For some people, a crazy, unpredictable schedule can be daunting. One day, you’re sitting in class, completely focused. The next, you’re scrambling to prepare for an interview, while last night’s homework sits unfinished. But for me, this is normal.
Welcome to the life of a student journalist.
I’m going on my sixth year being a student journalist and my third year being a student journalist for The Volante. At this point, I’m quite familiar with the unexpected nature of being a journalist. You don’t have a set schedule. Your life isn’t the same everyday. And as a student journalist, you get used to this at a young age.
In the last three years, being involved in The Volante has given me countless opportunities to push myself to the limits, test my skills and face challenge after challenge.
But nothing could’ve prepared me for this past spring semester.
Every story I’ve written, every skill I’ve learned and every obstacle I’ve combated in my time as a journalist came into play this semester. It started off normally, or as normal as it can be in a crazy, stressful newsroom. This spring, we had a younger staff and more dedication and loyalty than I had ever seen in The Volante. This staff not only faced the fast-paced, overwhelming responsibilities that come with being a student journalist, but they craved the challenging work, just like me.
It was what I have worked for all these years. This is exactly where I wanted to be. Being managing editor is a demanding job, but it didn’t feel like work. Editing story after story, staying organized on where everything and everyone was and assisting my editor-in-chief with whatever I could were just a few of the things I did on a daily basis. It’s been the most challenging, yet the most rewarding position I’ve held on The Volante.
And this semester, it came with a twist. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, our whole newsroom was turned upside down. The rhythm we had gotten into was completely thrown off and we were forced to adapt and rework something we’ve known for so long into something entirely different. Giving up wasn’t an option. It never is, as a journalist, especially a student journalist.
In the last few weeks of our semester, we adjusted The Volante so it was an online newspaper, accessible to anyone who visited our website. We became more active than ever on our social media. We kept moving along, because nothing could stop us, not even a pandemic.
Looking back on this semester, I’m so full of appreciation for The Volante staff and the experiences I’ve had being a part of it. Not many managing editors, or reporters, can say they worked through a pandemic. But I can. And so can the other amazing student journalists who made this possible.
This fall, I will enter my final semester on The Volante staff. It’s bittersweet, handing off my managing editor position and preparing to say goodbye.
But I have no fear for the future of The Volante. With student journalists like this around, there’s not much that can’t be covered. I want to say thank you to my Volante staff. You are all amazing and dedicated. I want to say thank you to our editor-in-chief, for trusting me to be right by her side throughout this crazy semester.
And finally, I want to say thank you to our readers and supporters. You help us keep going.