Editor’s note: A 30 column is a chance for departing senior staffers to say farewell and reflect on their time spent in The Daily Texan’s basement office. The term comes from the old typesetting mark (–30–) to denote the end of a line.
The first time I saw my name on this newspaper as a staff member in January 2013, my measly 200-word track and field recap barely took up a corner of the sports page. But to me, it meant everything.
Before then, I only dreamt of what it would be like to call myself a reporter for The Daily Texan, the newspaper I had long heard of before arriving on campus. It was my first journalism goal since swearing to the profession in high school.
After not making the news staff that previous fall, I questioned if I could do it. Then a sports editor by the name of Christian Corona hired me and made me feel like I could. I didn’t really know what I was doing at first, but it just felt special to be there.
I experienced memories few college students have the privilege to. I witnessed significant UT sporting events up close and wrote stories on legends such as Jordan Spieth. I was able to enter into the lives of UT athletes and share their stories, while being able to blog about the World Cup and debate who would win the Heisman.
But the most special memory was being able to pick up the Texan on a weekday morning and know how hard 20-something-year-old students had worked to put it together the day before.
I didn’t get to hang out in the newsroom for various reasons as much as I wanted to over the years, but that made it all the more special when I was there.
The Texan, from the beginning, has been there for me. It was there to teach me how to be a valuable journalist. It was there waiting for me after breaks to pursue internships, and this semester, when I decided to switch from sports to news (I guess I was meant for it, after all), it was there to re-tune my skills as I enter the professional world.
To the great peers I’ve had at the Texan, as well as editors such as Christian, Chris Hummer and Stefan Scrafield, to whom I owe much to, and the fantastic news staff that took me in this semester, I have had a blast and learned so much. I have been able to work with people who will all go on to achieve great feats.
No matter what the industry holds for us, the Texan will always be special to me and everyone else fortunate enough to pass through its doors — where, for only one night, there is a reassurance that journalism is alive and well, and its future is safe.