April 25, 2020

Bidding my farewell: Editor-in-chief leaves the Cardinal

Cardinal Staff grabbing dinner at Taco Luchador for their Christmas celebration 2019.

By Maggie Vancampen — 

If you have ever met me or worked with me at the Cardinal, you know my favorite parting phrase is, “Make good choices.” I’ve gotten some teasing and pushback for it, but it is the best farewell I could ever think of.

When I took Comm 302 in the fall of 2017, Professor Katherine Taylor encouraged me to take Comm 463 with Professor Jenni Laidman. I made the choice and took the class in the spring of 2018. As the semester came to a close, Laidman emailed me asking if I wanted to apply for the copy-editor position at The Louisville Cardinal. She understood though if I was taking the online version of the class because I lived in another state.

I chose to apply.

Working third shift at UPS, Sunday morning’s were hard at first. I maybe got three hours sleep every Saturday night.

However, all great opportunities come with a sacrifice. I made the choice to forego sleep so I would have the opportunity to practice and improve my editing skills even if journalism isn’t the end goal.

Editing has always been my passion, even back in high school at Assumption High School. I loved doing peer-reviews on my classmates’ essays and leaving red marks all over them. Even to this day I still use red ink when editing.

True to form, my start with the Cardinal had to be different than past editors, so my exit has to be different.

With the COVID-19 pandemic happening I haven’t been able to meet with my amazing staff to put together a newspaper in over a month. We’ve been doing newsletters, and while that helps pay the bills and staff, it isn’t enough.

Coming out with newsletters doesn’t create memories with the staff, like quoting Vines and Tik Tok’s or listening to Lana Del Rey’s latest album on repeat. Or helping host alumni events that solidified more friendships and connections within the Louisville area. Or becoming such good friends with my second Editor-in-Chief, Sam Combest, that I’m now going to be in her wedding.

Yes, I’m a little bitter that the end of my tenure at the Cardinal got interrupted, but I’m making the choice to not dwell on the negatives. I certainly didn’t have the normal route through the Cardinal, but I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

“Make good choices.” Are the choices I made conventionally good?

For me they are.

What might be good for me might not be good for someone else. It was a good choice to leave the business school, become a Communication and English double major, take Laidman’s editing class and accept the Editor-in-Chief position.

It is my wish to all I meet that they make the best choice for them and to do it confidently.

Go out and make good choices. Don’t dwell on the past. And do it with enough confidence that people’s heads will snap in your direction in awe.

Photo by Ralph Merkel // The Louisville Cardinal

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