I never thought I would be this sad about graduating. I never thought that I would be sad about leaving college because I know my experience wasn’t like most, being a commuter and all. I guess it’s not so much school I’ll miss. I do feel ready for the real world. But it’s the paper. It’s the people on this amazing team who I will miss the most.
I feel like I am just getting started, and in one week I can’t ever be in a Spartan meeting at 1 p.m. on a Wednesday ever again. I can never again come in on a Sunday morning and listen to classic rock with my friends as we eat donuts Dave or Adam brought, and design the paper. I can never complain to Bri about how stressed I am about editing, or how stories aren’t in on time again. I can never again sass Jordan about showing up late. Or whether a story would fit best in the news or sports section. Never again will I be able to cry in Dave’s office about how hard my life is and how completely stressed out I am, while he gives me advice and tells me how awesome I am over and over again even though he knows I don’t always believe it.
My proudest moments in college were with this paper. I started timid and shy, always letting my writing speak for me. No one even knew who I was until my junior year when I became editor next to the incredible Jadie Dow. I was never able to make it to the meetings. People only knew my name because of my bylines. I can’t imagine how some of the students of the paper felt when I was introduced. They were probably like, “who is this girl? She’s our new leader? I’ve never even seen her before.” Naturally, it took me awhile to get comfortable in a leadership position. Until this semester when Bri and I ran the show. I finally felt comfortable being in charge. And words can hardly express how freaking proud I am of every single reporter and photographer who worked for us this semester. We killed it. This is definitely not your ordinary club. That’s for sure.
Most importantly, I think, and what’s making me weep over my keyboard right now is the fact that the paper is what made Castleton feel like home to me. I didn’t live on campus. I didn’t party on the weekends or really have any friends here. A social life is hard to come by when you have 18 credits every semester and work two jobs.
This semester The Spartan became my family. I am proud to be myself in front of these people. I feel so grateful for every single one of them. Especially Dave. He’s always believed in me, even when I didn’t believe in myself. He let me write an article as a senior in high school. He helped me become editor when I’d never made it to a meeting. And even now when I tell him how terrified I am that I won’t find a job after graduating, he tells me how there’s no way I won’t, because I’m a star.
The Spartan has been the most accepting, non-judgmental, dedicated, mature group of people I’ve ever been a part of. And while I’m ready to walk out the doors of Leavenworth and leave CU behind, I don’t think I’ll ever be ready to say goodbye to The Spartan. It breaks my heart that I have to, even though I know I am leaving it in the hands of two extremely capable, strong female leaders who will continue to put out one of the best college newspapers in New England. Don’t forget me y’all. I’ll see you in NYC.