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The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

The Student News Site of Colorado State University

The Rocky Mountain Collegian

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Pallemaerts: All my love to The Collegian

Lauren+Pallemaerts
Collegian | Garrett Mogel
Lauren Pallemaerts

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.

Joining The Rocky Mountain Collegian changed the trajectory of my college experience. I started at Colorado State University as a chronically introverted English major during the height of the pandemic in 2020, and I was quickly convinced by the journalism department and Rocky Mountain Student Media staff to switch my major and jump headfirst into a 132-yearlong legacy of journalism by students, for students.

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I had no other choice; The Collegian is full of the brightest, most driven, goofiest, most creative students at CSU, and no one could want anything more than to be one of them. The first few faces to greet me on this campus — besides the employees handing me a plastic COVID-19 test vial to spit into on a weekly basis — were the smiling eyes of Collegian staffers above their masks. The Collegian was a home to me when I had just moved away from mine; the sense of community it offers is what the college experience is all about.

On my very first shift as a copy editor for The Collegian, I flagged an advertisement that read, “Mountian Chruch.” We don’t edit ads, but we called the church to get an updated version in time for the paper to go to print later that night. While I may or may not have been chasing that high ever since, I will stand by my biased opinion that the copy desk is tasked with one of the highest responsibilities of all: being the newspaper’s last line of defense against misinformation, inaccessibility and, yes, typos.

To anyone who’s ever received a correction or revision from me, I can promise they were full of love, and I was continually inspired by the reporting from each desk. Watching the arts and culture desk split into two vibrant and equally essential desks; the inception of our science desk; and the sports desk’s expansion into extensive recap coverage and a new newsletter all remind me how much change I’ve seen The Collegian benefit from during my tenure. You’re all amazing.

Working for student media is the best thing you can do for yourself — professionally and personally. Holding a management position has tied me inextricably to this newspaper. I’ll be pinching myself for years to come that I played a role in election reporting, protest coverage and the most defensible satire on my college campus, even getting to hand-deliver our special April Fools’ edition this year. Keep the tradition going.

It’s been a privilege to work alongside talented reporters, editors and glowing human beings Allie Seibel and Ivy Secrest, and print directors Caden Proulx and Nathan Carmody astounded me with their masterpiece designs every production night. I will cherish every night in that newsroom under string lights when we usually (always) wanted to gab rather than work — until deadlines got in the way.

I can’t forget the illustrious legacy of night editors that shaped me into the editor I’m graduating as. Renee Ziel and Rachel Baschnagel are two of the most stunningly accomplished creatives I know, and I want them to know they continue to be role models of mine — I will always look up to them wherever I end up next.

Now for the hardest goodbye: To my copy editors who are reading this long before it publishes, I hope you know how much you mean to me. Mentoring the same desk that I joined three and a half years ago has far surpassed anything else as the highlight of my college experience. Training recently became my favorite part of my job, hammering home all our Associated Press Style and fact-checking rules to the point that I’ve now arrived at: I’m ready to leave The Collegian in good hands.

To Emma Ward, Lexi Urbom and Proulx, it’s been a privilege to watch you all leave your mark on The Collegian. You’ve made the newsroom a lovely place to be. To Will Engle, you’d do well to remember your allegiance to copy in your years ahead, which I’m sure will be full of successes wherever you land. To Claire Vogl and Adah McMillan, the copy desk couldn’t be in better hands next year. I’ve watched you all grow into exemplary editors and beautiful friends.

I’ll miss the hundreds of long weeknights spent surrounded by some of CSU’s finest student journalists. Now it feels like they were never long enough. Working four nights a week in a basement wasn’t so bad when it was with you. I’ll miss you guys.

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Lauren Pallemaerts was the 2023-24 executive editor of The Rocky Mountain Collegian. She can no longer be reached at copy@collegian.com, but she can be reached on Twitter @lpallemaerts.

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About the Contributors
Lauren Pallemaerts
Lauren Pallemaerts, Executive Editor
Lauren Pallemaerts is the executive editor for The Rocky Mountain Collegian, running the copy desk, collaborating with the other editors on production nights and editing every piece of digital and print content for style, grammar, syntax, ethics, punctuation, accuracy and readability. Pallemaerts came to Colorado State University as an English major from Seattle, but she soon found a home in the journalism and media communication department and declared an English minor to pursue her passions for storytelling and contributing to an informed society. The JMC department has made her feel welcome and connected her with a way to serve the CSU community directly. Now in her senior year, her interests include writing, reading, linguistics, hiking and traveling; her writing ranges from fiction to movie reviews and news, including features on local bookstores and the performing arts. Pallemaerts has studied journalism in Oxford, England, through a New York Times summer program and just returned from a semester abroad studying film and the arts in Exeter, England. She is grateful The Collegian saw what it did in her because it's allowed her to learn the ins and outs of a newsroom from early on in her college career. Pallemaerts' favorite part of her job is working alongside her peers to create a product by students, for students.
Garrett Mogel
Garrett Mogel, Photo Director
Garrett Mogel is a third-year journalism student with a second field in philosophy. He is one of two photo directors for the 2023-24 school year.  Growing up in Colorado and surrounded by dreamlike landscapes and adventure sports, it was only a matter of time before Mogel picked up a camera. For over a decade, Mogel explored Colorado, portaging rivers, postholing through several feet of snow, rappelling over cliffs and skinning up mountains, all with a camera in hand. Through his adventures, Mogel began attaching stories to images and began to engage viewers in conversation about their favorite areas. Eventually, Mogel’s passion for photography and storytelling drew him to pursue a degree and career in photojournalism.  In his years at college, Mogel has worked with The Collegian every year. In progressing through the publication, Mogel has seen all the ways student media fosters growth both individually as well as through collaboration. Additionally, the opportunity to witness how impactful a story can be on a personal, organizational and community level is his greatest lesson thus far.  Beyond The Collegian, Mogel still finds time to appreciate his Colorado upbringing. When not on assignment, he can usually be found mountain biking, skiing, camping, river surfing or at home planning his next adventure.

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