Mara Stein (pictured left) and Karrie Spychalski (pictured right). 

Whenever I get nostalgic about being a senior and graduating in 20-something days, I often find myself reflecting on how far I’ve come over the past four years. In terms of personal, academic and professional growth, I am leaving Colgate as a completely different person than I entered it. I think this transformation can best be seen through my involvement in the Maroon-News.

I first joined the paper as a first-year looking to meet people. As someone who has a twin sister and who never had to make new friends without her, I had a hard time adjusting to life at college on my own. I distinctly remember going to my first writer’s meeting and standing outside the office door for so long because I was afraid to walk in on my own. I ended up writing for the Arts & Features section, which forced me to attend events on campus that I otherwise wouldn’t have and talk to my peers at those events to get quotes for my articles. This was something I was terrified to do at first, but over the course of my two years as a writer, I got more comfortable with going to events alone and talking to strangers.

I became the Head Editor of the Arts & Features section during my junior year and suddenly faced a new set of challenges that the Maroon-News would help me work through. I was afraid to speak my mind in staff meetings and to tell my assistant editors what I needed from them. Over time, again, I got more comfortable in this position and discovered that I have the skills needed to thrive in a leadership position.

So I rose through the ranks at the Maroon-News and eventually grew in confidence and skill enough to become Editor-in-Chief my senior year. I see this privilege and experience as the culmination of the growth I have undergone at Colgate and looking back, I am so glad I got involved with this amazing institution so early on in my Colgate career. To grow enough that you eventually get to run the organization you were once hesitant to join on your own, especially one that you care so much about, is an incredible thing and I will always be grateful to the Maroon-News for allowing me this opportunity.

By Karrie Spychalski, Editor-in-Chief

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