Courtesy of Sarah Szalai.

Position(s): 2021 Culture, Training and Inclusion Chair

Section(s): Culture, Training and Inclusion

Semesters at The Daily: 3

To The Michigan Daily, I love you. It’s hard to put into words. You went from a nebulous, virtual world that was a stranger, to a home full of ideas that propel the world to stop and think, with people with the deepest hearts and biggest minds. You are 131 years of passion and history, growth and evolution. You have seen the world change — pandemics, world wars, a few wins against Ohio State (!!!!) and everything in between. When I reflect on these things, I am honored to be a single note in the song you have played all these years. 

You have been a home to some of the people I now get to call close friends. To my Culture, Training, and Inclusion BESTIES, I am so so thankful for you all. Our Monday night meetings were a moment of joy and energy every week. Calling it a meeting doesn’t do it justice — future CTI chairs, y’all should come up with a name that better encapsulates what it was: a time for community, reflection and positivity. Each of you brought your whole selves, whom I love. You brought unique perspectives, amazing senses of humor and a zeal for life that is unmatched. I am forever grateful to have worked alongside you as we figured this inaugural year of CTI out by just taking one step after the other. You are truly the best. 

Alex. Alex Harring. Where do I begin. I feel like we were on the show Married at First Sight, TMD version — strangers turned work best friends. To think about where we started and what we created, it truly is something. We started with the two of us and a couple of ideas, and now we have 5 teams, a culture rooted in collaboration and community and a foundation that will last far beyond us. I am thankful that you’re the person that I got to figure all of this out with. You are so passionate, dedicated and quite literally the funniest person I know. I know I can always count on you to drop everything, put out whatever fire that was in front of us and of course, for the occasional or very frequent Skeeps push. You are one of the realest people I’ve ever met, Daily besties forever! 

Claire, Jack and Brittany, you three truly have led this organization through all of the struggles and landed far beyond where it started. You have been models of what it means to take care of yourself and the people around you, ask questions that catalyze change and support your managers to push the envelope. I have learned so much from you and have so enjoyed getting to know you as people and as co-workers. You have changed this organization and all of the people in it for the better. We have grown so much in the past year, and I am thankful to have gotten to do it with you three at the forefront.  

And to Andy and Ripley, our future CTI Chairs, I am so excited for you to take over CTI! You both are truly remarkable, and I am ecstatic for you to be in these positions. You will bring CTI to new heights and build relationships across The Daily in a way that is rooted in justice and equity.  You are change agents to this organization, and I cannot wait to see all you do. Each of you bring such energizing perspectives and have a passion for this work that will push boundaries and catalyze growth. I will miss you dearly, but I’m literally smiling so hard while writing this, you are amazing! CTI is in great hands.

Ironically, after all the time I dedicated to The Daily, this is my first piece of writing. So, to conclude my first ever actual piece for The Michigan Daily, all I can say is thank you. I love you all and this place forever and ever.