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The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

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Ye: Goodbye, Collegian, I’ve never been good at headlines

Samantha Ye

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

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I never expected to make it this far with The Collegian.

Before I joined my freshman year, I was thinking I would put in one year as a desk reporter and then advance to editor. After the end of my first year, I was super sure I was going to quit student media altogether. By the end of my second year, my brain was basically a deep-fried potato.

But here I am, a Collegian news reporter who has been on the desk for four years and has 234 stories under her metaphorical belt, her brain relatively un-potato-fied. I can’t say I’m not surprised, but I also can’t say I’m not proud of myself and grateful to everyone who helped me thrive in this role.

Despite all the late nights and nightmares about emails, the fact that I stayed in student media made my college experience all the richer.

The learning I’ve done in my undergraduate career is inextricable from my work at student media. Working as a journalist exposed me to worlds I never would have encountered if I hadn’t been tasked with covering them, from talking with Colorado State University professors about the quandaries faced by non-tenure track faculty to learning about the science of tomato taste.

And the more I learned, the more I cared.

I became attached to the City Council beat because at my first meeting, community members were advocating for establishing 24/7 homeless lockers outside the Fort Collins Mennonite Fellowship church. The council’s decision was postponed to a later meeting, which I also covered because I wanted to see this story through. I went to the next meeting and the one after that until I was a council reporter who spent every other Tuesday reading staff reports and writing up public comments, some nights up to midnight — all because I cared about that first story.

Each of my 234 bylines in The Collegian has such a distinct experience involved. Reporting showed me the expanse of the stories in this community, stories that live on far deeper than my writing can capture, but I have done my best to tell. How could I be anything but dedicated when the work itself is so meaningful?

To the CSU and Fort Collins community, your experiences deserve to be preserved and understood. I hope I served that role well in my time here, and, even more so, I’m looking forward to the future reporters of The Collegian continuing that work with passion.

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I know I haven’t won any award here, but I still feel like giving a thank you speech.

Thank you to all my editors through the years. It’s always been fun seeing my stories and reporting improve with your feedback. All of your understanding leadership kept me from quitting during my most burned out moments. 

Thank you to my Collegian colleagues, whether you’re another reporter I collaborated with or a photographer I only coordinated with via text: You made some amazing stories possible.

Thank you to all the readers who told me what they thought of my articles. As much as I enjoy screaming into the void, it’s also nice when the void responds.

And a huge thank you to all the sources who have ever talked to me. I’ve loved learning your stories, and I’ll always be grateful that you let me tell them.

Goodbye, Collegian.

Thank you for your time,

Samantha Ye

Samantha Ye can no longer be reached at news@collegian.com but can still be reached on Twitter @samxye4.

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