Years at Technique define Tech career

I still remember my very first assignment at the Technique. All I had to do was write about all the behind-the-scenes work that was involved in making Team Buzz a successful event. I had procrastinated, naturally, and was frantic that I was zero for 800 words the morning the assignment was due.
The rest of the day was a thrill as I raced to meet my deadline. I called my editor who gave me the contact information of several members on the executive board for Team Buzz. I set up an interview with one of the women on the board that morning. By 2:00 p.m., she had given my name to other exec members who contacted me to give me quotes for my story. One member directed me to the library where he had left donation letters and other useful information in a folder by the entrance that I could use for my story.
By 5:00 p.m., I had all the necessary information to write the article, and by 7:00 p.m., I had met my deadline and was receiving my second story assignment. I was ecstatic when my editor told me the article was very well-written, something I don’t think he expected from any Tech student. I wanted to continue producing quality articles, so I told myself I wouldn’t procrastinate in the future.
I did anyway.
That first story was four years ago. While some students may have been deterred by the stress of weekly deadlines, I found them exhilarating and knew this was something I wanted to continue doing during my time at Tech.
I later followed in my editor’s footsteps and took on several editorial positions. In working at the paper these four years, I have made contacts with different department heads, auxiliary staff members, the Dean of Students and SGA members. I’ve learned about the inner workings of various campus organizations, remained well informed on different campus issues and heard more sports statistics than I could have ever imagined. While my fellow classmates struggle to write 10 page essays, I’ve learned to work under the pressure of a hard deadline and turn papers out in a few hours.
And while I sit here writing my very last editorial for this paper, I can’t seem to come up with the words to describe how great my experience has been or how much I’ll miss causing a frenzy by writing what you should do the morning after a hookup. My apologies, administrators.
My first deadline as an editor was brutal and lasted well over the eight hours I was paid to do it in. I had eight pages to fill and only six stories to do it with. I soon learned that meant that I was screwed.
There were several other life lessons I learned at the Technique.
First, writers will sometimes decide they can’t turn in a story because they couldn’t get in touch with their contacts. What this really means is that they procrastinated but more importantly that you’re screwed. These writers don’t tend to come back.
Second, writers will sometimes turn in a story of appropriate word count length and you will discover that the article is severely lacking in neutrality and correct grammar. This also indicates that you are screwed.
Finally, you will sometimes incorrectly caption a photo or forget to properly credit someone’s work. The aforementioned people get very upset and once again, you are screwed.
I’ll leave it up to you to generate a consensus on these life lessons.
Over time though, Wednesday night deadlines became less of a job that ran into the early hours of the morning and more like a family gathering of some pretty interesting people. And though we lost members to graduation, we always welcomed newcomers into our family.
I am proud to be part of an organization as great as the Technique. I’m proud that a group of Tech students whose majors are unrelated to journalism can place well in competitions such as the Georgia College Press Association Better Newspaper Competition. I’m proud that we can claim our newspaper is better than schools like Emory.
As cliché as it sounds, the Technique has been left in capable hands. Whether you pick up the paper just for the slivers or for the occasionally out-of-this-world hilarious crime reports, you will always have the most accurate news in your hands.
My four years at Tech have been, in part, defined by my time at the newspaper and the people I’ve met. And I’ll miss every one of them.


Comments are closed.