Era, in this instance, meaning 18 years. That is 6570 days of wondering what am I going to learn, why there are letters in math, who cares what the capitol of Oregon is and in the summers, what color will my new trapper be? All very important things to worry about, but now that school is over and I am an official Alumnus of Northwest Missouri State I don’t have emergency yoga breathing before a Communication Law test.
This is an opportunity for me to share all the great things that happened at Northwest before I left, in the midst of the chaotic last semester and reminiscing about my last time doing this or that.
First Jacquie Lamer, one of the best educators I have ever had, gave me one more chance to brag about the experience I had in Advanced Advertising and working with Mozingo Lake. She asked me to put together a small team representing both semesters of the course. We spent time building and practicing the presentation that would eventually be performed in front of a 300 member audience. We practiced the day of and all of sudden the Performing Arts Center stage seemed very bright but with only one error, me not introducing myself, our short pitch was a success at the Academic Recognition Ceremony. I was so happy to be able to represent the group of students in both classes and show the talent we possess and the work we created.
Somewhere in between studying on a Friday and lab hours on Sundays I managed to squeeze in my last student publications conference, MCMA in Joplin. I woke up bright and early to attend sessions and make a pit stop to Sonic with advisor Steve. Then the awards. We cleaned house. The Tower that I was Editor-in-Chief of won 18 total awards, including all eight first place categories. I also received the top award in Overall Theme Development, which equates to best overall yearbook. I could not have been a prouder Yerd in that moment. It was the end though; my 7 years of yearbooking and everything that went with it were wrapped up in those moments running up to the speaker collecting each award. But it was a good ending to a long journey. I also received first place for my work in the Missourian and honorable mention. My work on the Missourian ended during my last student pub banquet. I was given the honorary sports guy award for working with the sports team almost every deadline as the designer and I appreciated it. I had really come to like the dark side of student publications and looking back, joining newspaper was a good fit for me and something that I learned a lot from. Eight years of student pub all ended so quickly but it was/ is such a huge part of me. It is my clique, second home and my family.
The definition of bitter sweet was my last AdInk meeting/our End of the Year Extravaganza! I did not belong to a lot of organizations on campus besides student publications but I was committed to AdInk all four years. Becoming president this year was a complete surprise and I was determined to leave with a bang. This entailed having a game Erin C. and I made up, (charades and Pictionary = parades) LOTS of yummy food, including Jacquie bringing espresso for all of us to try, balloons and awards. The Big Deal Awards were created by me, after Jacquie and Lisa, our advisors made up pins for us that said “kind of a big deal.” I wanted to give everyone something to thank them for their hard work and show them that they each meant something to me. The young members even presented the seniors with balloons, we surprised Jacquie and Lisa with T-shirts that we were all wearing and I passed on the small silver crown (an idea I stole from AAF-KC Addy’s) to one of the most hard working girls I know, Haley. She is going to be a better president than me and with her VP Brittany, I know they are going to rule the mass comm world next year, not to mention the advertising industry one day. I am so excited to see what all the members I grew close to accomplish in the next years and the new heights they take our small little ad nerd group to.
I had the most amazing four years and summers at college. I made lasting relationships, I accomplished so many things I never could have dreamed of in high school and most importantly, I learned all because one door closed and this one opened.
I originally planned on going to the Art Institute in Minneapolis, but after that opportunity did not work out, on a last ditch effort the spring break of my senior year, my mom found Northwest and my dad brought me and I fell in love. I became a Bearcat without even knowing what it meant but I learned quickly the pride that comes with it, and as the saying goes, Once a Bearcat, Always a Bearcat.