This archived article was written by: Allie Mangum
The Eagle newspaper staff is a group like no other: outspoken demeanors that often slap you in the face, variance of opinions and tastes leave some gasping in frustration or awe, genius and talent turn on envy and diversity that somehow unites.
In the haven of our Eagle Office, discussions range from political viewpoints to those of less scholarly merit, i.e. sexual innuendo.
I have learned more from this staff than from all my other writing classes combined. I do not know if Susan Polster or Les Bowen would agree, because I ask more questions than any other staff member. At least it is not the same questions over and over though – OK, sometimes it is.
Lessons learned are not limited to computer programs, newspaper layout rules and Associated Press guidelines. While these are great tools I will take with me, I take, hold on to and strive to possess Les’ almost annoying brilliance in any subject matter, that I may have only taken a splinter of; Heather Myer’s straight-forward-tell-you-how-it-is attitude that I admire – and also may only want a splinter of; CJ Jelsma’s confident and unique style; Nick Critchlow’s boundless enthusiasm and Susan’s faith in my potential, her guidance and her ability to make me feel talented and important. And of course, I have learned to work under extremely stressful conditions without killing anybody.
While I will miss many things about this experience, there are some things I will not miss, such as the smell of pickled herring and 1 a.m. nights in the office laying out the paper for publication. So I might miss those late nights once in a while, because this is where I have come to know these people.
As a generally shy and reserved person, being assigned to lifestyles was intimidating. I am required to contact and interview complete strangers. What do I ask? How do I begin? These are questions I still struggle with, but I have discovered everyone is interesting and has a great story to share. I want to tell these stories and express their personalities, meeting their worth.
Students, find your own outlet, a way to escape, to express and experience – even endure – people and events that will forever remain etched in your mind. Make the most of what you are given. Put yourself out there to expand beyond who you are now.