Here we are. After three years, six semesters, (roughly) 540 days, and countless memories, my time with The Chant concludes.
As I write the very letter I read from my previous two Editor-in Chiefs in “cambria 12-point font, double spaced,” several conflicting feelings erupt throughout my mind—nostalgia, excitement, empty, and full. However, none of these are more prevalent than the pride in my heart for both the time I spent in room 610 and for every single staff member throughout my three years.
But man, 2015-2016 sure did feel like the perfect finale.
Without further ado, I bid you all farewell.
To Alex: I figured it fit to start with someone I began with (sorry, Sarah, alphabetical order owned the tiebreaker). What your photography talents entail, your videography skills are that much better. I watch how you use multimedia in awe and utter confusion. Although your constant showtunes and musical songs continue to make my ears bleed, I will miss your excited rampages and passion for honing your craft.
To Sarah: The ultimate Starbucks reporter, enthusiast, connoisseur, advocate, and any other fitting description. You will always stay close in my heart for the pub doc socks, to this day, the greatest gift I will ever receive. With all of your health issues, I am so happy to see your constant bubbly personality remain intact. Your combination of personality and brains will carry you so far at Clemson and in life.
*Disclaimer: The majority of the rest of this list is in no particular order except for the randomness of my mind*
To Caroline: You always have such a positive outlook and are so kindhearted. Your willingness and enthusiasm bodes well for the future. I know you will hit your stride next year.
To Philip: I will miss you and your deafening laugh so much—or shall I say, numerously. I have never seen someone so natural and effective at interviewing than you, making you the perfect candidate for Features editor. Observing your peculiar actions and phrases became an annual highlight of my day. And no, I will not fight you.
To Autumn: I will never not make fun of your dramatic subtweets. It had to be said. Your “group,” while obnoxiously loud, emulates the very soul of that class. You three care and work so well together. I may never learn how to spell your last name, but I will surely recognize it when it is shown as the writer for a fashion blog, makeup, or any kind of entertainment site.
To Melissa: I’m so glad that you are so passionate about vegetarianism and that you want to make a difference. Keep informing others of the effects and of your cause. Keep taking photos and working hard to become the best person you can. However, I’m still going to enjoy all of the wonderful flavors that beef and chicken bring me.
To Michael: You have such a talent for identifying the intricacies of sports and diving in to find the smallest of details about a team, and it shows. I am absolutely confident that you will become an incredible sports editor next year because of that, but also because of your innate sense to help your friends perfect their stories. I hope you take over and sit along Emmett for the broadcasts next year, you’d do a fantastic job.
To Chloe: You have grown so much throughout your year and I cannot wait to see how you tackle the challenge of becoming an editor. It’s a difficult job, but a rewarding one. As much as I make fun of you for it, the fact that you have yourself as your wallpaper is absolutely hilarious. Please keep it forever.
To Nadya: Your photography skills come second to none. I have never seen someone take better photos of live sporting events than you have this entire year. Your social media presence will benefit you down the road, and your photography skills will lead to becoming photo editor, I’m confident in it. Keep working hard and keep idolizing Drake. I’m going to miss you judgingly staring at me more than you know.
To Avery: Who knew we’d come from Kindergarten apple projects to here? I’m so glad you joined staff because your talents for design and photography are plentiful, but because we were able to regain our friendship. I’ll miss taking our “laps” around school to prevent from being the first in class even though they never worked. See you in The Commons.
To Gracie: I feel as though you journaled about the wondrous weirdness that goes on through the Pub Office. That, or we put you in therapy due to the constant, accidental shunning. Whichever it may be, you will forever go down as the best part of the Pub Office video.
To Gabby: Your passion and constant flow of ideas reinvigorates me. Your strive to change the world inspires me. Your talent and unwavering determination motivates me. You have so much going for you and I cannot wait to see where it goes. Do not worry about the future. Yes, it is scary, but it all comes in due time, and everything happens for a reason. Remember that.
To Dylan: Politics, while your forte, is not at all the extent of you. Your sense of humor, passion for learning, and conversational skills are matched by an entrepreneurial spirit that bodes well for your future. Keep working hard, but remember to sleep and take breaks when needed. Play some Madden Mobile (where I still have no idea how you have so many fans with how poorly you play).
To Riley: Hey man! I do not know what I would do if we did not share two classes together. You make me laugh more than anyone else. Your cheerful spirit and overwhelming intelligence puts you in the perfect spot for the future. I’m going to miss our inside jokes with Ms. Foster and awkward moments galore.
To Fatima: Opinions editor served as the perfect spot for you, as you shined in both your writing and assisting to other writers reaching their highest potential. I love your desire to compete and pester everyone on their beliefs. While tiresome, it helps everyone convey better arguments and hone their opinions in. However, you are still wrong about Harry Potter.
To Nabila: We started in Freshman year Honors Biology, and here we are. You are talented in so many different ways, from photography to make up. You have the ability to brighten someone’s day instantly. I can’t wait to see what you do in the future, Nabs.
To Kat: What can I say? To put it simply, you are the best journalist I have ever seen step into room 61-0. From day one, I knew that you were going to immediately improve the staff, and you did just that. Your awards speak for themselves, but your work does so much more. You embody everything a journalist is, from marking every detail about an interview to pushing the boundaries and searching for more. You do it all, Shambaugh. I am a better journalist because I met and worked with you, and for that, I thank you.
To Lubbs: You’ve been my boy since your first day on staff. From helping each other with stories to AP Lang papers to music and, most importantly, sharing sports, you have been my brother through it all. Easily the best sports reporter (and headline writer) I know, I’m looking forward to reuniting at ESPN in the future.
To Anabel: Man, we’ve been through a lot. We put in blood, sweat, and tears into this publication, and you are the only other person to understand the stress and mental fortitude necessary on some days. But through it all, you have been my go-to and the best copy editor I could have asked for. I cannot say enough things about what you have done, and no matter the amount of credit you are given, it will never be enough. I’m so proud of where you have come from and where you are going, and you are certainly not done yet.
To Emmett: I challenged you to strive and work towards becoming Editor-in Chief, and you stepped up to the plate just like when we played Little League together. I see the hunger and the dedication to improving the publication and yourself and it comforts me in knowing The Chant will be in better hands next year than ever before. Keep innovating, whether it be podcasts, broadcasts, or whatever else you will try. Being Editor-in Chief is one of the most stressful times of your high school life, but hands-down the most rewarding. Enjoy your next year and give it everything you have, because it will go by faster than you realize. Stop talking about continuing on the “legacy.” Instead, create your own. This is your time, own it.
To… uh… you know who you are: As I write this to you, I have another day or so of being your student, so I’ll keep the names as awkward as it’s been since my first day. I really do not know how it’s ending. It feels like yesterday I was a lost eighth grader stumbling into your classroom, being escorted by another awkward name that I cannot say. You never pushed me to join The Chant, and you had me work hard for everything I earned. For that, I desperately thank you. With all of our deep conversations filled with both triumphs and defeat, we stuck together. While I am sad I will not see you everyday like accustomed, I’m equally ecstatic to be a full-time brother. Thank you for everything.
I procrastinated as long as I could to complete this because I knew that once I finish, it really is the end. But all good things must end.
And while my time ends, The Chant’s does not due to the phenomenal people working tirelessly to provide news to their community, championing the award-winning site that will not quit. For that, I am eternally grateful.
Thank you to everyone that helped me accomplish my goals over these past three years. The reporters, photographers, editors, and readers all mean too much to put into words.
And always, remember to update the Pub Doc.