You’re not my editor—not even my GA editor—yet I feel like I should direct my first “Letter to the Editor” post to you, since you had a hand in getting me to come to Mizzou.
I know you’ve met hundreds of prospective students over the years, but when I first came to Mizzou on a college visit in June 2008, I remember you distinctly as THE journalism faculty member I had the fortune of meeting.
That day in June was miserable: hot one minute, rainy the next. Being from Chicago, I had never experienced Missouri weather, so the suddenly-hot, suddenly-rainy thing didn’t really jive for me. I was wearing an uncomfortable new pair of high-heeled sandals because I was a high school junior trying to look like a college student and it was the first college tour I had ever been on. To this day, they’re still the most uncomfortable shoes I own.
Still, my experience touring the campus was probably dead-on to Harry Potter’s first tour of Hogwarts: pure magic.
So after the tour of campus and the meeting with the honors professor, I got a tour of the journalism school. At the time, journalism was the way to make money writing while crafting my next best-seller. Now, it’s quite a bit more to me. But I digress—that’ll come in a later blog post.
We went into the newsroom, which at the time seemed a lot bigger than it actually is, and saw some students working the desks. You were the editor we were able to meet, and you picked one girl out of our group and told her she had “an aura about her” that told you she was from Wisconsin.
(Creepy that I remember this, I know. It just shows the impact that day had on me, I guess).
Then you saw me and apologized for sort of excluding me, which really hadn’t occurred to me at that moment because I was too busy being mesmerized by the newsroom atmosphere. I don’t remember the exact exchange, but my mom still says she saw a “connect” happen. She also remembers you telling her if she doesn’t hear from me for a few days to call you because you’ll tell her you’re keeping me busy.
Well, I’m pretty sure that the Wisconsin girl didn’t come back; she seemed to have her eyes set on ritzy-snitzy Northwestern or Brown when we were in the beginning stage of our tour. But I’m here, and even before hitting the newsroom I knew you would be a driving force for me at the Missourian.
When my good friend Jordan Durham told me she was dropping journalism last spring, she said she went to you to talk about it. I didn’t doubt for a minute you were the right person to talk to, and she said that you helped her out quite a bit.
Even three weeks into my Missourian experience, I’ve enjoyed receiving accolades from you every so often. You’re probably not going to see this post until I tell you about it sometime tomorrow (or today, since it’s past midnight). I just wanted to put it in writing how much of a driving force you’ve been in my Mizzou experience—and it hasn’t even been a month.
P.S. Jeanne, don’t be jealous. I’ll be writing to you next.