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December 5, 2013

Final words from the Editor-in-Chief

By Doug Vehovec

Is it the end of the semester already?!

It feels like just yesterday that I sat in the same spot I do now, staring out the same window juggling words around in my mind to re-introduce the Stater for a new academic year. The newsroom brimmed with excitement, and all of us were determined to put out the finest publication we could muster for the time we were charged with stewardship of the paper.

I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a fair share of groans and grousing along the way, and days we thought the end of our run couldn’t come fast enough. But those were far outweighed by moments of triumph and teamwork that made this sometimes-curmudgeon proud for the opportunity to helm the ship. And as our semester winds down, I’m pretty sure there’s at least a part of each of us that wishes we could go on together. That will miss our vigourous editorial discussions and late nights editing. A part that knows we just scratched the surface of all our potential.

As a student, I wouldn’t trade my time at the Stater for anything (and I can’t, because it’s a degree requirement), and I’m confident that the rest of the staff wouldn’t either. I’ve always done better by learning through doing, and it doesn’t get any more “doing” than this. A group of people gathered together around a conference table in late September, unsure of exactly what to expect. Some old guy with honest-to-goodness greys in his hair is made your editor and the team is released into the wild to create a newspaper.
If they only knew how neurotic their editor was, they’d probably have been more nervous than me.

Here now at the end, our last edition together, I am pleased to report that I am completely amazed. Everyone brought their talents to the table, and what we learned is frankly astounding to me. Not just about the ins-and-outs of putting a newspaper together. Collectively, we learned about our school, community, each other and ourselves. We honed our craft and consistently improved our quality, and I like to think elevated the Stater at least a little bit in terms of style and content. We made strides towards moving the paper forward technologically and reconnected with Cleveland’s professional community.

Most of all, we created memories that will help shape our futures and stay with us through our lives. Even despite – or perhaps because of – the occasional frustrating times, we learned how to be better writers and editors. Thrown together to create this thing with so many components, we learned how to be better organizers and teammates. With free rein in our metro market, we found stories to bring back to our CSU community, as well as keeping record of campus events and learned to be better reporters.

We learned by doing.

For the last edition of the Fall 2013 semester, I am happy to welcome the Stater’s guest editor-in-chief Travis Raymond. All semester, Travis has lent his talented voice to a consistent body of work and I’m anxious to see how his edition turns out. If I’m honest, I’m certain it will be terrific and something we can all be proud of. But I won’t feel that way until it’s put to bed and you’re reading this very letter. I’m the neurotic curmudgeon, remember?

All of us at the Cleveland Stater would like to say thank you to the CSU community for the chance to bring you your news. We hope you visit us on Facebook and Twitter to keep up with our work, and welcome a new editorial and reporting staff in the spring.

Best Regards,

Doug Vehovec
Cleveland Stater