A farewell from the Editor-in-Chief: Goodbye, readers, and thanks

By Nicole Ruse, Editor-in-Chief

Dear readers of The Easterner,


Firstly, I want to thank you for your readership and thoughtfulness as our newspaper started anew this year with a new staff and editor.

This school year has been hectic, to say the least. Through the ups and downs at The Easterner, the whole team persevered in unimaginable ways, and we have all gotten so close. I am so proud of all of them, especially those who have stayed from beginning to end. They made the team that much stronger, and our Issue 30 shows that.

Within the EWU community, I would like to give a special thanks to Terri King, Cathy Richter, Gayla Thomas, Bill Stimson, D.J. Jigre, Rachel Toor, Sheryl O’Keefe and Gary Gasseling. Your helping hand and never-ending support of The Easterner is greatly appreciated.

I learned a lot about myself, as a leader and as a student. Weekly newspapers are fast paced and difficult. I cannot tell you the number of times our team thought the newsroom was going to crash and burn into the ground. Yet, here we are, still afloat and closer than ever.

As we felt under pressure with constricting deadlines, computer crashes and printer mishaps, we all used humor to ease the stress of it all, and at the end of the day, all that mattered was the final newspaper and our readers.

I would like to honor and recognize editors I was so thankful to have collaborated with this school year:

Sports editor Sam Deal: Your leadership and teamwork made the sports section the strongest I’ve ever seen at The Easterner. Your perseverance showed within your team, and I know you will be a phenomenal opinion editor next year. Your passion for being a leader shows within everything you do. Also, thanks for letting me vent to you.

Online sports editor Fetlew Gebreziabher: You challenged me and discussed critical topics with me when it came to our paper, our values and what our mission was. You always answered my questions about sports and never let your opinion be ignored. You brought so much knowledge and differing viewpoints to the team, and in the end, it made the editors all stronger. It was such an honor working with you this year.

News editor Jasmine Kemp: You have grown so much here. You also challenged me and were so valuable to the team beyond just writing and reporting. Even when you felt overwhelmed, you were still in the newsroom working diligently. Now that I think about it, I still owe you a Stephen Colbert lifesize cutout.

Eagle Life editor Jaclyn Archer: Your high spirits and drive led to some of the best articles I’ve read in a long time. Your keen insight, knowledge and ability to see varying viewpoints astounded me, and as news editor next year, I can’t wait to see what you and your team will create. You also relit my love for theater again. Thank you.

Online editor Brian Patterson: You always made me laugh, even when I was in my office scrambling to get work done. The stories you told me, and the opinions we discussed, helped me get through the day when I felt like my mind was going at 100 miles a minute. Thank you for helping me decipher our crazy online analytics and going through our thousands of online comments. My head is hurting just thinking about it.

Managing editor Nathan Peters: You always made sure I was on top of my game. I knew since day one that I could rely on you to help me and the team as a whole. Even if some saw you as the bad cop and me as the good cop, we made it work quite well in our favor. Thank you for listening, laughing, crying, editing, arguing and being creative with me. As SigEp president and an ASEWU representative next year, I know you will change the face of EWU. I can’t wait to hear about all that you’re going to accomplish. Even when the designers put your face on Regina George and Gollum, I still took you seriously.

Opinion editor Zoe Colburn: The projects you have worked on so far have been great. You are a wonderful writer. The presence you bring to the newsroom makes us all feel better. Thank you for all your hard work, cat photos and comics.

To Eric Long: As chief copy editor this year, you really blossomed into a strong editor, and I know that as editor-in-chief next year, you have a lot to uphold in such a position. It might seem nerve-wracking, stressful, intimidating, overwhelming — my palms are sweating — but think of it this way: You’ve been, in a way, preparing for this job for years. You have all the tools and knowledge. It’s just a matter of asking yourself what you’re going to do with it all. Most importantly, thank you for being in the newsroom, sometimes past your work hours, to work by me and laugh with me. My biggest piece of advice: Choose your battles wisely and never let anyone destroy your passion. Okay, two pieces of advice.

I would like to thank Gary Graham for being the newspaper’s adviser last year. Even though you were only with us for two short quarters, you helped us immensely and gave us so much help and criticism. It really made a huge difference in how we saw our content and what we were creating and relating it back to our goals. I could never thank you enough for that.

In addition, I would like to recognize Jamie Neely, adviser of The Easterner this quarter. You have always been there to answer my late-night emails, give me beneficial advice and encourage me to always do the best I could, even if I felt overwhelmed. Thank you for being a listening ear as well.

I would like to recognize Laura Jones, EWU technical communication graduate, as well for working endless days last summer redesigning our newspaper’s brand and turning it into a beautiful, yet workable, piece of design. Thank you for bringing your passion to the newsroom.

Also, I would like to thank Cawich Will Bempus for being a strong presence in the newsroom when everything felt out of control. My hat’s off to you.

Lastly, thank you to my family for being so supportive and understanding if I missed a day to call home. Thank you to my dad for taking care of my cat, as well as letting me have a bed to crash in when I took Greyhound busses home to visit.