Friday, December 11, 2015

I Did It

Four years ago, I received a letter in the mail back home in Chicago from Ohio University, saying that I was accepted into the university and into the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. Who knew that me making my decision to make the culture change from the metropolis of Chicago to the small town of Athens, Ohio would change my life for the better?

Today, I am an official graduate of Ohio University. I finished my degree in three and a half years and made lifetime friends while I was here. The memories I've made here are innumerable. From spending countless Friday nights in the newsroom for Gridiron to every roommate experience I've had, there is so much I've learned here.

The hours I've spent in the WOUB newsroom is immense. I've met my mentors, some of my best friends for life, and future journalists and teachers that are going to change the world for the better in that newsroom. Every show, every cast, every package, every live shot, every interview, and every game I've been a part of has shaped me in some way.

Now, I'm done with school and will enter the working world. I didn't expect my time here to end so quickly. I'm done with school. That's all I've known for 21 years. I'm going to be honest: I'm a bit scared to enter this new working world without having to worry about a 20 page paper to turn in for a political science course or a presentation for a Spanish class.

I'm not trying to sound cliche, but these were the best years of my life. I've had my trials and tribulations like everyone does, but I wouldn't change anything about my time here in Athens. Anytime I meet a freshman, I always say, "I'm so jealous." They have another four years in the best place in this country. It's become my home away from home. I never thought that I would love a small town as much as I love my big city.

I cannot thank my parents enough for letting me pursue my dream and my future. They gave me all the tools they could afford, supported me when others didn't, and took a huge financial risk on their daughter who wanted to get a journalism degree. That is something that I don't think I can ever fully repay. Even when I do eventually pay off these loans, I will still owe them my life for doing something like that for me.

Thanks so much Ohio University & WOUB for giving me the opportunities and
the work environment where I can grow as a journalist. Thank you to Jimmer, Seth, Baucco, and Lucas for being my mentors. Thank you Allison, Atish, Gabe, and Susan for being great co-workers in the newsroom as professional staff. Thank you to the sports department for becoming a part of my family and creating our own fraternity. I know all of you are going to be great successes one day, ranging from my fellow nine seniors all the way down to the freshmen. Thank you Carter for working with me through every issue and obstacle thrown our way this past semester. I couldn't have done anything without you. Thank you John & Jordan for being the best two friends I could have ever asked for.

Thank you to my roommates Katie, Tia, Madison, and Kristin for being able to deal with me for these past two years. Thank you to all my Fenwick girls (Tori, Izzy, Ashley, Claire, Speez, and Theresa) and the two fellow founders of the broadcast club (Jake & Will). Without you guys helping and pushing me throughout high school, I don't know where I would be now.

I still don't know where I will be next, and it's terrifying knowing that. I've been persistent, sent in bunches of job applications, created my resume, created demo reels and created my own website. Now, it's a waiting game to see what station will accept me to join their newsroom, just how four years ago I was waiting to see who would accept me to join their academic community.

All I can say now? I did it.