Ellise1By Ellise Shafer, ’17

August 3, 2014. I walked into Room 221 not having the slightest idea of what being on Arlingtonian staff would be like. I was surrounded by upperclassmen, only a few of which I knew well, and felt insecure in my position as News Editor. I was honored to have an editor position as only a sophomore, but also scared. Would people ignore me? Would I make any friends? Little did I know that there wasn’t any reason for these questions to be plaguing my mind.

Throughout Arlingtonian camp and the beginning of the year, I found myself making friends easier than I thought. It was such a relief to find others who shared the same passion for writing that I do, and first period soon became my favorite class of the day. Each morning, I could always look forward to an environment filled with jokes and friendly faces. I knew that I could count on anyone for help, whether it was an issue with our graphics program or a personal dilemma.

Most importantly, though, I was never treated like I was younger or the “baby” of the group, even though I am only a sophomore. I always felt like an equal, and learned to see myself that way as well. This resulted in what I feel has been an immense growth for myself as an individual, and I cannot thank everyone enough for all of the fun and hard work we have accomplished this year.

To add to my personal development, being on Arlingtonian staff affirmed a growing desire to make journalism my career. Beforehand, I was unsure of how a newsroom worked or what being on a magazine staff would be like. But, thanks to Arlingtonian, I was able to get pretty close to the reality of what being a working journalist is. Sharing your ideas with the staff, scrounging for interviews, coming up with creative layouts and begging for ads are just a few of the experiences that I know will aid me in my further pursuit as a journalist. The skills that I have learned so far are irreplaceable and have even led me to winning several awards for my pieces: two in the Scholastic Writing Awards, as well as a Superior award in Two-Person Reporting from the Ohio Scholastic Media Association. However, I know none of these accomplishments would have been possible without the help of the rest of the staff. It truly is a team effort.

Although I’m sad for this school year to come to a close and to see seniors who I’ve grown close to leave, I know that they will all continue to do great things. As for me, I can’t wait to continue carrying on the Arlingtonian legacy.