COLUMN: Day 1,285: I'm stressed, I'm sad and I'll miss what I do
One thousand, two hundred and eighty-five days. My college career, which has been spent working for Central Michigan Life, all started with a question. “I’m a broadcasting major. Do I really think I’d really have a shot as a designer at CM Life?”
I walked into the CM Life office on the fourth floor of Moore Hall, Room 436, expecting a quiet, small-time operation, with journalists writing stories at a table or a couple designers at their computers.
I was so wrong.
It was a madhouse. Journalists shaking from one too many cups of coffee, an editor-in-chief with the mouth of a sailor, phones ringing in the advertising department with ad reps shooting hoops on a little tykes basketball net.
On that day — Feb. 4, 2015 — I got hooked. The day after every production, I would come home with five copies of the broadsheet newspaper. I’d be handing them out to my roommates or to other residents next to my dorm. I was just so happy to be a part of this organization. It was everything I wanted and more.
The high I felt on day one was the same every day I left the office. That did not change for four years.
When you do one thing for long enough, it can be hard to remember what actually motivated you to start in the first place. As you get older, you possibly could lose sight of the drive to do the thing you love.
Your love for what you do may waiver and your drive and determination might be close to depleted. You might question what you’re capable of anymore. For me, I love CM Life and CM Life is what motivates me. It shows me that I am capable of anything I put my mind to.
Being a designer for CM Life over these past four years has given me an outlet to simply do. I haven’t had to worry about anything at all except make newspapers in whatever way I see fit. Making newspapers gives me the motivation to create.
To the best of my knowledge, I have designed 71 covers for this newspaper. Twenty-eight of those were designed this semester.
It amazes me thinking about how many late-night design shifts I have survived. During production nights, I didn’t think about how crazy it was in the moment, because it was bliss. It was easy, and it was always fun. For 12 hours a day, I got to do the thing that I love most in the world: making newspapers.
Just to be clear, this job isn’t easy. It is a challenge. I come into work every day knowing I’m probably going to encounter something new. If you’re someone who love a challenge, someone who wants to push themselves to work harder every day, then this is the place for you.
This organization didn’t just give me design skills. It showed me how a news organization writes proper hard journalism and showed me how much hard work goes into writing a good story. I learned this by watching the efforts of dozens of journalists, my friends, who are now working across the country. They gave me a look into their world and I am amazed by what I have seen.
CM Life has been my motivation for my entire college career. It was a place that forced me to rise to the occasion. It was a place that gave me approachable challenges and meaningful outcomes. CM Life is what gets me out of bed in the morning and what makes me sleep well at night.
It is the reason I have become the man I am today. The experiences I have gained through my time here will live on with me forever.
From the staff of Spring 2015 to the current Fall 2018 staff, you have no idea how much each and every one of you have impacted my life in a positive way.
To everyone at CM Life, Thank you.