Madeline Hinkley/Daily.

Position(s): Fall 2020-Fall 2021 Managing Online Editor, Winter 2020 Data Project Manager

Section(s): Web

Semesters at The Daily: 7

I joined The Michigan Daily’s Web Team the first semester of my freshman year, and I can confidently say that it was the best decision I’ve made in college. While I was simply searching for a place to build my skills in technology, I found so, so much more here.

The Web Team has an ambitious mission to lead The Daily’s digital transformation, and I had the great fortune to see it start to happen. Our data team grew from a fledgling group of two to a data-graphics creating machine! The mobile app team has been working hard to build our next app. And of course, we launched a brand new website, designed by our amazing product design team, that helped win us our first Online Pacemaker Award. This is on top of our web development team’s numerous other sites and internal tools — all supported by the cloud (finally!). But the Web Team’s just getting started, and I know the team’s going to continue pushing the boundaries of technology in student journalism. I always say that if you can dream it, the Web Team can build it!

None of this would have been possible without the unmatched effort put in every day by my friends and team members.

First, to Naitian Zhou, my Co-Managing Online Editor: You are the smartest person I know — and I don’t say that lightly. You inspire me to take on new challenges and push myself to keep learning and keep getting better. Truly, the day I asked you if you wanted to join the Web Team changed the trajectory of this paper. Not only am I proud of what we were able to build and accomplish, but I’m also grateful to have your friendship.

To Simran Pujji, my first Co-Managing Online Editor: Thank you for always standing by my side and standing up for the Web Team. I’m so happy to have gotten to know you both inside and outside of The Daily, and look forward to seeing the great things you do!

To my Project Managers — Alex Cotignola, Jessica Chiu, Rimaz Khan and Simran Pujji: Thank you for bearing with Naitian and me through some crazy times. You have each been better PMs than we could have imagined, and your dedication has been the main driver of our growth. I look forward to taking a road trip and catching up with you all after graduation!

To Dora Guo and Eric Lau, our incoming Managing Online Editors: Naitian and I are incredibly excited to see you take these roles and make your mark on the Web Team and The Daily overall. Our best is still to come! Know that I am only a Slack message away, but also that after working closely with both of you, I know just how amazing, talented and capable you are. One tip to leave you with: Please make sure to take breaks and get your sleep — The Daily will still be here tomorrow!

To every other member of the Web Team I’ve had the honor of working with: Thank you. You are the future of this team, and I’m already jealous of everything you’ll be learning and creating in the next couple of years.

To The Big Three — Claire, Jack and Brittany: Thank you for striving to create a close relationship with the Web Team. This has definitely been a transformative year for The Daily, and it was made possible by your dedication and support. Your leadership is something I will always admire.

I’m incredibly grateful to have had the opportunity to witness the Web Team’s explosive growth over my time here and to have had the privilege to lead the Web Team for the past 1.5 years. This is not just a goodbye, but a thank you, because I know the memories of this place will never leave me, and I’ll be eagerly following The Daily’s future achievements. Thank you for everything!