My time at Illinois Tech is finally drawing to a close. After five long years, I’m completing my undergraduate degree. It was a long journey that felt like it would never end, but here it is. It was not an easy time. I won’t elaborate too much on the difficulties, but I struggled a lot. My time here was filled with hardships and challenges but also easily some of my best memories. I can confidently say that TechNews was responsible for nearly all of the good parts. I wanted to write one more article before I head out, and yeah it’s cliche, but I want to give credit to the organization that truly changed my life.
When I first started school here five years ago, I never would’ve envisioned joining a newspaper. I was incredibly insecure about my writing skills (and remained that way until maybe two years ago), antisocial, and generally disinterested in joining clubs. My focus wasn’t making friends, it was to merely focus on my work and get a degree. My joining TechNews was fully because of outgoing editor-in-chief (EIC) Alexandra (Lexi) Detweiler. We started as randomly assigned roommates and quickly became best friends, inseparable ever since. I learned about TechNews through her; she was a copy editor and would often tell me about the conversations and people that frequented the TechNews office at the time. While I wasn’t confident in my writing skills I was very confident in my grammar skills, and I decided to join as a copy editor during the spring semester of my first year.
Those people that frequented the office would later become some of my best and closest friends. What started as a once a week job, turned into spending my free time there. Once my second year started, almost my entire day, from morning until MTCC closed, I’d stay in the TechNews office with my friends. As the years went by, the amount of friends grew. Some of my fondest memories are in that office and I will miss it so much. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the foot traffic in the office has decreased to just Detweiler and me, but relics of past members and events are still strewn about the office. Our old friend group has all graduated with the two of us left, but we all regularly talk as a group and have frequent calls.
I joined the TechNews editorial board and became assistant editor-in-chief (AEIC) during my third year and have been in the position since. The acquisition of this position certainly made TechNews a much larger time commitment for me (definitely adding to my already hefty workload), but I don’t regret it at all. I’ve had the privilege of working with two amazing editor-in-chiefs, Detweiler and Ethan Castro, both of which made this job enjoyable and who I love to pieces. I also started writing more and realized I didn’t actually hate it. I’ve published pieces in this paper that I’m genuinely proud of, my most prized piece being the one I wrote about the Uyghur concentration camps. I regret not writing more, but I’m happy with all the pieces I did contribute. After some introspection I realized that journalism is where my passion lies, and I will be attending DePaul University this fall for their Master’s in Journalism program. I plan to pursue a career in science writing and journalism. I would never have considered this career path if I hadn’t joined TechNews.
TechNews is responsible for providing me with my lifelong best friends. It gave me a creative outlet and helped me hone my writing skills and confidence. It gave me an office space and a hang out space where I had my best memories. It ultimately helped me realize my future career path. There’s no way I could’ve predicted that joining a student organization my freshman year would lead to all these things, but I’m so incredibly grateful that I did. TechNews was easily the best decision I made at this school, and I will miss it so much. To the incoming editorial board, congratulations and good luck. I trust you all to keep the paper thriving and I look forward to reading your articles in the future. I fully believe Dan Marten and Kevin Barrera will be a fantastic EIC and AEIC respectively. I know TechNews is in good hands. Take care of our newspaper; keep it alive. To anyone interested in joining, I absolutely encourage you to do so. To our writers and editors, you guys keep this paper running and I’m so proud of you all. To Lexi Detweiler, thank you for joining five years ago. I wouldn’t have joined if you didn’t first. You’ve been an excellent editor-in-chief and it’s been more than a pleasure working alongside you. To anyone else reading this, thank you, both for reading this article and also for reading this paper as a whole. You guys are why we do this. And to TechNews, thank you for everything. Out of everything at this school, I’ll miss you the most.