Senior Column- Kristin Baldwin


Although it was tempting to fill this column with editorial board-related inside jokes, I resisted. But just so you know, we have a lot of them. And we think they’re very funny.

Instead, I’ll attempt to share some of the knowledge I’ve gained during my experience of seven semesters with The Campus newspaper.

Since a college is a place of learning, I thought it would be fitting to relate what I’ve learned over the course of my Allegheny education. It’s fair to say that most of my education occurred outside the classroom.

Writing for this newspaper was easily the most worthwhile thing I did during my four years here. I met some of my best friends, who only became best friends because we were forced to work together under a tight deadline on a weekly basis (they also became such good friends because they are incredible people).

I’ve also learned a lot about life while producing a weekly paper in this tiny, ill–equipped newsroom (I’ll always be bitter about the ancient PCs, tiny monitors, and hardly–working keyboards we have to use).

I’ve learned that surrounding myself with positive, communicative, reliable people is the best way to live.

I’ve learned that everyone has a worthwhile story to tell. Listening to those stories, analyzing them, and arranging them into a reader-friendly format is what it’s all about.

While Allegheny likes to promote itself as a diverse place, it is not. Do whatever you can to give yourself the opportunity to study abroad, because no matter what anyone tells you, this college admits a whole lot of students who are very similar.

I’ve learned that it’s important to know how to DO something. Getting a good grade in a class at an un-recognizable college (sorry, no one knows about Allegheny outside a 100–mile radius) isn’t impressive to a future employer, but having a set of skills and a willingness to learn is.

I’ve learned that everyone lies. Some people lie often.

If I were to offer any advice to those of you who still have some Allegheny years ahead of you, it would be to find a passion. Yes, it sounds corny, but being passionate about something brings a kind of joy that nothing else can. I’ve found that sense of satisfaction in the newspaper, among other things; I’ve never felt as fulfilled after writing an academic paper as I have after completing a solid issue along with the rest of the staff.

I am grateful for the administrators who supported us, as well as those who didn’t––we learned a lot from both sides. I am learning to accept public and private criticism with grace.

Although I don’t want to paint myself as a martyr, being on the newspaper staff at Allegheny is an extremely thankless job. The only responses we receive are complaints (which is a grievance shared by most publications and organizations), and our hours upon hours of work in the newsroom are not rewarded financially, academically or verbally.

But we love it; we really do. And I’ve learned that creating something I’m proud of––whether or not it’s noticed by others––is what is really important.

Okay, here comes the queen of cliché remarks: Every experience is what you make of it. If you work hard, stay positive, and remain honest with yourself, good things will come to you.