Myler: Dear readers: If you don’t know me, too late — I’m leaving

Emily Myler

Editor’s Notes: Traditionally, graduating seniors working at The Collegian are given the chance to write a farewell note at the end of their tenure at CSU.

Dear readers of The Rocky Mountain Collegian

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The chances are high you have no idea who I am. Maybe you’re going back to check the masthead on page two for my name. Has it always been there? You’re not crazy, my name was only added in April because I came up with a kickass name for our April Fools edition: MLA Styler. 

But long before my name took its spot in the paper, I’ve been here in the newsroom working to make The Collegian not only error-free but ethical and aesthetic. This semester, I’ve taken on the responsibility of supporting Associated Press Style, Society of Professional Journalist’s Code of Ethics and our own standards of quality. If you’ve had a problem with any of our articles, it has also been with me. 

This kind of work is not pretty. My shift typically ran from 6 p.m. to midnight and when there were mistakes or problems, the responsibility has primarily fallen on me. I’ll be the first to admit that I haven’t been perfect, but I’m walking away an improved writer, editor and person because of the challenges I’ve faced. 

The belief in the importance of what we do here at The Collegian is what has kept me going week after week. I’m not a journalism major or interested in going into this field, but this work has reinforced for me just how vital media is to a functioning democratic society. 

This year has tested us more than we could have imagined. We receieved more hateful emails than I can count; we’ve been called everything from fake news to racist. These hit us even harder in light of the shooting at the Capital Gazette in June 2018. For the first time, I felt massive concern for my colleagues who want to have careers in this field. I wondered how many of them would be the victims of such violent hate against the news.

But, I also knew that none of these emails would stop the brave, dedicated students from publishing truth night after night. Even when we were instructed to leave the newsroom in groups for fear of retaliation for an article we published or when our newspapers were stolen after we worked on them until 1 a.m. 

I’ve learned a lot about journalism and journalists this semester. I’ve seen the kind of tenacity it takes to follow a story to the end, even when it is controversial or emotional. 

There’s nothing more important to us than making sure the community at CSU and in Fort Collins have access to the most up-to-date, accurate information on the topics that matter the most. I’m incredibly proud of how much we were able to do that this year. 

So now you know more about the person behind the page: what I do, what drives me and what weighs on my mind. But as much as this is an introduction, it is also a bittersweet farewell. I may not have reached stardom in my year here, but I’m still grateful for this opportunity to be your copy chief. 

Emily Myler was the copy chief of The Rocky Mountain Collegian. She can no longer be reached at emyler@collegian.com, but you may still reach out to her on Twitter @emilymyler2. 

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