Senior will miss journalism, even when it was virtual

Morgan Daniels

Morgan Daniels

Being a 2021 graduate, COVID disrupted many of my upperclassmen high school experiences.

The pandemic stole my junior year prom and softball season, took away nearly half of my high school soccer games, and made my senior year an absolute hectic mess.

Those were all extremely upsetting losses, but possibly one of the most disappointing situations Corona caused was making my final semester as a journalism student online.

Don’t get me wrong, journalism online is better than no journalism at all, but it still seemed a rather anticlimactic conclusion to the last four years of my life as a Rebellion writer.

But this isn’t a story about how much I hate Corona, rather it’s a piece about my time on The Rebellion.

My eighth grade year was the peak of my “nerd” phase. I won’t go into details to save me the embarrassment, but just know that, through lots of lame fanfictions, I fell in love with writing.

My main weakness with writing, however, was my inability to be concise. I would ramble endlessly and use complex words I didn’t understand in order to sound intelligent.

With the belief that journalism would fix my struggles, I signed up for the class and anxiously awaited the first day.

I learned quickly that news writing was nothing like the creative stories I wrote in middle school. I couldn’t write about flying dogs, describe powerful emotions, or create detailed scenery.

Instead, I had to follow specific formats and could only use the facts and statistics placed in front of me.

For the first time ever, writing didn’t come naturally to me.

When it came to pick story topics, I opted for an entertainment column about book to movie adaptations because it was as far away from news reporting as I could get.

At the time, reading and writing actual news stories were of little interest to me, and I still only viewed the class as an opportunity to make me a better writer.

I don’t remember much from my freshman year of journalism, but I must’ve enjoyed it enough to take the class again.

It wasn’t until my sophomore year, when I somehow got stuck with a front page story about bus driver shortages, that I really began to love the art of journalism.

When the newspapers finally printed, and I got to see my name on the front page, it felt like the equivalent of winning a championship soccer game.

The pride and respect I had for that paper, for my writing, and for The Rebellion, was unmatched. At that moment, I realized just how important writing and journalism had become to me.

The best part of my day became typing away at a computer in room 220 third block.

That class instilled in me a newfound confidence and passion, and it tacked on a better understanding of my future.

The best part of journalism, however, has nothing to do with writing, and everything to do with the people.

Freshman year journalism introduced me to various insightful friends and even a few inspirational upperclassmen.

Sophomore year brought me one of my best friends for the next three years and showed me a whole new group of people I would’ve never previously known.

Junior year gifted me with the Breakfast Club, which was what my class of five students dubbed ourselves.

Our daily FaceTimes and lively group chat was one of the few positives during the first weeks of quarantine.

Being in journalism during virtual instruction my senior year made it difficult to create special bonds like I had in the past, but Google Meets made some social interaction possible.

Despite this past year’s disappointment, I am extremely grateful for all the memories, laughs, and friendships I’ve experienced thanks to The Rebellion.

I’ll forever miss passionate Marvel conversations, making TikToks before the bell rings, and, of course, Melching’s infamous cookie cake.

(This is my sincerest apology to anyone who’s never gotten the opportunity to taste that amazing treat because it is life changing.)

None of these memories would be possible, however, without Lance Melching, aka Melchdog.

One of the kindest and most encouraging people I’ve ever met, Melching has been integral in my development as both a journalist and an individual.

His dedication to his students and to The Rebellion has allowed me to find a passion that I now intend to pursue in college.

As my time as a Boone student comes to an end, I can’t help but reflect on all the wonderful memories, many of which occurred in room 220.

Despite this year’s unconventional conclusion, I am still forever grateful for the life changing experience that journalism gifted me.