david farewell

OPINION  —  Well, my term as editor-in-chief at The Vermilion is over, and to be completely honest I’m not sure how to feel about it. 

On one hand, this was probably the most stressful year of my life, as I’m sure it was for many. We had five hurricanes and a global pandemic, both in one year. So yeah, having the stress that came with this job was a lot. I wanted to pull my hair out many times, and I’m sure everyone on staff at The Vermilion wanted to do the same thing. 

But on the other hand, getting to know the other staff members and editors has been an invaluable experience that I wouldn’t trade for the world. All of you are so talented and I appreciate every second I’ve had working with you all. And while I might not know exactly what to say about my time as editor-in-chief, there is one thing I know I want to say, and that’s thank you to all the hard-working and talented people at this paper.

Let’s start with Cole. I don’t think I can even express how much you’ve done for the paper, not only during my time as editor-in-chief, but in the almost four years that you’ve been in charge of the design. I can’t even begin to express how much you’ve done for us. I can’t even begin to count how many times your graphics blew me away, and you’ve always been there when we needed you, no exceptions. There wouldn’t even be a paper without you.

Morri, I’m so impressed with how much you’ve taken on this semester. You constantly surprise me with your leadership and communication skills, and you’re always thinking of new and creative ways to improve The Vermilion. No matter what you wind up doing, you’re going to go far.

Maddy, you’ve taken on so much between the website and being sports editor, and I’ve really come to enjoy your Allons pieces. Your work outside The Vermilion has been spectacular as well. I’ve never been published in anything close to Teen Vogue. I can’t wait to see where your career goes after this.

Christian, your writing skills are nothing short of impeccable, and you’ve always been reliable. When Allons was going through rough patches, we all knew we could always count on you to send in something interesting and thought-provoking. Where most people struggle to reach their word count, your growth has been in condensing all your brilliant insights down to a length that would work for The Vermilion. I’m so happy to see you get your stories to the right length without sacrificing a pinch of wisdom in your work. Most people would have just dumbed it down, but you didn’t. I think that’s a testament to your talent. I look forward to reading what you write after I’m gone, and I know it will just keep getting better. 

Amelia, you’ve always been the definition of dependable. I don’t think you’ve ever turned a story in late. Even when nothing was working out that week, you always managed to get it done. It’s been amazing seeing you grow as much as you’ve grown as a writer as well. Despite the fact that you’re very vocal about how you would never want to do journalism as a career, you’ve become an excellent news writer. 

Lena, in my time here I’ve never seen a writer as gutsy and determined as you, myself included. You’re going to go far as a reporter. You have an amazing gift for it. I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if you wound up being editor-in-chief at The Vermilion one day. I would dare say you have what it takes to write for a massive publication like The New York Times. One in 1 million people can do that, but I know you’re one of them.

Malik, you’re the best photographer The Vermilion has had in years, and we can always count on you to get the job done. If I did one thing right this whole semester, it was making you the photo coordinator. I’m confident that the photo section will continue to improve under your leadership. You’re hard-working, talented and an inspiration to the staff. I still can’t believe your reaction to seeing an active fire was to run towards it and take pictures. When we goofed and forgot to specify that the picture of the pepper in an ice cube was supposed to be a graphic, you actually froze a pepper and got a photo. You always find ways to exceed my expectations and I can’t thank you enough for all your hard work.

And John, I know you aren’t with us anymore, but you were a huge help. You were an amazing managing editor when you were here, and your expertise from four years of work at The Vermilion really helped me adjust to my position. We wouldn’t have made it through COVID-19 without you.

I could go on forever about how amazing you all are and how much I’ll miss all of you. I couldn’t have asked for a better staff, and I can’t wait to see where The Vermilion goes when I’m gone.

Best wishes,

David Reed

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