The Rest Is History…

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Published June 21, 2021
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The Montclarion
Ian Long | The Montclarion

There are many things I saw myself doing when I stepped foot onto Montclair State University’s campus back in the fall of 2017. I saw myself becoming a teacher and meeting lifelong friends, but I never could have imagined that four years later I would be sadly saying goodbye to the school newspaper.

The Montclarion was never part of that original four-year plan I had set up for myself at 18 years old. To be honest, I didn’t even know we had a school newspaper until I attended my first club fair. And even then, I envisioned The Montclarion as the perfect place for my then-roommate, Jen Losos. I was the teacher, she was the writer and I never thought our two career paths would cross.

By my junior year, she finally convinced me to come to a Wednesday meeting in The School of Communication and Media for The Montclarion. Truly, the rest is history.

Now, over a year and a half later, I have found that my life has been forever changed because of that single Wednesday meeting in February 2020. I started writing for the opinion section, a place where I never saw myself as adding any value to.

I constantly asked myself, “Who would want to listen to what you have to say?” But after writing my first article, I found lots of people read and cared about what I had to say. I even had professors commenting on my articles. I’ve been writing ever since.

The Montclarion not only helped me see the value and power within my voice, but it also took me out of my comfort zone of the education world I was so used to and it thrust me into the brilliant and ever-changing world of journalism. It broadened my horizons and opened my eyes to another world I have really grown to enjoy being a part of.

While I’m not earning my degree in journalism or seeking a career path in the industry, I am actively looking for ways to include journalism into my future social studies classroom. Whether it is helping advise a student-run newspaper, or bringing journalism into the way my students study social studies, I see myself never living without one foot in the journalism world wherever I may end up in the future.

Not only was I able to write for The Montclarion, but I was able to join the amazing copy editing team under my best friend, Jen, and had the opportunity to be co-chief copy editor myself with my dear friend, Lauren Lamantia. Being part of the copy world was something I am forever grateful for and it was an experience I will cherish forever.

I want to thank Thomas Neira and Sam Impaglia for being a steady light and constant support throughout this past year and for believing in my abilities as a copy editor and writer. I only wish we could have watched more Jeopardy and spent more time in the office before we had to say our goodbyes.

I also want to thank all of the copy girls this year for being the best and most reliable group to lean on, especially in the era of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. It was not always easy, but with you all at my side it made this year so much more enjoyable.

To all the editorial staff, thank you for being so kind and funny and just an absolute blast to work with. It was easy to do my job with all you wonderful people showing unwavering support with each article or layout you sent.

Finally, I started my college career with Jen, and I want to end my goodbye by saying thank you to her. Not only did she introduce me to journalism and The Montclarion, but she helped me find my voice and introduced me to the love of my life in the process. Thank you, Jen, for giving me some of the best memories of my life and for giving me my future.

It is never easy to say goodbye, especially to something that means so much to me, but The Montclarion gave me so much and I only wish I could give it back half as much in return. I will never forget my time here and it will hold a special place in my heart forever. Thank you.

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