. Thank you Film Squad, for being the nerdy, earnest outlet I didn’t know I needed. Thank you Surfboardt, for being my best friends and family. Thank you for handling my neuroses, and for having faith in me when I wanted to move on in the Daily. Thank you to Statement for allowing me to sing “Hamilton” non-stop and letting me headline every week. Thank you for really wanting to make a difference in what we created each week.
We really did the thing, guys. I just hope I gave a fraction to this place that I gained from it.
Managing Arts Editor
I’ve been listening to the Hamilton soundtrack a lot lately. The first act of the musical, especially, is so relatable: Hamilton and the rest of the Founding Fathers were once just scrappy kids who wanted to join the revolution and make a name for themselves. When I listen, I think of my work at The Michigan Daily — two years ago, I snapped at every opportunity I could get my name in print and was desperate to impress my stoic Managing Arts Editor. In my first few (hundred) listens of the album, I related to Hamilton most. He was ambitious and fiery, a wizard of words who couldn’t sit still or stop moving his quill.
But, as Lin-Manuel Miranda’s lyrics say, Hamilton was “young, scrappy and hungry.” The more I consider my jaded senior status and compare my attitude with those of the sweet freshmen at the weekly Arts meetings, the more I realize that my year of being MAE has changed me. I used my Hamiltonian work ethic to become the Daily Arts equivalent of President, but somewhere along those 12 months, the fire stopped burning. When you’re in a leadership role, ambition gets replaced by something more stately. I almost didn’t notice it — my year of being MAE has transformed me from Alexander Hamilton to George Washington.
I’ve been listening to one song on the Hamilton soundtrack a lot lately. In “One Last Time,” Washington tells Hamilton that he is giving up his Presidency and retiring from politics. As Washington sings in the song, he is immeasurably proud of the 45 years he dedicated to building this nation. He’s ready to move on, and America is strong enough to continue independent of his involvement. It’s time for this guy to relax: “I want to sit under my own vine and fig tree / A moment alone in the shade / At home in this nation we’ve made.”
When I look at Daily Arts, I am so proud of the nation we’ve made. DePollo has been the best co-MAE I could ask for, always balancing my penchant for enforcing the rules (then breaking them) with a steady calmness I could only hope to emulate. Jamie, the legendary Senior Arts Eagle and staunch proponent of the revolution, invested so much in the hiring and training of new talent. I am confident in the future because he had a part in shaping it. Kathleen and Catherine are wonderful and joyful editrixes, and I am lucky to have served with them. Theisen is the Hamilton to my Washington; my “right hand man” who is so much more, and so ready to lead next year.
When I stand at the front of my last Arts meeting and look at the conference room full of fresh, smiling faces, I’ll be sad that my term is ending. But it’s my time to sit under my own vine and fig tree, to spend my newly free evenings reading some books and, of course, still turning in articles for The Daily.
I don’t know how to end this senior goodbye. I don’t know how to express my gratitude to the place and the people who have shaped my college experience into something so fulfilling, so revolutionary. So I’ll let Washington’s farewell address close it out for me:
“I anticipate with pleasing expectation that retreat in which I promise myself to realize the sweet enjoyment of partaking, in the midst of my fellow citizens, the benign influence of good laws under a free government, the ever-favorite object of my heart, and the happy reward, as I trust of our mutual cares, labors and dangers.”
Thank you, my fellow revolutionaries. My talented editors. My best friends. And thank you to The Daily for letting me be part of its 125 years of editorial freedom, for offering paper for me to print my story, five days a week.
Senior News Editor
My path to the Daily was somewhat serendipitous. First semester of freshman year I was auditioning to join an improv group and naively indulging my desire to try acting. Sadly, I was not recruited by the group; they told me I wasn’t wacky enough. But they did recommend that I join the stand-up comedy group on campus, which didn’t require auditions. It was there that I met Stephanie Shenouda, another freshman who had already been working at The Michigan Daily news section for a semester. She told me how easy it was to apply and I, having always been mildly curious about writing for a paper, had her connect me with the news section staff to start the application process.
From there my path in college was set.
Writing news for the Daily felt like the most important work I could possibly be doing as a college student, and that’s why I was hooked. Working for the paper brought me perks like meeting the president of the University, learning from professors and visiting scholars that I would have never spoken to otherwise, and feeling the satisfaction of having my work displayed for everyone to see. It was addicting.
More importantly, I discovered the feeling of accomplishment when a reporter is able to coax a person to share their story and then do justice to their life in writing. This isn’t just addicting but it’s fulfilling, and it’s why I wanted to work as hard as I did for the Daily.
What’s truly remarkable about the Daily is not only that it serves as both a school and business but that the editors are such dedicated teachers. People like Rachel Premack, Jen Calfas, Adam Rubenfire, and Peter Shahin may never get credit as professors but I literally learned everything about writing a news story from these friends. Yes, teaching peers is a requirement for Daily staffers but as I now go on to pursue journalism as a career I think the individual efforts of everyone who taught me deserves my gratitude. Thank you, all.
The Daily runs on integrity. I learned that in my first year as a Senior News Editor. Working with the most passionate, creative, and intelligent people I will ever meet, I built friendships with the other editors through a common belief in hard work. From there we became just a bunch of young college kids that liked hanging out with each other. Jen, Ian, Rachel, Sam, and Stephanie are all people I am lucky to have met and honored to call my friends.
I hope I was able to give enough to the Daily to earn what I got out of it. At the very least I can say that I cherished the opportunity to serve as a teacher and took pride in providing the University and Ann Arbor community with news that mattered. What I got from the Daily was life-changing friendships, a demand for accurate reporting, a passion for storytelling, and reaffirmation in my belief that hard work matters and will repay you.
Would I have gotten all of this from an improv group? Maybe. But I’m lucky enough to have it now and I have only The Michigan Daily to thank for it.
Managing News Editor
It’s been a few years since I first learned to write a lede. Advisers, editors and internship supervisors have long indoctrinated me with the watchwords of the inverted pyramid, and I have spent plenty of reads telling reporters to move their most fundamental facts up top. So for the last couple of days, I’ve passed a lot of time trying to write a lede about my Daily experience — to identify that one most essential element that would succinctly tell readers what makes this place so special, crazy, frustrating and exhilarating all at once. I couldn’t do it, and I guess that’s because the Daily, like the stories we tell every day, isn’t really about any one thing.
The Daily is 18 hours in the newsroom vetting and preparing a months-long investigation on sexual assault at the University, and it’s also the chills running up your back as the President of the United States ascends the podium at an event you’ve been assigned to cover.
The Daily is the night spent on InDesign until 2:30 in the morning, but still wanting to make the trek to Steak ‘n Shake not because you’re really hungry, but because you want to stay with the people who work here just a little longer. The Daily is the chance to tell the kinds of stories that wake people up from their daily lives and have the power to drive real change. It’s the kind of place that reminds you every single day that people matter, and their stories do, too.
Thank you to the senior news editors: Amabel, Emma, Emilie, Michael, Shoham and Will. All of you, together with a News staff and MDesk I was lucky to work with every day, have made this year so fun and rewarding. Shoham and Emma, I’m incredibly confident leaving the Daily in your hands, and I can’t wait to see what you do. To the 2014 class of SNEds, thanks for making that year so special. Bethany and Yossi, thanks for showing me the way, and for not thinking Jen and I were too strange when we bought you fleece blankets. Stephanie and Adam, thank you for telling me about this cool place on Maynard before I even got to Ann Arbor.
To my Daily parents, Peter and Teresa, I am so incredibly thankful to have you in my life, even from afar. Your passion for this place, and your affection, have changed my Daily experience for the better.
Lev, thanks for for the 120 days of snap, but I think I like being together in person a whole lot better. Jen, from discovering a fellow journalist lived across the hall in South Quad to spending most of our days in this newsroom, I’m forever thankful. I couldn’t picture this experience without you in it.
To Nikki Schueller, thanks for introducing me to the magic of newspapers and newsrooms. Mom, Dad and Rachel, thank you for reading the Daily and never doubting my love for journalism. And to Derek and Benji, thank you for being the best roommates and friends I could ever ask for. There’s no other pair with which I’d rather wander the woods or debrief at the end of every day. And Derek, thanks for always being there for me both on Tappan and State and at the Daily. It’s made a world of difference.
For some reason, I often have less trouble writing a story’s end. That’s partly because at the Daily I’ve learned the right ending doesn’t always have to provide a tidy wrap up or deliver some kind of feel-good moment. So while the thought of returning to Wednesday nights spent studying instead of making a newspaper is certainly scary, maybe the only way to say goodbye is to take in all these moments — the big and small pieces of experience that make up the Daily — and feel thankful to have taken part. That’s more than enough.
TV/New Media Editor
When I walk into the newsroom now, I think I’d feel comfortable hugging every person. Yet, after this year, the 200 of us will probably never be in the same room ever again. Alas, the Daily all leads up to one big existential crisis.
The Daily held my hand when I wanted to experiment more with writing; it held up my head when I declared that journalism was what I wanted to pursue; and now, with a final embrace, it’s sending me off to apply what I’ve learned to the real world.
The Daily has not only been my platform to fangirl about YouTube and TV pilots; it’s given me an outlet to write about my mother’s OCD, to reflect on the trauma of the Boston Marathon bombings – to flesh out my idiosyncrasies and insecurities. The past year has been a whirlwind, from interviewing celebrities and traveling across the continent – from Playlist Live in New Jersey, to Bonnaroo in Tennessee, to Buffer Festival in Toronto. Beyond the opportunities write about my passions though, the Daily is and always will be about the people.
If you are who you surround yourself with, then I would be so fortunate to be the product of slightly insane, slightly sleep-deprived, genuinely cool people. I’ll always be humbled by trying to outwit everyone’s icebreaker responses. Poot and Left Shark will forever hold special meanings in my heart.
To my dearest Daily Arts: Thank you for holding me while I cried about graduating early. Thank you for remaining friends with me even when I fell asleep at Circus. You’ve truly seen me at my worst – but hopefully, also my best. You’ve watched me grow into a more confident, assertive leader unafraid to say “I want to be a writer.” You’ve taught me the value in being cultured, from embracing Harry Potter and Shonda Rhimes and Joan Didion, because to appreciate art is to understand ourselves a little better.
I’ll never forget the nightsides when we sat around pitching the most asinine ideas – an immersion article about Grinder, a B-side lead about weird diets – the sky’s never the limit, we told ourselves. We would hurl over in laughter writing cut lines only we would find funny, NYPD snorting from our noses.
Chloe, you were the first to welcome me into the Daily fam, even when I turned in a shallow first review of “Cristela.” You set the example of who I wanted to be as TV beat editor, and your voracious TV knowledge inspires me to further my own passion. Please still call me to fangirl about “Broad City” and “Girls.”
To TV, my love and my light: Imagining the beat in the upcoming year gives me an unrestrained FOMO and jealousy for the new coverage ahead.
To my B.A.E.s: remember that first warm day of spring we sat at Dom’s, engorging ourselves in doughnuts, sharing stories of our first kisses? Cringe. Maybe when our paths cross in the future, we’ll finally figure out how to coordinate our schedules.
Thank you to the power lady clique for showing me what it means to be badass and humble, to be feminine and a feminist. You’re a beautiful group of #ModernWomen destined for success.
Caro, thank you for feeding my reading list, for “yung” and “cunty” and other Caro-isms that have enriched my vocabulary. Always remember, adven-shur is out there.
Theisen and Kathleen, my original Tuesday nightside: Your deftness for crafting headlines, the eloquence with which you both write — I only dream of paralleling your talent one day.
Alex, I don’t think I knew how to hold a conversation before I met you. Those discussions we had on the Daily couches about writing and integrity will forever stay with me.
2Schrammz: You embody what it means to be ambitious and unashamed. I’ll miss our hour-long FaceTimes about our pipeline dreams, but I can’t wait for our futures.
My future as a journalist – that scares me. But what may terrify me more is how deeply, purely and unconditionally I love the Daily. A 700-word limit is an injustice to how indebted I am to this place. I am sickeningly lucky, and only a fool would abandon this love prematurely for the real world. But here I am, writing my senior goodbye, more grateful than any eloquence could express – stating that my only regret was not staying here longer. I love you, Daily.
Senior News Editor
I put off writing this goodbye so long that the procrastination itself became a reason not to do it. As the deadline passed and one, then two days went by afterward, I justified my failure to write this by telling myself it was too late.
I was going to do the same thing sophomore year. Everyone I knew who was succeeding at The Michigan Daily had joined right when they came to campus freshman year, and I hadn’t. When considering joining as a sophomore, I worried that that lost year would put me at an enormous disadvantage. But I joined News anyway, and it was the single best choice I have made in my life.
I’ve been trying, unsuccessfully, to write this goodbye in my head for days, maybe even weeks. I haven’t been able to find the words. And considering that my job is (was?) to find the right words, that’s saying something.
College wasn’t good until I found this place. I always felt out of sync, surrounded by people who thought I was so strange. I’d speak and people around me would give a short laugh and say something like, “You’re so funny, Amabel.” Or tell me I was “quirky.” I was floating through a world filled with awkward silences and half-understandings.
Five minutes at the News desk and I knew all of you were different. People at the Daily have an eye for irony. Readers and writers, we mock the subtle inconsistencies in the world in a way that is endlessly amusing, but only to people like us. My time here is marked with the most intelligent kind of laughter.
And that’s it. That’s all I have to say, really. Anticlimactic, I know. But endings almost always are.
Claire, I am so endlessly glad we started talking at EIC elections two years ago.
Sam, thank you for being the single kindest and most patient human being I have ever met. Shoham, thank you for conquering uncertainty through the use of the word “unclear” and brightening my nights. Lev, thank you for all of the 7-Eleven trips and for attempting to understand me.
Thank you to everyone who contributed to these 2 a.m. nights whose shadows are burned into my brain in the best kind of way. I love you all.
Senior Sports Editor
They said a kid from a suburban Denver neighborhood wouldn’t make it in the rough and tough college newspaper business. They said he couldn’t handle it. I never listened to them. Four years and nearly 150 stories later, I’d like to think I did it in the same way I ate lunch for much of elementary school — all by myself — but in reality, that wasn’t the case, and there are a lot of thank yous in order.
Thank you to Nez, for always going blue. To Helfand, for giving me my first major assignment — intramural softball — and for taking a chance on throwing me into men’s basketball when my only credentials were captaining my JV team. To Everett, for tolerating me, and giving me a nickname, which, though not flattering, made me feel cool. To Slov and JR, for breaking a window one night and turning it into a road trip to the Final Four.
Thanks to Greg and Alejandro, for not firing me. To Raj, for reminding me that I have no marketable skills. To Felds, for cuddling in Carmel. To Alexa and Summitt for laughing at my jokes.
To the photogs: P. Sherm, Patrick “Four Legs Good” Barron, Teresa “Kringles” Mathew and Allison “Jackhammer” Farrand for making my stories look a whole lot better than they read.
To The State News, for making all 5-foot-6 of me feel like a championship athlete.
Thank you to Tom, for being the “cool SID” that was totally OK with us having parties when he was out of town and totally OK with me ordering salmon during our first meeting. To that cop that wrote me up on the way to Wisconsin and the bouncer that took my ID, for trying to ruin a good road trip. Nice try. To John Lowe, for constant guidance. To Eminem, Gilbert Gotfried and Ira Glass, for passing hours in a Ford Fusion. To the Rudermans, for hosting us and hustling us in darts. To Peter, for questioning us like a pro and Katie for sitting there.
Thanks to Coach Beilein for being “so good” to student journalists.
Papa Wass, Thanks for the Memories. I remember you texting me to go for men’s basketball because it was going to be a “blood bath.” Sorry I messed that up. Thanks for fighting for me anyway — you don’t know how much I appreciate that. Let’s kill a budget sometime soon.
Neal, remember that road trip to Portugal? Still can’t believe they sent us there. Throw two kids that don’t know each other into a car to Duke, turn on some Avenue Q, and turns out they can become real pals (sorry for talking about your sister, Theo). Thanks, for talking me into London and for showing me how to appreciate it all — every map and every word of a Bo Ryan presser.
Thanks to Kessler for helping launch The Boardroom and for remembering print journalism is dying and video will take over.
To Snyder, Quinn and Dylan, thanks for a good time in the Bahamas.
To Jake, thanks for doing this for a second go around — sending prayers. Bultman, thanks for a wild time in Zona. Gase and Kelly, thanks for an even more wild time in Wytheville, Virginia. Whipple, Louisville, Minh, Chloe, Nate and all the other kids: If I’ve been a fourteenth of what the older kids were to me, to you, then that’s weird you’ve done that math in your head. Thanks for making my time here so special. You all are going to kill it. Keep it up.
To Max, Lev, JR, Justin and Shaw, Kim and Leland for being the finest looking bunch to strut through 420 Maynard since, in all reality, ’04.
Max, thanks for everything you did for this place and for always having my back.
Lev, thanks for putting up with me for four nights in the Bahamas and four years at Michigan.
Most importantly, thank you to my family. Mom and Dad, thanks for your constant support, texts to make sure I got back from North Carolina safely and for keeping up with Michigan sports just so you could talk with me about them. It means the world to me. Sam and Alana, thanks for being my biggest fans. Bue and Papa, Grandma and Grandpa, thanks for always reading and cheering me on.
Michigan Daily, thank you for bylines from Berlin and the Bahamas. Thank you for keeping me here until 3:00 a.m. on Thursdays — just kidding, I would’ve killed it at Ricks those nights. Thank you for impressing people when I tell them I write for you. Thank you for introducing me to some of my best friends. And thank you for the opportunity to write stories about a bunch of college kids turning two and bouncing basketballs — but mostly, thank you for giving me a lot of good stories to tell.
Michigan in Color Editor
While my time at the Daily has been short, it has definitely been impactful in my own development and understanding of journalism while also offering a new medium to better understand myself. It's amazing to be apart of something so big, and meaningful. I'm forever thankful for all the people who helped me out and showed me the ropes, the Opinion section, and to my MiC team who have been supportive and wonderful. Ryan, Gabby and Demario- thank you for your light and laughter. The Daily's website is now my first bookmark on my bookmark bar, so you know the love is real.
B-Side Photo Editor
Dear Michigan Daily,
Thank you for my best years at college. I joined Photostaff two and a half years ago because I wanted to pursue photojournalism, but I never expected to leave loving the place that allowed me to do so.
Thank you for giving me confidence. As a Latina on this campus I often feel that I do not have a voice. You gave me a platform to share mine through the photo stories I made. Although you are not perfect, you gave me a space to channel my thoughts on race relations and social justice.
Thank you for allowing me to see how a place can grow. In my time here video section formed and I am grateful to have been able to contribute to that innovation. I leave excited to see how the Daily will partake in the future of storytelling.
Thank you for giving me a standard of community and work ethic to set for myself in my future endeavors. Every time I am in the newsroom I am impressed by the dedication and passion my peers have for the work we do. I leave reassured of my belief that real education comes from outside of the classroom. Most of all thank you for giving me friends to spend late work nights with.
2014 Managing Arts Editor
<em>Ευχαριστώ για τις μνήμες.</em>
Daily Arts Writer
Something I wish I knew earlier is not to take one’s position at the Daily for granted. It is a privilege and a responsibility to write for this paper and you must never, ever forget that. Every single person on the Daily is a talent and a voice who has proven worthy of having a by-line. There is power in that. There is also a moral obligation to tell the truth, whatever that seems to be.
People might try to belittle the Daily, might try to say it’s just a game and none of us are real journalists. But that is an egregious lie. We are, all of us, the wordsmiths of our time and place.
If you are reading this and have been on the Daily for some years only to have a little more time left than myself, you know the advice I’d give: use it, use it to the fullest while you can. But most of all do not ignore the people to your right and left at your section desk. They are some of the most talented, hard-working and wonderful human beings you’ll encounter at this university.
If you are new to the Daily, then I’m not giving you any advice. It will be so much more rewarding for you to chart your own path at this extraordinary paper. There have been many roads that have come and gone through these doors, from Arthur Miller to Ann Marie Lipinski. But every road is different. Whichever one you choose, know this: you’re going to have the time of your life.
For me, the only thing I ever wanted from the Daily was a place I could write. It gave me more than I ever dreamed of, and I am humbled to have been a part of it, even if only for a time.
Editorial Page Editor
“Claire, do you know the only reason I hug people is because of you?”
I stared at this quote for five minutes last week, forcing myself to recall everything about the moment I said it. I was searching for a concrete lesson I could tell future staffers in this “less-than-700-words senior goodbye.”
Of course, there was nothing there. Scattered among a random assortment of objects hanging on the Opinion bulletin board, the handwritten quote stared back at me, silently.
Maybe, there wasn’t an overarching lesson; and maybe, this isn’t goodbye.
I have spent the last four (of my five) years in college at the Daily obsessing over how we present words, stories and news to the community. But, it’s not the countless articles that have tears streaming down my face as I edit this stupid “goodbye” over and over again.
It’s the people who taught me to hug. And so really, this is for them:
Adrienne, thank you for responding to my first e-mail. Melanie, for #girlsclub. Dan and Megan, thank you for showing me the “trenches” of the Opinion section. Ian, for helping me realize that deer don’t actually kill people. Ruby, thank you for sharing my extreme love of dogs, and extreme hatred for most other things. Jen, for helping me save a cat and showing me the importance of cheesy bread. Allison, thank you for shoulder dances. Laura, for camping and apples. Sam, thank you for being the most selfless person I know. Lev, thank you for too many things. Thank you Ann for being amazing.
Emily, Shane, Hannah, Jake, Max, Adam, Chloe, Amrutha, Kaylla, Katie, Gaby, Demario, Sarah, Ryan and Carolyn, thank you for being part of the best group of managing editors ever. I truly appreciate the memories we’ve shared and the things I’ve learned from each of you. To every other friend I made in the newsroom, know that I love you even though I neglected to include you here. You have changed my life, if only in a smallest way, and I’m forever grateful.
To the incredible opinion staff — Matt, Claire, Regan, Melissa, Mary Kate, Anna, Ben, Steph, Michael, Tori, all of the editorial board members, columnists and cartoonists — you are simply amazing. I can’t thank you enough for the dedication, commitment and, not to mention, friendship you have given us this past year. My heart beats with pride when I think about all the wonderful things we accomplished.
And finally, Derek, thanks for nothing.
OK, I’m kidding, but I don’t know how to express my appreciation for you without being at least a little sarcastic. (This is our relationship, we have to accept it.)
Through it all — the late night phone calls, the unpublishable columns, struggling for content, the most read list, three hours of sleep, working 40+ hours — you kept me positive and moving forward. I’m sorry for telling you “Stop,” or “I hate you,” or “You’re the worst,” and for having to spend so much time at a coffee shop. I would have much rather been at the Daily, thinking about problems in our world, and the things we can do to help remedy them.
You were my first friend at the Daily, and the best co-editorial page editor I could have ever asked for. I think our comedic, yet open demeanor really made an impact in the section. Thank you for helping me grow as an editor, leader and person, and for helping me teach others the importance of the Opinion section.
To Regan and Claire: Don’t tell Derek, but he was right. You may be the only people willing to be the 2016 Editorial Page Editors, but you’re exactly the right two people for the job.
I love you all, always. Page four for life.
Daily Sports Writer
Sometimes when I’m walking through campus, usually during the lull after sunset and before crowds hit the street for a night out, I can’t help but stop and and take in the scene. The brisk air, the soft lights and the sweeping architecture — I want to remember it all.
Walking under the arch, through the law quad or past the window of the freshman math class I should have failed is enough to overcome me physically. I have to stop, collect myself and breathe.
Recently, the same thing started happening when I walk onto the newsroom floor at the Daily. It’s a bit odd, like this goodbye, because I have a lot left to write at this paper. But I’ll take the opportunity to get a little sentimental anyways.
I started my career at the Daily — like I do a lot of things — with one foot already out the door. I don’t think I ever told him, but it was Everett who convinced me to stay. When I brought in my first story, I had never been in the newsroom during production before and he looked so busy, so unapproachable. But then Everett walked over, handed me the final of edits for my piece and pulled up a chair. He told me he liked the story and gave me a few pointers for writing in the future.
Some of those tips I still follow and some are long forgotten, but it’s that dedication to people that makes the Daily such a special place to me. I knew in that moment that Everett cared about my development as a writer, even though we’d never really met. That’s something that this paper has done right for years and continues to do well to this day.
It’s a big part of the reason that so many writers love working here. The Daily gave me another home at Michigan, and I’ll never forget that.
Thank you to everyone who’s supported me through all of college, to all the friends I’ve made, and to the people who helped me grow without even knowing it. To Mom, Dad, Nico and Gabby — I love you.
2014 Senior News Editor
My path in the Daily was a bit different from others. I had my biggest job in my sophomore and junior years, rather than peaking as a senior. By the end of my tenure as a senior news editor, my untainted love and excitement for the Daily had worn away. I was glad to know that those 30 hour weeks were over. To know that I could study or go out with my friends on weeknights, to be able to explore campus and meet new people as they had for three years. To recover from a disturbed sleep schedule resulting from 3 a.m. bedtimes and 8:30 a.m. classes. To be free of my friends turning on each other to get the next top editor spot.
And yet, I can’t picture college any other way than the way I spent it. I keep telling my friends that I’m done with the Daily. And then I keep coming back.
The ability of us, a bunch of 18- to 21-year-olds, to go to this place every night and make a newspaper for the University community is remarkable. We’re so motivated and so passionate about this paper and this institution, and that’s incredible.
I didn’t get to study abroad for a semester or join a bunch of student organizations. But I gained something perhaps more valuable. I learned how to tell important stories and meet fascinating people through journalism. I became confident that I could succeed in any difficult situation — whether interviewing Gov. Rick Snyder or finishing an article, editing shift and a take-home exam in one night.
And most of all, I met my best friends. These are the friends that people said you would make at college — the ones that change how you think and make you laugh until you cry. So, in no particular order, thank you to Jen, Allana, Schramm and Dan. Thanks to the 2014 SNEDs, for the constant sleep deprivation and drunkenness. And thank you to everyone else for being the smartest, most motivated and interesting people on this campus.
Assistant Opinion Editor
I remember reading The Daily for the first time freshman year. I remember pouring over those pages, reading articles and thinking to myself: “Someday, I want to write for this paper.”
Even with this musing in mind, I didn’t muster up the courage to go to my first Editboard meeting until sophomore year. Back then, I don’t think I could’ve even begun to imagine how much The Daily would both challenge me and feel like home for the next few years. That first meeting was the beginning of what I can only describe as three years of intimidating, unexpected and amazing experiences. Journalism was something I hadn’t had much prior experience in, and my political knowledge was definitely lacking. Yet, week after week, I was excited to go to Editboard and immerse myself in engrossing conversations where multitudes of opinions and viewpoints intersected.
For the past three years, this newspaper helped me grow as a writer and as a person. It has been the source of some of my best memories and numerous late nights. The Daily is a place where the shy girl sitting quietly on the conference room bench during Editboard can join the conversation and eventually speak in front of the entire newsroom. It’s where typing the draft of your first Viewpoint while you’re wedged next to the heater during elections can lead to your voice being heard in your own column. Here at The Daily, I’ve learned to question the world around me, and I’ve worked with so many talented and brilliant individuals from numerous sections—an opportunity I’m very grateful for.
Dan, thank you for the encouragement during my first few, self-conscious weeks as a columnist. Matt, thank you for your patience with my InDesign struggles and for answering my many questions (even when I was trying to avoid asking yet another one). To Aarica and Derek, this past year under your leadership (I mean “dictatorship” if we really want to be “transparent”), has probably been one of my favorites at The Daily. You two have been awesome EPE’s! Aarica, thank you for helping me sort through concerns I had with column ideas, taking over for me briefly in the summer and being so wonderful when I was nervous about running for Summer EPE. Derek, thank you for making production nights something to look forward to every Sunday and for being the person I could turn to whenever I had questions in the summer. Finally, to the phenomenal members of Editboard, thank you all for making The Daily one of my favorite places!
Daily Style Editor
Oh where to begin?
I could start with the copy desk, my first section at the Daily (and perhaps the most underrated). If I did that, I would have to mention how many discussions on Faulkner occurred at the desk during my Wednesday evening shifts freshman year. To which the answer may make you proud or just frightened. I could go on about the copycatz for a while, some of the greatest people I’ve had the privilege of working with. Our gelato runs even in the dead of winter, the conversations about Mindy Kaling, Wednesday night American Horror Story viewings, our hatred of the oxford comma, those would all have to be included as well.
The weather gets colder, the working nights get later, the stories get longer and the conversations get weirder, but not as weird as the ones from the arts desk … trust me.
I could write about my fellow Arts writers and editors, each one as interesting as the next. While just a short chair swivel away from copy, arts was a whole new world for me this past year. I witnessed important discussions about the merits of the baby food diet, the celestial being that is Drake and a number of things in between — needless to say I have never been bored. Thank you all for welcoming me into your circle and letting me witness the creative genius that is harbored at the (sometimes-dysfunctional) Arts desk.
To the (unofficially) official Daily Style Squad, each one of you as talented and inspiring as the next, I hope you continue to write about all things fashion, style and Kardashian even once I graduate. For now, I will keep the color-coded emails coming, because I know you all secretly look forward to their imminent arrival.
Looking back on my time here at the Daily, it’s filled with countless edits, (too) many Iorio’s runs and a lot of personal growth. To the place that taught me to find my voice, express my words and explore my passions, and to the people who helped me along the way, my mentors, my peers and my friends, you have all played a part in helping make the Daily, and Michigan, my hoMe.
To the newbies coming into the newsroom this year, it’s intimidating at first. There will no doubt be a group of people playing chair hockey (very loudly), while some artsy folk try drowning them out by playing the sensual sounds of Drake, and maybe if you’re lucky, you will even find a senior editor somewhere trying to work on their thesis while simultaneously editing for the night. No matter the scenario in the newsroom, it’s a place separated by sections, but united in pure passion. Appreciate it, relish it and take advantage of it, if not for yourself than do it for those like me who are going to miss every part of it.
I guess at this point I could end with saying goodbye, but I won’t. Instead let’s go with this — to The Michigan Daily, you will always be my haven.
2014 Senior News Editor
Historically, I’m not great at goodbyes, and the more I like someone or something, the harder it is. For once in my life, I’m actually literally speechless, which everyone who knows or has ever held a conversation with me will be able to appreciate.
I remember when my mom and I were driving up to Ann Arbor before freshman move-in, and I realized I didn’t have my Daily cover letter or resume, and I that I wouldn’t have access to a printer before the semester started. I figured the Daily would be so overrun with applicants that if I didn’t get my materials in before the semester started, I didn’t stand a chance and my life was over. Obviously that didn’t happen, because I was able to approach the Editor in Chief at Festifall and embarrass myself then too.
So began my illustrious career at the Daily, and all the breaking news, snow days, “not available for comments at this time,” SACUA meetings with varying levels of excitement, late night Pizza House orders, deadlines, headlines, and everything else that went with it. I know I wouldn’t be the person I am today if I hadn’t worn business casual to the first mass meeting and thrown myself into the Daily with characteristic intensity. I’m thankful everyday for the late nights, sleep deprivation, the messy news desk, the song “Jump on It,” raspberry Smirnoff, chair monkey, the 2014 SNEds, and all of the wonderful people I had the privilege of working with and learning from over the past three and a half years.
When I think about my college experience, The Daily will always be a big part of that, and I have the memories, old copies, and my over-worn crew neck as proof. (I even recruited a few friends and random strangers for the paper because I never shut up about how great it was.) I’m so glad that 18-year-old me was absolutely sure she wanted to be a journalist and joined the Daily (even though 21-year-old me has far fewer answers) because I’m taking on the world an entirely different person as a result.
At The Michigan Daily, I learned about friendship. I learned to fall in love with words, and learned it was OK to fall out of love with them. I learned that the mold was never going to be built 4-foot-11 for me, but that it didn’t mean I could not make my own. I learned how to fail — gracefully, I hope. I learned to move on. I learned to find my place, and how things always are for the best. I learned to be more happy than words can express.
To the fab four — Nick, Nivedita, John, Matt: we created the web team, and for that I am so proud. To my web team — Dylan, Deniz, Erik, Shahin, Diana, Alissa, Connor, Bob, Jeremy: your talent has consistently, unfailingly amazed me; thank you for validating something I so strongly believed in. You’re setting a legacy at the Daily; don’t forget that. To Max, Carlina, Ruby and Amy — you got me through so much and I learned so much from all of you and our times with the Statement, and I wouldn’t have made it without you. To Jack Bologna — you’re literally the reason I’m here. Thank you for being my first, and most memorable, mentor. Despite it all, I’ve had some of my most fun at the Daily covering student gov. with you. To Carolyn — thank you for being a better friend, and a better person, than I could ever be. To Hess — for being a friend, and a guidance.
Alejandro: There are so many One Tree Hill quotes, and so little lines on this sheet of paper. I hope I have the rest of my life to tell them to you.
Agney, Monica, Kavin, Aishwarya, Wilson: for listening to me talk about the Daily for hours, and giving me a place to escape it all. For being home.
Amma and Appa: Neegal illamal nan inke irukka matten.
I am excited for the future, but I leave feeling grateful that I owe so much of it to all of you.
Senior Arts Editrix
Being a part of the Arts section is like finding an intellectual niche in an already demanding school — a rarefied place for smart and sharp students who can’t shake the feeling that their majors won’t teach them everything. That’s the only logical reason why we blow off our Shakespeare survey class to hunt down an environmental poet or Detroit rapper or Main Street mondaine. Armed with the remnants of academia that somehow stuck — a Walter Benjamin essay, a battered copy of Ulysses, a PowerPoint on French expressionism — we wade through a morass of pop culture and find that we might have something to contribute, too. The Arts Desk is where I argued vehemently against Birdman’s Oscar win, bumbled through a review of a bad zombie show, and tried to curb my habit of quoting lefty philosophers just to prove I was smart. It’s where I was humbled by writers who justified art’s role in a STEM-centeric world with nothing but elegant prose and keen insight. It was also a place where we could encourage a humanist, progressive, tolerant brand of politics: giving groundbreaking works like Transparent or Selma deserved recognition and taking others to task for their blind spots. We found ways to talk about Alfred Hitchcock in 2015 and deconstructed rap like a 19th century poem. We lovingly obsessed over culture’s oddities, like the Left Shark that couldn’t quite shake it, and assembled the most surrealist D’art Board yet. And what else? I learned to tolerate Drake, fold some surprisingly competent paper airplanes, and, with my MAE, introduce‘storic’ into the lexicon. In short, the Arts Desk will always hold a Beyonce-shaped place in my heart.
Social Media Editor
My journey to The Michigan Daily started in 2011, almost a full two years before my college career began. Special Projects Manager Carolyn Gearig and I attended a journalism conference for high school students at the Daily that year, when we were both editors of our high school newspaper. That was when I fell in love with 420 Maynard.
(I dedicated my last column in our high school newspaper to Carolyn, too, so it’s only appropriate that I do the same here. Carolyn: I love you, and I attribute so many good things that have happened in my life to your presence in it. Here’s to a lifetime of friendship, journalism, and hating Troy.)
My journey at the Daily has been inconsistent at worst, well-rounded at best: I spent my freshman year highly dedicated to News (miss you, Flame), then quickly got burned out and took almost a full two semesters off, at which point the amount I missed the Daily began to heavily outweigh the amount I was crispy.
Cooling off from well-done to medium rare, I joined the arts section as a music and blog writer. Some of the best writing I’ve ever done was through Arts; Adam DePollo, thank you for being such a good editor, pushing me to write more, and always being encouraging and supportive.
But, the place I really belonged was the Social Media team. For starting the team and bringing me back into the Daily, I’d like to thank Austen Hufford and Brianne Johnson. Austen, you will probably always be one of the most innovative people I’ve ever met. Brianne, thank you for all your hard work and for guiding me into the role you pioneered so well.
Considering I was in charge of Social for the previous two summers as well as Winter and Fall 2015, my reign as an editor has lasted much longer than most others’. It’s been a long two years — I’m definitely moving back towards blackened — but they’ve also been the two years of my life where I have probably grown the most. I learned how to lead, how to work with others, and how to not give up on my ideas. To my team, present and past, I can’t thank you guys enough for sticking with me when I was trying to figure things out. I still haven’t really done that. Emma Sutherland, I know you’re going to do an amazing job leading the team, and I’m so excited to see where you take it.
Amrutha Sivakumar, thank you for being my friend and also someone who would tell me the truth no matter what. I couldn’t image my college experience, Daily or otherwise, without you.
Stephanie Shenouda, thank you for agreeing to live with me for the past two years; it’s been a blast. I’m so happy freshman me made that decision to join News so that we became friends.
Joshua Poirier, thank you for listening to me bitch about and also highly praise the Daily almost every single day. Although we aren’t together anymore, you and the Daily were the two most important things in my life for most of my college career.
Again, Carolyn, thank you for always being there. I’m honestly not sure I would have made it through this Daily ride without you.
And, finally, thank you to The Michigan Daily for giving me something to pour my heart into for four years. While I’m excited I can go back to using oxford commas, I’ll always think of you when I do.
Senior Sports Editor
It was during my first lecture at college when I realized my dream of becoming a vet was a tad misguided – or completely misguided. Mitosis, meiosis and phylogenies were just not that interesting and, frankly, I just didn't care. And that’s when I got involved at the Daily.
I figured I wanted to do something with sports, but was never particularly excellent at any. So I took a chance and walked into the Daily, hoping to just write about them. It's wild to think that I’m now leaving four years later having traveled the country with the hockey team and over 100 of my own bylines.
The Daily certainly came with ups and downs.
There were the times when a certain PR woman calls you for 30 minutes to berate you because a story that was factually correct. I will always maintain that the 2013 women’s tennis team underachieved. There were times when you have to drive through the middle of night in hazardous icy-road conditions. And other times when you frantically call an Uber to make the team plane before takeoff.
So thank you Mom, Dad and Stefanie for pushing me throughout these four years and at least pretending to read my stories. I wouldn't have been able to do this without you.
Jared, Brad, Dave, and friends: Sorry I wasn’t around as much as I would’ve liked, but thanks for listening to all my stories about the Daily.
Jill, thanks for putting up with me while I complained about the Daily. You were always my priority, even if it didn’t always seem like it.
Erin, Jeremy and Zach – hockey beat 2k15 – I’ll always remember the road trip to my house in Northbrook and watching your faces after my mom showered you with Jewish goodies, or spending three straight days at the Joe Louis Arena with Jeremy and Zach.
To Minh: there isn’t a person I’d rather share obscenely expensive beer in Cambridge than you.
To Red, Jeff and the hockey team: Thank you guys for allowing me to tell your stories. It was a blast.
Finally, I will always cherish the relationships I’ve formed at the Daily. Slovin, thanks for letting me watch the Blackhawks game on your computer. Without that moment, I don’t know if I’d be writing this. Everett and Zach, thanks for ripping my stories to shreds: I am better because of that.
Thank you, Michigan Daily.
Daily Sports Writer
Beat State News.
Michigan in Color Editor
2014 Managing Design Editor
I almost didn’t write one of these things. My time at the Daily felt like it ended last December, more so than now. Now, I am an editor for Michigan in Color and I will continue to be next semester. But here I am, writing this goodbye because, for all intents and purposes, a huge part of my Daily life is over. Last December, I ended my time as one of the two Managing Design Editors. And then I ran away. To Spain. Because being abroad was pretty much the only way to deal with not working at the Daily anymore.
My first semester at the University of Michigan didn’t go so great. I was struggling to accept that I actually didn’t want to pursue medicine, let alone neuroscience, despite having spent almost every year since sixth grade positive of this career goal. I was living in an apartment on North Campus, without a roommate, not knowing anyone from my hometown, not knowing anyone, period. I was far from home, and I was starting to seriously consider transferring (spoiler alert — I stayed!).
In November of that first semester, I was voicing these doubts and concerns to another North Campus survivor that I would end up living with the following year. She told me she had just started writing for the sports section of The Michigan Daily, and that I should consider joining. I had been the Managing Editor at my high school paper-turned-magazine, and figured I’d give it a try. I applied to Design, thinking I knew enough Photoshop from messing around with it when I was younger to hide the fact that, even though I was completely in charge of layout for my high school publication, I didn’t really know anything about InDesign and had never even opened Illustrator before.
Alicia and Amy let me shadow as much as I needed, and gently teased me for taking extensive notes when I came in to shadow 1A, and I started to feel a little more okay. I kept working in Design, feeling unbelievably proud when I finished my first solo illustration, and feeling insanely intimidated when I went to “Dining Hall Thanksgiving” with the current EIC. But, it was okay. Here was a group of people who didn’t care that I spent my whole life planning to be a neurosurgeon only to completely breakdown in the middle of my first semester at college, who were happy to drive me back to North Campus so I wouldn’t have to take the bus by myself, who didn’t care that I joined a bit later in the semester, who asked me about my day, who cared about how I was doing, who made me feel a part of something meaningful. And it was okay.
When I became Managing Design Editor, I didn’t realize what I was getting myself into. I didn’t realize I would grow as close as I did to people in every section, I didn’t realize I was giving up my sanity for something that none of my non-Daily friends could understand, I didn’t realize I was giving my heart and soul to something that would need me to leave after just two semesters. Part of me thinks that I was so excited to become a Michigan in Color editor for this year because it meant that I would get to return to the newsroom (of course, a bigger part of me knows that most of that excitement came from having the chance to contribute to such an incredibly section). Which is why this senior goodbye is so strange to me. I’m writing the goodbye I didn’t get to write last year, but I’m also writing this goodbye to everyone who I’ve worked with this semester, and to all of my seniors that I won’t be seeing at the Daily come January. But, as I learned after being away for a while, it’s never goodbye when it comes to the Daily. Not really. There is no leaving a place that has inhabited such a huge part of your life, even if you wanted to.
To Alicia, Amy, and Kristen, even though you might not read this because you’ve moved on to bigger and better things, thank you for believing in me, for welcoming me into Design, for supporting me and encouraging me to put everything I had into our section. To Nick, I will never, ever forget shadowing you when you were designing an election-related B-Side cover and I will always remain in awe of your talent. Caro, Caro, Caro. I couldn’t have ever asked for a better co-MDE. You are my better half, forever and always. Shane and Emily, we left Design in great hands with you and I am so proud of everything you both have accomplished. Teamat, I know you probably will read this even though you too have moved on to bigger and better things because no one understands just how much the Daily can never leave you more than you. Thank you isn’t enough. Nothing is ever enough to say everything that you mean to me, that you did for me. You saw me through the best and worst parts of my year as MDE, and you understood me when I was at the best and worst parts of my feelings for our publication. You were (are) an angel for me. Thank you. Peter, I also expect you to be reading our senior goodbyes because it is just who you are. Thank you for being the greatest EIC I could have asked to work for. O Captain, my Captain (so happy we made you watch that clip before our last night at the Dails). Jen, you killed it this year. I was staying very updated while I was abroad and I came back to see all of the great things you had done and continued to do. Thank you for helping MiC transition this semester, thank you for being an amazing EIC for us. And, finally, to the Daily. To my home away from home. To the building that I spent more hours in than my own home, where I had breakdowns and celebrations, where I danced on the copy desk and yelled at the sports bros, where I spent late nights and early mornings, where I helped make the greatest paper ever, thank you. Like I said, there is no saying goodbye to you, because when it comes to the Daily, you can never really leave.
Managing Photo Editor
I’m not sad.
I’ve been thinking about writing this senior goodbye for a long time. I’ve thought about all of the sappy memories I would include, but then I realized, I’m not sad.
Yes. I’m leaving the Michigan Daily behind. But not really.
It’s been a long run. I joined the Daily the first semester of my freshman year. I didn’t actively know that I wanted to be a photojournalist at the time, but the Daily grew to be something I thought about once a week to something I thought about all of the time. Three and a half years later, I’m leaving the Daily behind but I’m taking so much from it.
Instead of being sad, I’m just grateful.
I’m grateful for all of the relationships I’ve made here. To all of my staff, I’m so proud of what our photo team has become and what it will continue to grow into. To Erin and Adam, for creating paths that inspire me and for continuing to be mentors even after you graduated. To Terra, for letting me live with you one summer and for teaching me how to be an IPL. To Luna, Virginia and James, for being kick-ass senior editors and incredibly talented photographers that make me so proud of our staff. To Allison, for taking this journey with me as MPE and for pushing me to improve as a photographer by setting such a high bar. To Sam, for always being positive and inviting me on so many adventures. To Carlina, Max, Amy, and Amrutha, thank you for teaching me how much fun a night of production can actually be and for all of the creativity and thoughtfulness that was put into every magazine. To Aarica, for becoming a close friend who I can always depend on for kind words and funny dog pictures. To Will, for your humor, compassion, fun times and friendship. To Ian, I’m so happy that the Daily brought us together and that we grew to be so much more, thank you for keeping me sane and for being my best friend.
The relationships I’ve made in this building won’t disappear even though my nights spent at production are over. The skills and lessons I learned from my time working at the Daily are going to stay with me. I’m just taking the next step in the journey the Daily forged for me.
Thank you 420 Maynard for everything, and goodbye.
Editorial Page Editor
They say it takes a village to raise a child. That’s certainly true at the Daily, but instead of a child, it’s an emerging adult trying to write half-decent articles, edit well, and ultimately become a better person because of it (or something like that).
There are so many people I need to thank for making what I described happen, but I have too few words to describe the gratitude I have for all of them. So this was the best I could do, but know you all deserve so much more.
Adrienne, I’ll never understand why you approached about being an editor. But I’m so glad you and Melanie did. Because doing so gave me, that shy kid, a college experience I could never have dreamed of having. Thank you so for seeing something in me — something I didn’t see in myself.
Dan, I’ll never forget the good old days of running the blog together. Just knowing how much you cared about this place inspired me over the past year more than you know. Thank you for everything.
Matt, you made the first semester as EPE incredibly fun. Thank you for keeping me sane.
Editboard, you’ve changed a lot over the years. Even though you gave me a lot of reasons to never come back, I’m so thankful I did. To everyone who came this past year, thanks for putting with me and laughing at my jokes, even when they might not have been that funny. I’ll miss you.
Claire and Regan, you two are amazing and the section couldn’t be in better hands. You’re going to hate a lot about the job — the late nights, rewriting editorials and dealing with plenty of emotionally-charged issues. But it’s all worth it. You’ll be sitting at the Daily a year from now wondering where all the time went. Thank you for all that you do. It means the world.
Managing editors, the Washtenaw Watchdawgz if you will, you all made this year so fun. Let’s all stay friends for a while. And thanks for staying my friend after my White Elephant debacle.
Jen and Lev, thank you for being so supportive during times of need. And thanks for being awesome friends too.
Aarica, I don’t know where to begin. You’re my Daily everything. We’ve dealt with a lot together, all with the perfect amount of sarcasm. I can’t believe it’s been a year since we started this adventure; it went by way too fast. I can’t say thank you enough for putting up with me, especially since I know I can be difficult sometimes. When I look back at our time as EPE, I have so many amazing memories, and I’m so happy you’re in so many of them. You’re the absolute best.
Sam, living with you as we’ve pursued our Daily endeavors has been wonderful. You’ve been part of my daily life and Daily life. From the late nights at home talking about the Daily, the drives to and from the Daily, the events we’ve hosted in our apartments, Mackinac and Obama, it’s been quite the ride. Thank you for always being there when I needed you. Now, I hope we can find something besides the Daily to talk about next semester.
Mom, Dad and Sandy, thanks for supporting me throughout my whole Daily life. Thank you for answering all my phone calls and listening to me complain about basically everything. I love you all so much.
And lastly, Ethan, working at the Daily has been a life-changing experience. I’ve met my best friends here and had my most fun times in college. I hope it’s the same for you and more.
So this is the end, I guess. The Daily prints a lot of words every day, and there isn’t one I can pick that encapsulates my love, admiration, and infatuation for this institution and the people who inhabit it. It’s hard to believe I’ll ever work somewhere with so many brilliant people who care so much about what they do. Special doesn’t begin to describe it.
All I had wanted when I joined the Daily was to write a column. I’m leaving with so much more. Daily, thank you so much for letting me be myself.
When I first joined the Daily, I really didn't think I was in any way qualified to write for a daily publication. I had some classical training in piano, and I constantly had my headphones in, but never took classes to learn about music. My technical knowledge of the music industry was, as implied earlier, very limited. And today, it is still fairly limited. Today, I still have to look up a lot of phrases, band names, production techniques and artist anthologies in order to stay as up to date as my co-workers. I read the phrases and writing styles of other music writers, and I tried to emulate them. I worked to find my voice, an over enthusiastic, at times far too emotionally connected one that felt true to me and my undying appreciation for music.
From working at the Daily, I learned to find confidence in the things I found interesting. By surrounding myself with curious, intelligent and opinionated individuals, I was presented with a platform for true self-expression. That self-expression materialized in various ways. Most of the time it appeared, as it should, in my writing. For whatever it could or might be worth, I found out how I like to write. I found how I like to describe a song. I realized that the best music writing is when you can empower your reader, whether for worse or better, to pick up their headphones and try something new.
This self-expression also manifested itself in the friendships I found at The Michigan Daily. The Arts Section holds some of the brightest and delightfully strange people I have ever had the pleasure of getting to know. They've added glitter to my Sundays, and laughter to my Mondays. They have encouraged my madness. They have listened to my experiences, and they have shared with me their own. They have given me laughter, glitter, and depth. They have taught me the importance of fetishes. They have allowed me to fail. They have helped me through my mistakes. They listened as I confused Miss. Marple with Ms. Marvel for over 20 minutes.
I have been able to watch writers grow, gain, and explore their talents. I have watched as one of my best friends, the brainy and beautiful Claire Bryan, reach up and up to achieve all that she deserves. I have watched Mr. Adam Theisen, the talented and loving guy who gave me the gig, transcend many others with his writing: You're going places, Addy T, I don't have one doubt about that. I have watched three-week-old pizza rot before my eyes on the Arts desk as I racked my brain for concluding sentences to some dumb album review. I have seen so much, and yet nothing at all.
I have found that, throughout my life, I have been on this quest for "weirdos like me." It's not an intentional habit. I'm not trying to weed out flocks of people for the friends (except for you, Alex Bernard, I've been trying to get rid of you for over a year now for God's sake will you take a hint). I just enjoy people that appreciate the peccadillos, or that at least search for them, in another individual. I love those ambitious individuals, the ones who have no idea who they are, but know what they want to become. I adore those people who don't fear the absurd, but, rather, they embrace it. The Michigan Daily, and the Arts Section in particular, dropped these kind of people in my lap a year and a half ago. And my lap has been all the better ever since.