- Teresa Mathew and Paul Sherman/Daily
BY DAILY CLASS OF 2014
Published December 9, 2013
Senior News Editor
In my two years working at the Daily, I got to interview fascinating people, write over 100 stories, and cover the President — twice. To say that I had some great experiences would be an understatement. As a reporter, I’ve had the opportunity to learn about more subjects, people and issues than most students, and I’m so grateful for that, as well as for all of the people I’ve met along the way. One of the best parts of this job is realizing just how much there still is out there — how many stories to tell, and how much room there is to grow not only as a journalist, but as a person. It was an honor to work with all of the talented, slightly crazy people at the Daily, especially my fellow SNEds and the rest of the news team. I learned more from you all than in any classroom.
To Andrew/Drew - Even though you still don’t know my name, I’ll miss your fake phone calls and innuendos. To Flame - I’d be lying if I said you didn’t drive me crazy some nights, but your excitement and passion for news has had a tremendous impact on me. You’ve taught me so much, and I appreciate having you as my mentor more than I can say. To KC - We did it! I can’t wait to celebrate with you next semester. But please, no more tripping in front of Tim Hardaway Junior. To Twiz - You were a great Sunday nightside partner last semester. Have fun in England, but don’t forget about your SNEd family in the states! To Peter - Seems like just yesterday I was learning how to write a news story with you as my guide. Now you’re the new Editor-in-Chief and I know you’ll make news proud. To KGB - Sunday/Tuesday nights just won’t be the same. You’re going to be an awesome Managing Editor, and if you ever need someone to babysit Sir Richard or Mr. Sip-o-saurus next semester (or if you need a date to formal) hmu. And finally, to Adam - Thanks for offering to drive to Eastern Michigan University sophomore year, it made all the difference.
I've always had a short fuse. I was a terror as a kid: If I didn't get my way — whether it was wanting to ride in the front seat of the car or eat an entire bag of chips before dinner — I'd throw things as hard as I could at the front door in outrage. I wish I were joking, but I'm not. (I've since apologized to my parents; they forgive me.) The point is this: I'm easily frustrated. And, so, a lot of my time at the Daily was spent complaining about pretty much everything, from articles with horrendous comma splices and questionable word choice (although, admittedly, it was my job to do so), to the fact that the only way I'd be able to get the next ten pages of my thesis done would be to get up the next morning at 6, meaning I'd be subjecting myself to four hours of sleep yet again. This semester, I was a little more jaded than I wanted to be, and I realize that only now.
So, this is as much an apology as it is a goodbye. I'm sorry for acting like I resented something that, in fact, I loved (Love? Can I still use present tense?) very much. I found a lot of things at the Daily: a strong love for editing, a burning hatred for inDesign, an unexpected affinity for Kerrytown. I discovered that, if I put my mind to it, I really could eat Chipotle five times a week. I realized that my intense fondness for the Oxford comma would never change the AP Style Guide (or the Daily's, for that matter), and that an empty newsroom is the perfect early-morning study spot. And I found remarkable people who are remarkably brilliant and remarkably dedicated to what they do. I'm humbled by the people I work with and by the tremendous effort they put in to produce quality content night after night.
When I walked into the Daily my freshman year, I was just hoping that I could finally correct people's grammar without them wanting to wallop me in the face (they still do, for the record. Well, want to, that is; nobody has actually done it, yet). I'm walking out now, three years later, with incredible experience and irreplaceable friendships. And, hey, knowing me, I'll probably spend a big chunk of next semester throwing objects at my front door, complaining to my housemates about how all I want is to be in that newsroom for just one more night.
Daily Arts Writer
If I have one regret that I’ll readily admit, it’s not having joined the Daily sooner. It took me almost a year to apply after a good friend highly, highly recommended it, and since I’ve been a part of the paper I’ve learned more than I thought was possible – even at Michigan. I’ve published articles that I never thought I could be as proud of, and been given opportunities I’d never dreamt of.
I believe you’d be hard-pressed to find as eclectic and hardworking an entirely student-run group anywhere, especially one as welcoming, helpful and friendly as the Daily staff. With everyone’s goal seeming to be to create the best paper possible, both by creating and helping others write interesting, insightful and high-quality content, it’s no surprise that 420 Maynard is a second home to many.
It’s been a pleasure and a gift working with everyone on staff. I’ve made some amazing friends and met some of this campus’ best and brightest, and wish the current and future generations of writers and editors nothing but the best of luck in continuing this awesome tradition.
Senior Arts Editor
When I was a freshman navigating the avenues of Festifall one day, I happened upon a stall that caught my attention, and — with just a minute or two until my class would begin — I hurriedly scribbled my name on the sign-up list. In the following weeks, I received a few e-mails from the Michigan Daily, but being rather distracted that year, the messages remained unopened.
About a month later, my curiosity got the best of me one afternoon and I skimmed over the most recent communication. The last mass meeting of the semester happened to be that night — without going, I can’t be certain that I’d ever have applied to be a writer until it was too late.
Long story short: I ended up throwing on a jacket and sprinting out the door, and four years later, that sprint to the Daily’s building on Maynard (from Oxford!) turned out to be the defining moment of my time at Michigan.
Until the opportunity itself fades, it’s never too late to grab a hold and hang on until the ride ends, as long as you throw yourself into it. And with the friends and memories I made at the Michigan Daily, I’m so grateful I caught on to this timeless publication.
Daily Arts Writer
To all the people I knew in Daily Arts in my time, thank you. To everyone I worked with in Summer Daily, you’re all amazing and our blanket forts are sealed in Daily history. It was an incredible time. It was a scary time. And it was always a super fun time that I’ll never forget. I am eternally grateful to have found 420 Maynard while at the University of Michigan. Thank you so much.
Daily Staff Photographer
I’ll never forget the first few Michigan football games that I attended as a fan (I was about nine years old). Fast forward 12 years later, and I can say that I will never forget the first time I photographed a Michigan football game with the Michigan Daily. I’ll never forget the time I travelled to the legendary Slippery Rock University to photograph one of their football games, or my trip to Minnesota to shoot my first basketball game, or Iowa (twice, two weekends in a row), and then there’s the time I almost got hit by a puck shooting a hockey game at Ohio State. The opportunities that the Daily has given me have been unreal. I’ve always wanted to travel but could never afford it. I can never express how thankful I am for every travel opportunity I’ve been given.
I joined the Daily at the end of my sophomore year on a whim. Photography had been a hobby of mine for quite some time and I applied thinking “this will be fun and give me something to do over the summer.” The summer staff consisted of about 20 people, leading to quite the surprise when I walked in for the fall semester to see 200 people. Balancing engineering and Daily photography has been tough, but looking back I can never say it wasn’t worth it. The people I’ve met, the things I’ve learned, and the experiences I’ve had have been more fun (and stressful at times) than I ever imagined. I only wish I would’ve joined sooner. Thank you, Dad, for letting me borrow the camera for the first time at that air show a few years ago. That changed my life way more than I ever imagined it would. And thank you to everyone on staff who helped make the last two years wonderful.
Oh, and did I mention that this is the first time I’ve ever actually written anything for the Daily?
Community Culture Editor
I spent the last four semesters talking to cool people doing cool stuff. All props to them. Thanks.
Managing Design Editor
In just a short year and a half, The Daily has become a place of employment and extreme stress, but ultimately satisfaction during my college career. As a dual-degree student, I found it hard to find friendships among my classmates who took all their classes together while I was struggling to name even a few people for most of my schedule. When the opportunity came to take a leadership role at The Daily, I jumped in enthusiastically without looking back.
I can’t say that I’ve completely mastered time management, or that I’ve learned to work positively with every archetype in the workplace—but I’ve grown as a designer and friend more than I could have imagined. Sure, it wasn’t the best receiving backlash about the "’Til Rick’s do Us Part" website I made in one night, or staying up Thanksgiving evening working on a football preview illustration, or having to stay at 420 Maynard night after night until 2 AM to produce the paper. But I learned the ins and outs of every program I’ll need to use for my future career in advertising, made some awesome infographics, sang some horrible karaoke with my staffers, and met some of the most talented people on this campus. I’m honored to call them my colleagues and friends, and I’m looking forward to reading headlines about them in the future, as well as noticing their bylines in renowned papers across the country.
I’d like to say thank you to Nick Cruz, my Co, who stepped up to do this job with me as a freshman. You have amazing talent, and I know The Statement will look beautiful with you behind it. And thank you to Todd Needle, who admitted he had to puke at the Detroit Journalism Conference and became a first friend and welcoming smile at the newspaper. Finally, thanks to Andrew Weiner, whose positivity and exemplary leadership kept me sane and able to produce my best work. To the rest of the staff, it has been my pleasure working with you and thanks for making me feel a part of something important.
Senior Copy Editor
To the incoming and future Daily staff,
Don't let the pressure of fitting in in the outside world keep you from finding your home here. Don't be afraid to try new things, work for other sections, and ask the questions you've been choking down, because you only get this experience once. After you let the Daily engulf you, you'll find some of the most interesting and inspiring people, thoughtful conversations, side-paining laughs, and a unforgettable nights. This place really becomes home. I learned so much about what I want to be, who I want to be, and what I love to do within the walls of 420 Maynard St. To be a part of this process was an absolute pleasure. It's been real, TMD.
Managing Sports Editor
I sometimes wonder if people understand how crazy it is for a bunch of college kids to come out with a newspaper every day, for 22 year olds to run a website that got 1.1 million page views in November while still being, you know, students.
A lot of my friends outside this place don't really get it. I'm not sure I do either.
The Daily, amidst road trips and production and arguments, is madness more than anything else, but I wouldn't trade that madness for anything. No matter what life brings, this place — this tiresome, dirty place — will always hold a special spot in my heart.
I hope the last four years have been as good for you as they have been for me. Thanks for reading.
Good-byes have a bad way of getting gooey and self-involved. So let me try to cut my part of this good-bye as short as possible: Today I look back on my earlier days of writing. I see a boy. He sits in the dark of a room at a desk, a sweat on his back, writing stories no one but him will ever read.
Now, I look at the Daily. A place full of people of a certain level of quality that I doubt I will encounter again anytime soon. Full of friends who read my work when forcing others to read a paragraph seemed presumptuous. I want to thank every one of you. I regret only that I did not take all the time I could have to know you all. But I want especially to thank Film Squad.
You so-pretentious-it-almost-hurts, karaoke-howling group of geeks.
I dislike the use of ‘farewell’ and ‘so long’ and ‘good-bye.’ Their meanings have a sense of finality I find too dramatic to be applied to life as we experience it. We may (and probably will) meet again. So let’s not call this ‘good-bye.’ Let’s call this a preemptive moment to say a few things:
I do not fear for your future. I leave you in good hands. The Daily will move forward. This next semester will pass and I will be gone and you will continue to write as well as you ever had before. I envy your talents. I’m grateful that we sat in the same dark-turned theater, that together we watched the stories shining up on the huge expanse of screen with a feeling that it all somehow mattered.
Each week from here on that I do not read and edit your articles, I will treasure those times a little more.
Daily Arts Writer
Where to start? From writer, to editor, to writer again, Daily Arts has always given me a little chunk of my own space to geek out about TV. For awkwardly accepting my awkwardness, for putting up with my profuse love of the comma, for helping me express my inner snark with at least a little bit of eloquence — thanks for everything, Daily Arts. You give good paper.
Managing Photo Editor
Every evening during the school year there is a special aura about the newsroom at 420 Maynard. Being surrounded by a group of people who are so passionate about a common entity creates a unique feeling that I have not found anywhere else. Before joining the Daily I have never met or had the privilege of working with a group of people who are so dedicated to their work. Working in an environment that cultivates creativity I have had multiple once-in-a-lifetime opportunities to explore photography and delve deeper into the art of journalism. I have learned more from my friends and colleagues at the Michigan Daily than from any other group of people I have ever had the pleasure of being associated with. Growing up, journalism was never a field I knew much about or really had much interest in. That all changed when I came to the Daily and I am thankful for finding a place that enabled me to grow as an individual. Looking back it would be extremely difficult to imagine my college career without the Daily.
I have made some of the best friends I could ever hope to have because of this newspaper. I couldn’t be happier that Carl Levin decided to speak at Eastern Michigan University back in February of 2012. Without that wonderfully misguided trip I would not have met and gotten to know Alicia. I hope to go on many more trips with you. To my wonderful Co-Managing Photo Editor, Terra, working with you was an absolute pleasure and you quickly became one of my best friends. The Daily would not be the same without you. To photostaff and all of my other friends at the Daily I know you will continue to do great things and inspire those around you.
Sitting here writing this “senior goodbye,” I oddly feel more pressure for perfection than any other piece I’ve written for The Michigan Daily. I’m not breaking any news, describing a new initiative on campus — it’s just me, writing about the newsroom and the people that defined my college experience.
This isn’t something I want to be cliché, where I go into how I almost didn’t join the Daily three times. Then I describe — in great poetic detail — my feet slowly moving up the steps to the newsroom, and how it feels like home every time I walk through those doors and see the people I’ve grown to love as friends and colleagues.
I want it to be serious, to show how the Daily taught me what I want to do with my life and that we can make a difference as journalists, like the Daily alums before us. But it’s got to be funny too, where I crack a joke about almost not joining the Daily because I wanted to try out for a hip-hop crew, thinking my duty at Michigan was to grace the Power Center stage with my pop, lock, and drop it.
I’ve started drafting this “goodbye” in four different ways, mixing the above ideas. And then I sent it to Bethany Biron, my good friend and first editor at the Daily to see which she liked best. It was a Daily moment at its finest.
The Daily is the team. It’s the people that work together to put out the paper five times a week, helping each other create the best possible product because, in the end, it’s what we all want. We’ve helped each other become journalists, columnists, photographers, and designers, all because we want to see this paper succeed. It’s the most encouraging yet high-stress environment, and I’ve loved every second of it.
To my family — thank you for reading all my stories and supporting my Daily career. Mom and Dad, without your support to go to the University of Michigan, I wouldn’t have found the Daily and what I wanted to do with my life. Dad, you always said college is the best four years of your life, and I think the Daily made that more than true for me. I hope you never unsubscribe from the Daily newsletter I signed you up for without your knowledge.
Thank you to everyone at the Daily for giving me the chance to work with you in this newsroom. I had the opportunity to take risks, succeed and grow from failures these past four years. Mostly, I had the privilege to learn from all of you.
This is difficult to write because (cue cliché) I don’t think words can do justice to my experience at 420 Maynard. There’s no perfect way to say goodbye, to describe what The Michigan Daily means to me. These people, this newsroom, this experience — it means everything to me. And though I “say goodbye,” I’m not leaving it behind. None of us ever will.
Managing Sports Editor
You know those winter days when the cold inexplicably snaps and the campus explodes? Usually happens once a year. You know what I’m talking about — when campus seems ready to explode, and everyone is drinking on the lawns and tanning on the roofs and walking around and throwing footballs.
Those days, always, are the best days of the year. And I missed them every time. I couldn’t get drunk on the lawn during the day and throw footballs. I was at the Daily. I had to edit and write and make a paper. And, I thought, that sucked.
It did suck. But as I sit and write this now and try to keep my heart from beating out of my chest, you know what? How you felt on those days — that’s what working at the Daily was for me for three and a half years.
So Nithin and Theo and Jake and Bausch and all, sorry I wasn’t always there to hang out. I love you all for understanding I wasn’t ignoring you. I was doing what I love.
Sharon, if you’re the only person who reads my articles (and you might be) that’s more than enough for me. I’ll choose you always, even over the Daily, even though sometimes it doesn’t seem like it.
I wish my memory were better. It’s frustratingly selective. I’ll always have dog sledding and the aurora in Alaska with Slov, and the UP with the crew and losing drunk Ben on New Years on the streets of Tampa. I’ll remember four years of State News game wins when I’m old, long after the other memories have faded.
But more than those, I want the days when I would come in and just listen to Nez, Nicole, Joe, Florek, Burns, Cass, Chantel and Kartje. I idolized you guys. I want my first day at the Daily, my first chat with Red. Those are gone, and that is sad. But the people are what matters.
Spar, sorry Steph rejected the @GotGott twitter handle. It could’ve been big.
Tim, if I know anything, it’s because of you.
Everett, I couldn’t have asked for a better guy to do this with. Thanks for being my friend.
Mom and Dad, you paid for my gas and my summer housing and never complained that I wasn’t around enough. Thanks for letting me do what I love.
To Neal, Wass, Liz, Slov and all the kids, I’m so incredibly proud to have my name next to yours each day. We made a great paper every day. That’s special.
It’s a Saturday night now, and I’m sitting at home finishing one last story. In a few days I’ll have to go to the Daily and say goodbye. It’s cold out now and dark and I know I’m not ready, but it’s my time.
Senior Arts Editor
Carolyn Klarecki called me in August 2010 to announce that I'd been accepted to Daily Arts. Yes, August; I was overly enthusiastic, even for a freshman. But, damnit, I thought I was going places -- that place being 420 Maynard, where every upperclassmen editor seemed to tower over me, as intimidating in their assumed wisdom as their so-very-adult facial hair. Sometimes I wonder if I can even compare, if I've succeeded at appearing even remotely well put-together for our hordes of experienced, new and talented Arts writers (my babies!). If so, that's awesome, though mostly an illusion.
The Daily gave me something to be proud of when I really needed it, and I think I might be more thankful for that than anything else. Though I've learned to trust my ability to write and (hopefully) write well, I couldn't compose half a tweet to express the amount of gratitude I have for the experiences and people here at The Daily that have made my four years in the newsroom amazing and often exhausting: hearing Jamie Block tell me that I was ""impressive for a freshman,"" drunk-dialing Sharon Jacobs to question her about my stupid, unpublished notebook about Tumblr the night that Arts huddled in Leah's living room to watch ""In Bruges,"" staring wide-eyed as some kid at a party told me that he and his roommates had taped one of my reviews to their wall (seriously?), sipping and hating chocolate wine at the Daily Arts pre-game where I first talked to Anna, doodling pictures and playing hangman with John Lynch, blueprinting my hypothetical relationship with a barista at Espresso Royale, and eating an inappropriate amount of Noodles & Co. garbage ... every single night. Last, thank you to my absolute favorites, who have resentfully taken me in like a ""stray cat"" for some of the best nights of #filmsquad karaoke and King's Cup that I will probably ever have: Lil Shay, Aditi, Sean, Matt, Tao, Natalie, Karen, Jamie, Karsten, Nick, Noah, Mayank, and Conrad. I'll cheers to that.
2012 Managing Photo Editor
I’m “Kirk” here.
I’m Erin everywhere else.
Maybe it’s the result of spending too much time in this building, but I usually respond quicker to the first rather than the second.
This is the place where I grew up over the last 4 years. The Daily is where I learned to toss aside my OCD to put off writing that paper in order to edit one more photo or, if we’re going to be honest, to hang out in the newsroom just a little bit longer. This is the place where I learned to assert myself, to shoot first and ask for permission later. But more importantly, this is the place where I learned the importance of selflessness and humility, that the final product is greater than its parts.
What I love about photojournalism is that I get to document my perspective of history unfolding in front of me, and working for The Daily has allowed me to explore campus in ways I never thought possible. Thanks to this “job,” I’ve been given the death glare from one of President Obama’s secret service agents to stop climbing chairs which resulted in me falling on Senator Levin — Sorry about that, sir, I really needed to get that photo — I had the best seat in the Big House, and I learned the true meaning of courage from Wolverine and quadriplegic Drew Clayborn.
To Photo Staff: Remember, as James Estrin once said, "One of the best things about being a newspaper photographer is that sooner or later you get to see most everything life has to offer." Never forget that. We have a pretty cool job.
To Mom, Dad, Joe, Dan, and Kerri: Thanks for being my biggest supporters, listening to me vent about the sleepless nights, looking for me on TV (and then texting me each time you saw me), and for looking at my photos (and sometimes reading the articles that accompanied them.)
This has been my defining college experience and I can’t imagine my college career without it. Thank you for giving me some of my best friends who are also my greatest inspirations. Thank you for giving this naturally curious girl an excuse to be legally nosy. Thank you for teaching me that every person has at least one story worth telling. Thank you, Michigan Daily, for helping me realize that I want to dedicate my life to storytelling.
This place and the people who work here have taught me what it means to be a journalist. I’m going to try and do this for the rest of my life, but I don’t think it will ever be quite like this again, and that’s what makes it so hard to say goodbye. I only hope that I can find another job that gives me a fraction of the pride, camaraderie, and joy that The Daily has.
Editorial Page Editor
"My career options when I came to the University: Transfer to an Ann Arbor-based Jimmy Johns, or write a column for The Michigan Daily.
I chose the Daily, hoping that in college, I wouldn’t be known as the girl who always smells like mayonnaise.
I suppose I’m not surprised I spent my entire college career in a building with 420 in the address. But I never expected it’d be the place where I’d go from a wandering, aimless pimple to a pimple with purpose.
To everyone who waited for me as I missed deadlines: Thank you. And to those who received an enraged, gif-less e-mail from me when they missed deadlines: Double thank you. As I prepare myself for years of unemployment, I leave the Daily indebted to your patience, curiosity and willingness to never take a Rick Fitzgerald answer as the final word.
I could’ve been a junior manager at Jimmy John’s. Instead, I got paid way less to work with the best people I know. And you know what? They didn’t even seem to care that I still smell like mayo.
I came to my first Edit board meeting because I was getting sick of not talking about politics with anyone who cared. Four years and many viewpoints, leftsides, and columns later, I still find myself humbled by the fact that I write for The Daily. The writers here are some of the best in student journalism and the legacy that our publication’s name has is respected throughout the country. Writing for the Daily has been an absolute honor over the past four years. I can’t thank the people who gave me this opportunity enough. To Andrew, Ashley, Adrienne, and Melanie: you guys have helped me become the writer that I am today and without your friendship, the Daily would have been a lot less memorable.
I have no doubt that the Daily will continue to be the incredible publication that it is for many more years to come.
Senior Copy Editor
The first time I walked into the Daily was first semester of my freshman year. I was nervous, and my hands were shaking, and everyone intimidated me for no reason other than the fact that they were on staff. I immediately left after the mass meeting without speaking to anyone.
The second time I went to the Daily it was the fall of sophomore year, and I was adamant on applying to copy. The copy chief was intimidating as hell, but I still went through the whole process: the mass meeting, the shadowing, and I eventually took the copy test, hoping to get on staff. I didn’t.
Then came round three. Winter semester of sophomore year I tried to get on staff for a third time. Thankfully, I was finally hired. Third time’s a charm, right?
The Daily sucked me in and changed my perspectives on nearly everything and helped me learn things about myself that I never thought were true. I cherished every minute I was in that newsroom. I stayed late when I didn’t have to; I picked up shifts; I did anything I could to spend time with the people who made me happy at the place that helped me find my love of the written word. There are a lot of things I will miss. But some of the best moments of my college years happened in that newsroom and with the people on staff.
I want to thank Matt, who probably doesn’t know it, but through his endless talk about how great his Daily adventures were, he convinced me to reapply that final time.
And of course, you copybots. You’re all wonderful. I love you all, and wish you luck with everything that you do.
Managing Photo Editor
I have loved this organization just about as much as I have hated it. For those of you reading this, know that I mean no offense. I think that it’s kind of what you sign up for when you dedicate as much time and energy to one thing for as long as I have to the Daily. You witness yourself and peers simultaneously exhibit their best and worst sides within the same week. With this come a couple of nights when you (falsely) threaten to quit, a photo closet that serves as a sanctuary for tears or yelling profanity (whichever you prefer); but most importantly, a bond that comes from spending so many hours in a place where your coworkers inevitably become your best friends.
I almost didn’t make it to Michigan, and looking back I realize that I almost didn’t make it through. I have my friends and roommates to thank for this, but most importantly I have 420 Maynard. I engaged with people who inspired me to write about my experience after my first two years here, who humbled me, and led me to truly believe in myself as a leader. Who not only made me feel accepted at this university, but also instilled the belief that I deserve to be here. It is with a heavy heart but an abundance of hope that I wish next year’s editors the best.
On the last night of Summer Daily I had a conversation over a cigarette with a fellow managing editor. We had done our jobs, but beyond that we got to know each other as people, understand each other’s experiences, and learn what it means to be committed to the paper as a whole. This is one of the most important things I have ever learned, and it has contributed to my understanding of what a successful section is within the larger context of the Daily.
Never forget that outside of your section you are a part of something bigger than yourself. It is not one section, editor, designer, writer, or photographer that makes a great paper; if you’re new at the Daily and have that mentality, you’re doing a disservice to yourself. Realize at the end of the day it is the collaborative efforts of every individual that make this institution great. Savor this opportunity to listen and learn, because this historic building has held more talent than you can possibly imagine.
I would like to thank the Summer Daily for changing my perceptions of the Daily and opening my eyes to appreciating how my individual identity fit within our collective. Thanks for ridiculous amounts of mischief (sorry Jake) and for the best summer of my college career. And thanks for the blanket fort. Always the blanket fort.
I would also like to thank Adam. Your patience and calm was a godsend this year. I am amazed at what we have accomplished and how we inspired our staff. Thank you for being funny when you try, and hilarious when you don’t.
I would like to thank Erin and Todd. I can finally, tiredly, and happily say we made it. My experience at the Daily is completely intertwined with your friendships. I would not be the person I am today without you.
Finally, to PhotoStaff, thank you for tolerating my long and anecdotal emails littered with colors, various fonts sizes, and attempts at humor. I will continue to be inspired by each and every one of you and look forward to watching you grow as individuals and photographers. Hopefully you have learned as much from me as I have from you.
Be humble, be curious, and be inspired.
All my love,
I have so much to say in this that I don’t know where to begin.
It’s true what they say: that you don’t fully understand the value of something until it’s gone. After two years of countless hours at the Daily as first an assistant opinion page editor and then a senior editor, I thought I needed a break. The late nights, deadlines, and sheer amount of time had started to get to me. So I finished up my term and bowed out after the first semester of my junior year.
And in this past year, I’ve realized how much I miss it. All of it. Laying out the page in InDesign every night, struggling to come up with titles and pull quotes, carefully proofing the page looking for Oxford commas and contractions, listening to people passionately voice their positions during editorial board. I can’t possibly sum up all I have to say about how big of a role the Daily has played in my college experience.
So instead, I just want to say thank you.
Thank you for the endless memories — elections, endorsement interviews, Sava’s sweet potato fries for dinner almost everyday. Thank you to my editors for their patience, their guidance, and for always knowing how to refine and polish my writing. Thank you to everyone who has ever read or reached out to me about my articles — your feedback has helped me grow and been something I’ve looked forward to regularly.
And lastly, thank you so much to the Daily, for making me into a writer. I’ll always be grateful for all the opportunities, friendships and exposure this place has given me.
Senior Photo Editor
Some people tell me that I used to live a double life. I would go to a mixer and go through the motions and dance with girls and drink Crystal Palace and Rocky Mountain Mist and pretend it was okay. But then I would come into the Daily, and it really was. Nobody questioned me when I walked into the newsroom. Nobody said a word. I was just Todd. I know that when I came out, everybody just shrugged. We’re all a little weird here. We all dance like nobody’s watching. I was just in the mood to talk about it; it just took me a little while to figure it out. Maybe it was the fact that I always breathed a little easier when I sat at my desk editing photos. Maybe it was because I was never wearing my mask when I came to work. Maybe I’ll never know the answer, and that’s okay. I know that without this place and these people, my life would be far less fulfilled and my days far less happy. I guess I’ve never acknowledged that until now.
Some part of me wants to sit here and pretend I’m not writing a senior goodbye. Some part of me wants to pretend it’s freshman year again and I’m a timid freshman sitting in the back of the conference room listening to Jake Smilovitz talk about this place and pretending I had any idea how important it would become to me. I couldn’t tell you how many nights I’ve spent in this newsroom, because I really can’t remember. I couldn’t tell you how many pictures I’ve taken here, because it really doesn’t matter. What matters is that I did it. What matters is that I’ve spent my college career doing something that means something to me. What matters is the first time I shadowed Marissa and we followed Laura Blake Jones around while she handed out candy and condoms for Halloween. What matters is the first time I stepped onto the field of the Big House and it rained so hard that I slipped and fell and thought I had broken all of the camera equipment. What matters is when I sat on the floor of Cowboys Stadium and captured the moment Trey Burke hit the unfathomable shot that sent them to the Elite Eight. What matters is the night I wiped confetti from my lens as President Obama took the stage on Election Night. What matters is that it happened at all.
To Kirk, Terra, Adam, and Kristen -- thank you for keeping me sane and for putting up with me for the last four years. I can confidently say that I wouldn't have made it this far without you. Thank you for helping me believe in myself and the work we do here. Terra and Kirk, we started together, and it seems fitting that we end together. To Adam, I'm so glad you joined us sophomore year. I still remember the day I met you and we bonded over friendship bracelets. To Kristen, you know. God, do you know. We crushed it.
So here's to 420 Maynard, my home away from home, my refuge, and the place where I learned to be myself. Thank you.
Deputy Magazine Editor
To say I’ve always wanted to walk into 420 Maynard would be a lie. There have been times that I’ve dreaded it, been too embarrassed to pull open that unwieldy backdoor and walk up the flight of stairs to the room where you face the music whether you want to or not. Then there was a time I walked out of 420 Maynard and never thought I’d go back again. I wavered for days. Working at the Daily is not easy by any stretch of the imagination. It is sacrifice through and through. But. Obviously I did go back. I think that’s where the exquisite power of the place lies. The Daily becomes a part of life, and not just in an “always looking for stories” sort of way, but in a way that we — everyone who wrote one of these and all the others in the newsroom who will eventually follow suit — we all become a family. The Daily becomes a part of life, because it is your life — it’s my life. The first people I’ve told good news to, work in that newsroom, the people I’m rooting for in every walk of life, work in that newsroom. They are my favorites, my inspiration, and the reason I walked back into the Daily, asking for forgiveness. I’ll never leave it again, in a completely metaphorical sense.
Unlike most of the people in this room, when I leave it for the last time, I’m leaving journalism for what I expect will be the last time. Or at least for quite a while. I joined the Daily because after writing for the newspaper in high school, I felt like some part was missing my freshman year. A self-proclaimed science nerd, I swore I couldn’t want to write again, but I did. The void was filled with the Daily — with the fast pace of breaking news, and the chance to tell a story no one has heard. It’s hard to let this part go. I will miss it.
Thank you mom and dad for reading my stories and supporting every choice I’ve made.
Thank you Mr. George for teaching me how to write and about how incredible this newspaper stuff really is.
Working at the Daily, for a paper that has such a tradition is intimidating. And the pressure is on. It’s a Stand and Deliver moment every day. But with raising those expectations, comes a terrific raising of my own expectations for myself in every facet of life. And perhaps that’s the best gift the Daily has given me. To expect that with enough passion for something, everyone can achieve greatness. Thank you to The Michigan Daily for being exactly what it is.
I moved in to 420 Maynard for the better part of 2012. I brought the essentials — a coffee pot, a warm blanket and a two-pound carton of Pepperidge Farm goldfish. I spent my nights poring over stories and polishing off the amazing work of my fellow Daily staffers. I saw the Copy Section transform from a five-person operation to a staff of 30 strong and I fought hard for our voting spot on Management Desk.
But when I moved out a year later, I left with so much more than those essentials. I left with amazing late night study habits, with a love/hate relationship with the Oxford comma, with friendships unlike any others and with a pride for an institution I’ve never felt before.
For as much as I gave over these four years, it always, somehow, had more to give. And that’s the true power of The Michigan Daily. This place, these people, showed me more about myself and what I want my future to become than anything else, and for that, and a million other inexplicable reasons, I am thankful.
Editorial Page Editor
This goodbye has been incredibly hard to write because there's really never a good time to sob for a few hours. But, since the entire newsroom has now heard my "cry voice," I think I'm safe.
Looking back at my experiences at Daily, many of them were my most challenging moments of college. I dealt with problems that I probably wasn't equipped to handle, but they made me smarter, more empathetic, and much more aware. I'm forever grateful for them.
I've had the pleasure of working with people much smarter than me for three years. I don't know if I'll ever be surrounded with more passionate people working towards a common goal again.
To Sarah: I miss the days of us cowering in the back of the editorial board room, debating whether we should say something or not. Nothing made me happier than us struggling with InDesign at 1 a.m. on a summer night. I love you.
To Andrew: Thank you for putting up with my freakouts, crying, and general craziness for so long. You're someone I always turned to for advice. I feel so lucky that I was able to work with "The Most Handsome Guy at The Daily" and also the most caring.
To Melanie: It's hard for me to imagine the Daily — or college, for that matter — without you. I love that we were able to run an entire section together while simultaneously sipping wine in a corner.
To Dan and Megan: You're both intelligent and especially kind people. You may think you hate your life when you have two exams the next day and editboard won't end. But you'll miss these moments in a year, I promise.
Senior Sports Editor
Sophomore year, I started jotting down notes in a Word file for this farewell. I’d update it whenever I was struck with a rush of emotion/nostalgia/passion for this place because I love this place. And I love what this place represents: college kids piecing together a bona fide newspaper every night while balancing a course load and everything else that early-20s life brings.
Ultimately, I didn’t use most of the stuff because I tried to keep this under 500 words. Still, a worthwhile exercise.
I couldn’t imagine a cooler college experience than the one I got with the Daily.
I look forward to telling my kids in 30 years about the time I drove to Northwestern and back to cover a basketball game the night before I had two exams. And about cranking out double-digit-hour drives to Virginia and Duke and making the trip back through the night to make class the next morning.
About when the athletic department got mad at me and about the nights we’d play chair monkey.
As Roger Ebert put it in writing his farewell column for the Illinois student newspaper in 1964: “I think most of us spend our time working on the newspaper because we consider it to be one of the few outlets on campus for real, meaningful activity. Many of the other undergraduate activities have the quality of crayon-and-construction-paper games compared to The Daily Illini.”
In a year or two or ten, I may forget the final score of most of the games I’ve covered, the names of the players or the headlines that ran. But I’ll never forget the wheel route I ran in the newsroom, coming down with Nez’s pass, only to land and smash the stained-glass window that sits in front the newsroom. Or the parody Twitter account we made for the lady that emailed out Ann Arbor traffic updates. And I won’t forget about kind Carol, the gracious woman from Fleet Services, for sending us off safely on road trips in a fuel-efficient Ford Fusion. I won’t forget QBing against State News for three years. What do we say, make it ten straight next year?
And I won’t forget the drives with Wass — talking about religion, Kanye West and brand-name sweatpants — and all my other beat mates. Thanks for putting up with all the show tunes, Sufjan Stevens songs and pit stops to pick up sunflower seeds.
Thanks to Tim for setting the standard and caring about the section long after you were gone. And Spar for not firing me when I suggested we write more features during our meeting in my first month. And Nez for being a freaking warrior and grinding out three semesters as sports editor. To Zach, Everett, Slov, Wass and Vuk for being the most badass class to stroll through Daily Sports. We kept raising the bar for each other and did it all the right way.
Managing News Editor
For me, the Daily is all about people. So rather than writing a mushy-gushy love letter to this stupid place, I want to leave some lasting thoughts with those who come after me and take this time to thank just a few of the people who have inspired me as a Daily staff member and a journalist-at-large.
For the many Daily editors and reporters to come: Don’t let anyone ever tell you that what you’re doing is insignificant. Regardless of whether you’re working on a striking exposé or a seemingly dull cover of a meeting, be excited about your work, or don’t do it at all. Too often, editors — including myself — underestimate stories, quelling what we think is a reporters’ baseless enthusiasm when we really should be embracing it. So, editors, you should treat your reporters as you would’ve wanted to be treated when you were in their shoes.
The same goes for the countless arguments and debates you’ll have at the Daily. Don’t underestimate their value. Some think that it’s not worth arguing over headlines, story details and policy at a student paper that no one’s reading. Regardless of whether you believe these decisions matter, these conversations are important. Take them seriously and take note of your peer’s opinions and the compromises you’re able to reach. Through these often-heated exchanges, the Daily has taught me to love and respect my peers and take my work seriously. I can’t tell you how many times an angry squabble — or even a reprimand from a colleague or source — has turned up as an exceptional piece of advice later down the road.
And a last tip: Screw your schoolwork. Don’t ever turn down a great opportunity at the Daily because you have a paper or an exam. You’ll sleep eventually. It’s things like my trip to the Iowa Caucus with Rayza and Andrew that I will never forget. It taught me how to write a story from scratch and it showed me the true Midwest.
And if you’re still worried about your schoolwork, don’t fret. It’s possible to do well in school here and spend all of your time at the Daily. I did it.
There’s a lot of people to which I owe the amazing experiences I’ve had in my four years here, so I’ll mention just a few.
Thanks to Ms. Nadler, Mrs. McQuillan and the many other teachers who’ve taught me how to write.
Thank you Bethany and Yossi, for teaching me the fundamentals of journalism, and for dealing with my sometimes-annoying excitement for the paper. Thanks for keeping me grounded.
Thank you to my senior news editors, Peter, Taylor, Alicia, K.C. and Katie, for the impenetrable dedication you’ve shown towards the news section. You’re the kind of employees a boss could only wish for. I know you’ll all have much success as you progress in life.
Thank you to Andrew and Matt. Never in a million years did I see myself building such close bonds with you guys, yet now I can’t imagine my last year at the Daily without you both. Thank you for trusting me and being my friends.
Thank you Diane Brown, for allowing me to build the first solid professional relationship of my journalism career. Thank you for fueling my guilty and sometimes unnecessary pleasure of chasing University cops around, and thank you for allowing me to call you at undesirable hours to make that possible. It’s hard to reflect on my time as a student here without thinking of you, which is both a wonderful and peculiar concept.
Thank you Jason, for letting me feel like I’ve had my own car when it was really yours as well. You have consistently adjusted your life and made sacrifices so that I could mess around at the Daily.
And lastly, thank you mom and dad, for not totally freaking out when I told you I wanted to be a journalist. Thanks for supporting me despite concerns that my GPA would suffer and embracing my love for newsprint. If you’re at all scared about my future, take solace in the fact that there’s nothing that makes me happier in life than reporting the news.
To all of the seniors that will leave the Daily today, know that the lessons we’ve learned while working here and the experiences we’ve had will stay with us for the rest of our lives. So, in the insightful words of Dr. Seuss, “Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.”
Online Arts Editor
The Daily has given me so much in the last two years — durable friendships, the chance to follow a passion and how to write without using the oxford comma. But most importantly, it has equipped me to really identify with Ciara's 'Deuces' as I bid adieu: "Thought that it was perfect, hope that it was worth it / But I'll be okay, no more stress, no more pain / I'll be straight, I'm chucking up them deuces." Thank you, Daily, if for nothing else than that.
Senior Arts Editor
I always sort of envisioned my last night at the Daily being kind of anti-climactic. Like I’d simply finish proofing, hug everyone goodbye and be like “alright, now I get to use the oxford comma whenever I want.”
And then, last night, I had a dream about walking in to the Daily for my last Arts meeting.
There was a carnival. Like, everyone was dancing and there were fireworks, and when I was finally done editing all the two articles someone brought in, I realized that that was it. There was a carnival, but I wasn’t going to stay.
To a dream reader, this reverie would be a gold mine. A 21-year old, leaving a place she’s been working at for the last three years, envisions a carnival on the day of her departure. That is some classic conflicting emotion.
So, that’s how I feel: I feel glad to have been a part of this crazy ride during my time at the Univeristy. I met people that I won’t be able to forget, read stories that have impacted me in ways I never knew college-level writing could and have come to realize that not everything I write should go in print.
And, of course, I’m also sad. How could I not miss 420 Maynard, with its stupid air conditioning system that is always too cold, and its pop machine that gives me diet coke for $.50. What’s the point of anything else.
I’ll miss the people, the good times, the terrible times, the “oh it’s 6 p.m. and I overslept” times.
But now I get to make friends with the wide world of oxford-comma users, and that feels like a pretty great send-off.
I’ve taken a not insignificant amount of flack from colleagues for my performance at one of the Daily’s mass meetings at the beginning of this semester, my last at 420 Maynard.
Depending on who’s telling the story, I may have gotten choked up telling these freshmen, several of whom I likely scared off, how this place will suck you in, define your college career, give you a family at this massive school.
I’m choked up now, too.
I’ve never known a Michigan without the Daily, nor do I want to. I ambled into a story meeting during Labor Day weekend 2010, before I had even attended a class here (The first time, but by no means the last time, I would put the Daily before my academics).
It’s impossible for me to separate the Daily from the rest of my college experience — the two are forever intertwined. The most sacred memories I’ll take from this place aren’t getting hammered on Football Saturdays with friends, and the place I grew the most in Ann Arbor wasn’t the classroom — it was at the Daily.
The memories I’ll cherish forever are meals like the one I had with the football beat in Iowa City this fall. We stacked our cell phones in the middle of the table, nobody daring to reach for theirs lest they be stuck with the bill. The conversation was memorable, the company couldn’t be beat and the laughs (mostly at my beverage choice’s expense — Iowa City is world-renowned for its Pinot Grigio, thank you very much) meant more with that group. I hoped it would never end.
And though there were times I inexplicably felt my time at the Daily never would end — that we’d all just somehow keep returning each night, putting out a product to be proud of and staying friends forever — I know it’s time to let the next generation kindle the flame we’ve worked so hard to keep burning.
I’m up against deadline wrapping up this goodbye. I guess I hoped that if I never wrote it, I wouldn’t have to leave. But before I finish, there are some long-overdue thank yous to give out.
To Andrew, who led us admirably through another year of editorial freedom: There’s nobody else I would’ve wanted to do this job under. It’s been an absolute pleasure.
To Flame, who no matter where I go will always stand out as one of the hardest-working reporters I know: I’ve learned so much from you. I only wish we had become friends sooner.
To the hockey-beat-turned-football-beat: I’m very happy we got this second chance to work together. Thanks for pushing me and for always keeping the driver’s seat open for me. You’ve all made me a better writer. Liz, who knew a random trip to Ben & Jerry’s on Free Cone Day during freshman year would turn into such a rewarding friendship? Our Wednesday trips to Ashley’s will always hold a special place in my heart.
To my parents, the recipients of so many late-night-turned-into-early-morning texts as my car finally pulled back into Ann Arbor from places like Sault Ste. Marie, Mich. or East Hartford, Conn., letting them know I’m safe: Your unconditional love and support mean the world to me.
To Red Berenson, the most venerable coach I will ever cover: The lessons you taught about hockey and life at our daily chats won’t soon be forgotten.
To Mac Bennett, Zach Hyman and Jon Falk: Thank you for letting me tell your stories. I hope I did them justice.
And, though this list is incomplete, thank you also to Nicole Auerbach, Tim Rohan, Stephen J. Nesbitt, Mark ‘Six-Star’ Burns, Michael Florek, Ben Estes, John Lowe, Mark Snyder and the Ontario Hockey League’s Kitchener Rangers.
When I first started working at the Daily, I didn’t talk to a lot of people because, I don’t know, they terrified me. I didn’t go to Daily parties either, which didn’t really help with the whole branching out process. I tried to go to a Daily party one time, but I ended up staying up all night in my room instead…working on a Daily article. The irony! I even tried to go to a Daily party a second time, and I made it to the front lawn of the house, only to find that the one person from the Daily who I felt comfortable enough texting had already left the party. So, I left without having even entered the house.
Today, I think I can say I’m a little more comfortable at the Daily. I got to be Music Editor the last two semesters, which was super fun because now it was MY turn to be a terrifying and intimidating upperclassman who scares new writers away from parties. (Not really.)
I feel like I can call the Daily a place of my own now, especially that little room in the back corner of the Daily office that always seems to have some sort of little surprise waiting for us every music meeting (never did find out what was up with those handcuffs).
Also, I know I have improved as a writer (when you practice something, you get better at it—whooaooaoa!). I’m not sure if music reviews are something I want to “go into,” but i can say without a doubt that I have become an immensely more confident writer thanks to the Daily. Also, I’ve had a blast sharing my feminist fury with the masses through my column. The Daily is a WONDERFUL platform to get my voice heard by a fairly wide range of people, and that’s something I definitely want to do, like, forever. LISTEN TO ME, DAMN IT!
Anyway, the Daily really has been a pivotal part of my college experience, and has really helped me figure out who I am as a writer, a colleague, and a friend.
And I’ve since gone to a Daily party. They’re fun.
TV/New Media Editor
The first time I walked into The Daily newsroom, something seemed to just fall into place. The open environment spoke volumes to me, highlighting the fundamental differences between a journalism and finance-oriented work environment. And you might also say that the people here are my kind of weird.
A little over a year later, my career pa
ths has drastically changed for the better, and I’m still kicking myself for not joining the Daily earlier. But I think that’s what makes the Daily so special; it truly sucks you in. A few weeks in as a blog writer, I was interviewing for a beat editor position. I had no idea what to expect, and my first interview was (understandably) terrible. Thankfully, my Managing Arts Editor, Kayla, encouraged me to apply for another beat, and it turned out to be a far better fit. Before I knew it, I was at the Daily a couple of nights a week, and I’ve never looked back. And that’s the thing about the Daily, it gives writers a much-needed kick, pressuring people to push their ideas from mind to paper. What more could you ask for?
Managing Editor Arts
“How many Daily editors does it take to screw in a lightbulb?” my aunt asked me a few weeks after I became a Senior Arts Editor my sophomore year. It’s an old joke they used to tell when she worked in the then-computerless newsroom over 20 years ago.
“How many?” I asked.
“Three. One to actually do it and two to talk about how great the old lightbulb was.”
It’s true; we’re a bunch of nostalgic nerds who love tradition and the sounds of our own voices perhaps a little too much. Which is why I’ll try to keep this short — a nearly impossible task for me, as any every editor I’ve ever had will tell you.
Thank you to Kavi for inspiring me to apply for the TV columnist position; to Proma and Radhika for loving television as much as I do; to Jo for Nug time; to Elliot for being the Jerry Gergich of Arts; to Melanie for being the irreplaceable better half of the best co-byline I’ve even been a part of; to Anna and Kelly for Girls’ Night; to Leah for allowing me to exceed word limits far too often; to Akshay for late-night Facebook chats about “Orange is the New Black”; to Andrew for being an indelible part of my life; to the word “indelible” for making a million appearances in my articles; to “Cougar Town” for Penny Can; to the Dixie Chicks and Ciara and Kanye and Sinead O’connor for scoring many a production night.
Thank you to Daily Arts for providing a space where I can write over a thousand words about Claire Danes and make way too many pop culture references. Thank you to the Daily for teaching me more than any class ever has.
If not by my passion for collaboration or personal war against passive voice, I hope my legacy as Managing Arts Editor is defined by the style I created for Jennifer Lawrence’s nickname (it’s J-
Law, and the Arts desk had one of its many annoying but passionate debates over that hyphen).
As Jenna Maroney said in her final appearance on “30 Rock”: See you later, suckas!
Paige Van Kampen
I wish I had a good story about why or how I started working at The Daily, but I don't. I was destined to be a copybot and that's exactly what I applied for. Instead of thank-yous, I think I will start with my apologies. Jo Adams, I'm sorry for a loving hugs when they make you painfully uncomfortable, I'm sorry for not liking Justin Bieber and I'm sorry for saying that I like Qdoba more than Chipotle. I'm NOT sorry for liking 157 Lana Del Rey photos every day on Instagram or making oatmeal in the newsroom microwave every week in my literature-themed coffee mug. To Tom and and Jo, we've had a great year together and I'm very glad for our 3,000 message Facebook chat during the elections and the birth of the sloppy copy cat, Oxford. To Miriam and Jennie, thanks for the contagious and dangerous addiction to The Mindy Project. To Kelly, you're the only one I would have been able to attempt to chase down Hoodie Allen after his concert (or even see Hoodie in concert to begin with...). Meaghan, I will forever you think of you when I eat Thai curry soup. To the rest of the copy desk, I love you all and please don't ever let The Game cease to exist. xx PVK
Senior Sports Editor
One day last March, Red Berenson entered the room at Yost where we always do our after-practice interviews. Before he sat down in his favorite chair, he turned and commented on the fact that I always smiled whenever he came into the room.
I responded that I was happy to be there. He nodded in approval.
To be fair, anyone who’s fortunate enough to talk to Red about hockey and life every afternoon for two seasons would smile too. But it wasn’t just that — everything I’ve done on this Daily journey has made me happy, from my first women’s track interview as a freshman to the day I finally made it up to the press box in the Big House.
None of this ever felt like work. That I got “paid“ to do this is still mind-boggling. There was never a time when I didn’t think, “I’m so lucky to be here right now.”
Lucky that road trips mean coming home with weird stories that still make me laugh. Lucky to know the simple joy of a sweaty game of chair monkey. Lucky to be 4-0 against State News (though that’s nothing to do with luck — they’re just really bad at football).
I truly love this job. Even on days when it’s overwhelming and frustrating, it’s not — nothing I’ve done has ever filled me with such pride. I’m in awe every day of the immense talent I’m surrounded by, that I get to call these inspiring and hardworking individuals who will go on to do fantastic things not just colleagues, but some of my best friends who mean so much to me.
Football beat 13 a.k.a hockey beat 11-12, you made this fall so incredibly memorable. After all our roadtrips together over the years, I still don’t like country music, but I have to say, Old Alabama will always have a special place in my heart thanks to you guys.
Slovin, three years on the same beat, we’ve seen and done it all together and there’s no one else I would rather have shared it with than you — FTB always. Zach and Everett, you never settle for mediocrity and always pushed me to get better in every way. Since day one it was a dream of mine to cover football, so thanks for the opportunity.
To the editors that came before me, Nicole, Chantel, Tim, Nick, Flo and Nez, you were more of an inspiration than you’ll ever know and I still look up to each of you. Neal, I shadowed my first event with you, so thanks for the first impression that made me want to stick around. Wass thanks for always being down for a game of chair monkey and for all the bruises that followed suit. My friends, sorry for not being around much, but you’re the greatest for understanding. And above all, love to my family for the never-ending support through all the peaks and valleys.
I never would’ve figured myself for a sportswriter. I could never thank 420 Maynard enough for the opportunity to become one — and for the smiles along the way.
Senior Sports Editor
I’m the most nostalgic person I know, making this the most difficult story to write. But here I am, with one semester left, and it’s a miracle I even wrote my first story.
If I knew the investment it would take to get here, I never would’ve emailed then-Managing Sports Editor Ryan Kartje, but I was naïve, and lucky, because I think Kartje responded to only one email each week, and that week, it was mine.
My first conversation before my first Sunday meeting was with a big, tall bearded man that I thought was a senior. He was off putting enough that I contemplated leaving before the meeting started. A month or so later, I learned that Everett Cook was a freshman. Not long after, he became a friend.
In a foreshadow of everything I’d do in college, I procrastinated getting in touch with the SID for my first story, and when I called what I thought was her cell phone a half-hour before the tennis match was to start, I discovered the number was for an office that had closed thirty minutes earlier. I had too much pride to come into the Daily and tell them that I couldn’t write my first story, so I decided in some Lorch Hall crevice that my Daily Sports career had ended before it really began. With no story to write, I met some friends at No Thai who I’d turned down an hour earlier, and miraculously, recognized Mark Burns, who happened to have the SID’s cell, sitting at a table. The rest, like each of the stories I’ve written since, is history.
So The Michigan Daily, you’ve sent me off to Maui and San Juan. To Dallas and a Final Four. To New York, Philadelphia and nearly every Big Ten campus. To do a job — the best one I’ll ever have. And I’ve returned the favor with what? A few shattered windows and a broken light fixture in your building?
But more than any road trip or interview or opportunity to cover a big game, it was the people inside your building, 420 Maynard, especially at the first two desks on the right. More than anyone, it was upperclassmen, destined to move on to bigger and better things, but who never ignored the little guy who was just beginning. It came in the form of a drive home, a Frosty from the Union that I didn’t ask for, or that extra minute you took to make my story — and really, me as a person — into something better than I ever could’ve asked for.
The hardest part about coming back this year was that there weren’t anymore older people to look up to. So to the freshmen, sophomores and even juniors, if I have been to you even half of what Burns, Kartje, Joe, Nicole, Tim, Spar, Chantel, Flo, Nez, Ben and Luke were to me, you’re headed in the right direction.
I’ve shared four years of road trips with Neal, chair monkey games with Liz, a press box with Helfand, a bed with Everett and a house with Slov — the latter three of whom will one day be famous writers. So thank you, Daily, for allowing me to write in your paper about my biggest passions, for giving me the means to have nights I’ll never forget and most importantly, for introducing me to people that I will always love.
The Original UPF
Senior News Editor
My high school was K-12 and private; I came to the school freshman year and was considered “new.” While I eventually found my place during those four years, when I graduated a group of students was given a special symbol next to their name marking them as “lifers,” meaning they had attended the school since kindergarten. Thirteen years seems like an adequate amount of time at an institution to earn the title of lifer, but what I’ve realized in my four years at The Michigan Daily is that being a lifer isn’t dependent on the number of years you spend at a place but rather on how much of yourself you put into it. Team 124: We’re all Daily lifers. We’ve spent countless days and nights in the Stanford Lipsey Student Publications building, but more importantly all of us put our hearts and souls into this institution. While we’re leaving the Daily now, it will never truly leave us. Whether we like it or not the Michigan Daily is a part of us, and will be for life.
Editor in Chief
A common critique of the Daily holds that we “take ourselves too seriously.” While I understand the sentiment, four broken windows and hundreds of mistakes later, I certainly don't feel too serious.
However, the amount I have grown and learned at 420 Maynard are unquantifiable, and the relationships forged here through hard work and bad beer are some of the most important and best I’ve had.
Slovin: Thank you for being so sane and investing so, so much in the Daily — only you could handle hockey and then football while working full-time. Let's be real: We did pretty good. Flame: You are insane in the best way, never boring and unwaveringly dedicated. Thanks to my parents for supporting me through this misadventure. Thanks to Adrienne, Melanie and Kayla because friendship, and to Matilda for dragging me to 420 Maynard Street in the first place.
Peeta Shahin and Katieniss Everke, may the odds be ever in your favor.
A huge round of applause to Mary Sue Coleman for the night when I got a 12:30 a.m. press release clarifying that you were, in fact, not drunk while addressing the Big House.
To all 240ish people on the editorial staff: Thank you so much for putting up with me, working so damn hard and keeping this bizarre institution in business — it has meant more than I can say.
I really, really hope at some point in my life I again have to privilege of working with a group of people who care too much, have too much talent and take themselves and their work entirely too seriously.