Gabby Carlson | Echo
The Echo is not only eight pages of stories I look through every week, it's my community.
Most people who pick up an Echo on Friday at 10:50 a.m. can flip to the Features page and see the names of dedicated writers, photographers, designers and editors who they may or may not know on the masthead. Those people have become the community I never knew I needed.
Becoming co-editor in chief was a daunting challenge I strived to figure out.
But now, as I look back over a year of weekly meetings where I ate chips and dip with Sam, Grace and Drew, Jackie yelling at me from the other room to ask a question, hard conversations with important people on campus and nights where everything went wrong but a paper still happened for the next day, I realize this is not a position I could figure out. There is no right way to do this job and not a chance I was going to be able to use reason to try and figure it out.
So after a few struggling weeks of trying to make everything fit how I thought it should go, and being miserably stressed in the process, I decided to let it go, and let God.
Every single person on staff this year has handled their position with professionalism and poise, but we have had such a fun time building a paper for this campus every week. This isn't to say a problem didn't arise every week, but the staff Chrysa and I frantically put together in the spring always came together to help each other and create a paper we are proud to stand behind.
One of the first things you hear when you step on campus is Taylor is all about community. I am involved in a few communities around campus, but The Echo is where I have been able to grow and thrive for the last three years. So this year, it has been a privilege to watch that community thrive in The Echo office, the Mac lab and around campus.
The Echo is special place for community because not only are we becoming friends and making memories, we are creating something that will be part of university history each week. I think the point of The Echo is to produce good work that accurately represents our time at the university. The fact that we all enjoy each other and want be in each others' lives is an added bonus.
Saying I feel grateful for my formation and time on The Echo is an understatement. I will always remember the late nights, the pizza parties, laughing and crying with Chrysa, meeting aspiring writers and being one myself and it's going to be bittersweet. But despite the days that were hard and I wanted to quit, The Echo showed me who I strived to be and gave me the community I needed to figure that out.
How this office in Rupp and a random ad in the student announcements happened to form my college career, I'll never figure out. But I don't have to. When a scared sophomore me walked in to that office for the first time, God knew the plan for the next three years. It was okay that I hadn't picked up an Echo until the night before my interview (sorry Becca and Cassidy). I will never figure out how to do the job I am tasked completely.
Breathe in, breathe out. Let it be and let God.