Leaving is never easy, but it can teach you to be grateful

By: Alexis Stallard, Editor-In-Chief

You know what they say: All good things must come to an end. It’s an inescapable truth of this life, and I am just another victim in a long line of others before me. 

This is my last issue as the editor-in-chief of The Vantage, and it has been a very rewarding experience. And no, I’m not leaving for good: You’ll still see my name here every once in a while. It’s just that as graduation looms closer, adult responsibilities do too, so I’m needing to pass the reins on to someone else. 

While sometimes crazy, the past two years have really taught me a lot about myself and what I want for my future. It has helped me create friendships and has offered experiences I never would have had the access to otherwise. If I ever got a redo in life, I would choose this path every time. 

I first joined the Vantage in the spring semester of my sophomore year. I’d just spent a year as a biology major but had switched to sports communication. I thought my life would follow the path of sports and that would be all. Little did I know, three very influential people would band together and bully me into joining as an editor. I say “bully” with much love and affection. In all reality, it was just some dedicated convincing. 

Then, 10 months after delving into the world of journalism and four months after starting work as a Vantage section editor, I was asked to be in charge of the whole thing. It felt overwhelming, and at times it was, but I have become a much better student and person through my work on The Vantage. 

While it’s only been two years, it feels like I’ve always been a part of The Vantage at Newman. Denise Neil, our adviser, has seen me through more than a few of my Redbull-fueled editing nights and Taylor Swift love letters. Regardless of how stable my mental health was, she has always been a rock for me to cling to in the raging storm that is a student newspaper. 

What the paper has really taught me is that if you really believe something, say it with conviction. People rarely like you putting them in a light that they refuse to see themselves in. It taught me a lot of patience, fortitude and confidence to stand up for myself and the rest of my staff. Being spineless and fickle in today’s world only gets you trampled; Freshman-me would be in awe of senior-me. 

To the students: I really hope that I helped shape the paper into something that mattered to you at least once or twice. The Vantage is “The Student Voice of Newman University,” and my goal was always to cover things that you cared about. If I didn’t do that, maybe you can. Join the Vantage. Write letters to the editor. Talk to your fellow classmates who are on The Vantage. There are plenty of ways to tell them what you do care about.

Finally, I would just like to thank all the people who saw me through to this point. My family is at the top of that list, but there are several professors who encouraged and shaped the way I write. A large thank you to my bullies Denise, Dr. Audrey Hane and former Vantage editor Tejay Cleland: Without you, I likely never would have grown into the person I am today. 

Thank you all for reading my boring stories, my serious stories, and the stories I have the utmost pride in – like my aforementioned Taylor Swift articles. Whatever you read, I hope it was mostly painless and, God-willing, just a little enjoyable. 

PHOTO: Courtesy photo, Unsplash