Graduation is Friday and as always, it’s a time for goodbyes. All good things must come to an end. While last year was just another week for our staff, this year we’re actually saying goodbye to some of our writers so I wanted to take some time and talk about them, since each one played an incredible role in shaping the paper that you are currently reading.
Sky Klaus (writer, 2014-2015)
First of all, shout out to Sky Klaus. Sky was part of the original run of The Mustang when the university brought the paper back in late 2014, and served as a writer, along with me, until the paper crashed and burned in early 2015. She is also a master photographer, possessing a natural gift for taking the most incredible photos. Seriously, I hope some of you checked out her senior art show. It was fantastic.
Sky is graduating with her Bachelors of Fine Arts and will be returning home to Carlsbad after graduation.
Casey Dickens (writer, 2015)
If you read ancient Greek myth, you’ll come across a concept called arete, which translates to “excellence.” All Greek heroes would strive for arete; excellence in battle, excellence in character, excellence in everything. Casey Dickens has achieved arete.
I don’t think the girl has ever gotten lower than an A- on any assignment throughout her time as an undergrad. She also tutors students and can always be found in the writing center helping students improve their essays. She is also the President of Sigma Tau Delta English Honors Society, taking the reigns at a time when the organization was at it’s most volatile. The two of us were also the only students invited to a mixer at the Provost’s house for the United States Poet Laureate, and she was recently inducted into the WNMU Student Hall of Fame, a much-deserved reward for all that she does. She was also instrumental in helping me relaunch The Mustang.
A good number of our early stories during the relaunch were written by Casey. While she only spent a few weeks helping us out, Casey did a fantastic job getting fresh content on the site and helping get the paper moving again after spending months stuck in oblivion. She’ll be back next semester, going for her Masters of Education and pursuing her dream of being a teacher.
Marissa Aguirre (writer, 2016-2017)
I never really shared this with her, but in a scenario where I was dis-enrolled or had been left to die out in the wilderness where I was mauled by a bear and had been forced to burn my throat in order to cauterize my wounds before crawling back to camp to take revenge on those who had wronged me (if it can happen to Leo, it can happen to anyone), Marissa was always the person I would want to succeed me. While this is by no means meant to insult anyone else who has written for the paper, Marissa’s attitude and her heart are her biggest strengths and believe me, she’d need both to run this paper.
Aside from writing for us, Marissa also coaches Tennis at Silver High School, and has also worked in the Writing Center, as a tutor and was a past President of the Sigma Tau Delta English Honors Society. Marissa brought a distinct style to the paper. While she would sometimes give her editor fits because she wouldn’t stick to associated press format, her articles had a certain confidence, warmth and charm to them that made them very fun and accessible to wider audiences.
Marissa is graduating with a Bachelors of English and will be taking a year off, heading home to Douglas, AZ. We’ll all miss her entertainment articles.
Claudie “C.P” Thompson III (writer, 2015-2017)
Finally, we’re saying goodbye to Claudie Thompson. I often tell people that when The Mustang was reborn in late 2015, it started with me, a MacBook and my girlfriend taking pictures. Claudie was the first person to take a leap of faith and join the relaunched paper and has been writing for us ever since. The amount of loyalty and dedication that Claudie Thompson has is incredible. In the two years that he’s written for us, he’s covered every football, basketball, volleyball and softball game regardless of whether they were home or away. This year I’ve tried to get him to change it up, leading him to write stories about cross country, golf and tennis. Now Claudie has become a master sports reporter. Others have taken notice of his skills too. This summer, he starts an internship with a larger newspaper, finally making it into the big time.
Claudie is exactly the type of success story that our University wants to have. He’s from Grant County, graduating from Silver High School and soon began taking classes at WNMU, taking advantage of the open enrollment policy. He began in developmental writing classes and eventually declared a major in English. Soon after he started writing for The Mustang, he became the first student to declare a minor in Communication. In 2017, he will be the first student to graduate with a Comm minor.
While The Mustang may have given Claudie a boost in his career, I can say with absolute certainty that The Mustang wouldn’t exist today without Claudie Thompson there to help build it.
So with that, we move on to our final announcement. Next semester will be my last serving as editor of The Mustang newspaper. It’s time for the students of WNMU to have a fresh voice. I will continue to guide the paper before stepping down in December 2017 and interviews will be held for my successor in the Fall semester. Unless of course I’ve been left to die out in the wilderness where I was mauled by a bear and have been forced to burn my throat to cauterize my wounds before crawling back to camp to take revenge on those who wronged me. Again, if it can happen to Leo, it can happen to anyone.
For now though, let’s celebrate our hard-working graduates and enjoy our summer. For the four students mentioned above, I love you all and thank you for all the work you’ve put in. I wish each one of you a long, happy and successful life. You all deserve it.
See you next month,