NW seniors say farewell to campus life

North Wind Staff

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Ray Bressette – Editor in Chief:

What a crazy ride the past three years have been.

When I started at The North Wind, I was a nervous news reporter just hoping I could cover a hockey and basketball game someday. I don’t think any of us knew the series of events that were about to unfold.

Our paper has gone to hell and back the last few years. We’ve gone through transformations and experiments before your very eyes, from former writers reporting on coffee to saying “FOIA” so many times it almost made all of you throw up.

But I did get to cover those hockey and basketball games. And when it was my turn step up and lead the newspaper to a new era, I’d like to think we gained back the trust and respect of the NMU community.

The people I’ve had the privilege to meet and work with in my three years here have been phenomenal. We’ve seen the good and bad sides of the university as well as ourselves, and this paper is in a better state it has ever been in before. It wasn’t always easy, and I couldn’t have gotten through it without the support of my fiancée, Katherine. That being said, I know we’re handing this over to an amazing staff that’s going to make this paper even better next year.

So as I reflect on my time at NMU, working with some amazing coaches and athletes, some of which were in the pros and others who have gone on to the major leagues, as well as many other outstanding members of the Marquette community, I realize how lucky I’ve been to have the opportunities I was given at The North Wind. We were all a family and are now moving on to bigger and better lives, but it wouldn’t be without this place we’ve all called home.

Mike Klarin – Managing Editor:

When I first stepped onto campus at NMU two years ago, I wasn’t exactly sure where I’d fit in such a small college community, but the first thing on my mind was to get active in student life and start meeting new people. While various clubs have come and gone, I’m still here at the paper, and I can’t quite figure out why.

Maybe it was the thrill of seeing my first story published in print? Or maybe it was the time I took my first police ride-along on a chilly November night? Could it be the late night bar crawls with my fellow editors after we’d put the paper to bed for the week? I’ve come to believe that who we are today is dependent on the sum of our experiences, and to be a strong person you need to have lots of them—both good and bad.

In my time at The North Wind, I’ve had the opportunity to branch out and make connections all over campus, and have made lifelong friends in the office. The ups-and-downs of college life and the stress of making grades has been a challenge while balancing a fast-paced job, but as I reach graduation I know I’m a much stronger person than I was when I got here. To those who I’ve known along the way: thanks for the memories, and good luck out there.

Andy Frakes – Features Editor:

As I approach my last-ever finals week, there’s no romance in it for me. I don’t think it’s fun anymore to sit up all night in the LRC drinking the free coffee and steeling myself against the grip of utter exhaustion. I just want to be done, to be something other than a college student. It’s time.

I’ve made and lost a lot of friends since I came here in the fall of 2011; I’ve formed and dispelled life theories, fallen in love with and then come to despise a lot of cocktail recipes and I’ve undergone not one but two changes in my academic major. NMU got my attention with the pre-architecture degree and I’m leaving it with a head-start in journalism and communications. I’ve stopped being a triathlete for the time being, and I’ve become a photographer. But really, it isn’t necessarily about acquiring new things, although I’ve done plenty of that. It’s about whittling down your dim and unfocused identity at the end of high school, sharpening yourself and cutting away the junk until you start to see the shape of someone who can make it in the adult world.

I’ll have to get back to you on that after I finish this round of job interviews. In two months I could be in Detroit, New York City, Minneapolis, Chicago or a handful of other hotspots. And I could be living with my parents. But like Howard Schultz said about his alma mater, NMU is a great place to figure ourselves out and learn what we do (and don’t) want to do. I’m happy enough to walk away with that.

Josh Stanton – Online Editor:

Man, the past 4+ years of school have been a whirlwind, filled with new experiences, new people, new outlooks and further knowledge that I am so happy to have gained. NMU is an incredible school and the Marquette area has proven to be the best place possible for my school career.

To begin, I would like to thank my professors. They’re the ones who have made my experience in the classroom so incredible and useful. I have learned more from them about life and careers than they know and their advice is greatly appreciated. I would like to give a huge shout out to Dr. Brady and Jim McCommons, my two favorite professors along the way. As I look ahead, I feel prepared in so many ways because of the high standards they have held me to.

Lastly, to every student, roommate and friend I’ve made here at NMU, I thank you for the fun times. There’s far too many to name names, but it’s been a good ride and I love all of you. Stay
curious, friends.

Emma Finkbeiner – Assistant News Editor:

My student experience at NMU has been exciting and unpredictable. It has been full of opportunity and risk. It has been characterized by a variety of valuable learning experiences, whether they originated from success or failure. But perhaps the most transformative experience I had at NMU was my time working for this student newspaper. I started as the news editor and ascended to editor-in-chief during a period of time some would say was embroiled with controversy.

Despite the opinions you may have about The North Wind, it is one of the best places to learn from real mistakes and triumphs. It fosters a culture of fast-paced hard work, instant camaraderie and a passion for telling the stories of all things good and bad about this university to inform an audience. So keep engaging with this forum. Maybe even consider writing or working for us. Or just walk into the office and meet the hard working students. It is an opportunity to move past your comfort zone and better understand all that NMU has to offer.

The North Wind will continue to capture the history of NMU, provide a valuable experience for the student employee and act as a campus resource to the student reader, one story at a time. A student newspaper with the freedoms we have is truly a service to any public university.