Section: Opinion

Alex Felleson ’23: Chief Copy Editor bids farewell

I entered my position as chief copy editor prepared to enforce comma rules and AP style, but I ended up (and this is going to shock you) learning a lot about journalism. In addition to my official duty to ensure accuracy, clarity and consistent style, I leaned into the opportunity to edit articles for organization and content. This experience allowed me to eventually become confident enough to write some of my own articles. My only regret is waiting so long to start.

So, my advice for non-senior Kenyon students: Write for the Collegian! It’s a great opportunity to get a writing sample published, and it’s not competitive. You don’t need to have any experience in journalism or even be a particularly strong writer, as long as you’re willing to spend a lot of time editing your articles with our staff. I guarantee you’ll learn something every time you go through the writing and editing process.

As I prepare to graduate, I feel enormously grateful for my time on the Collegian and for the people who made each week worth it. Thank you to Molly Vogel ’00 for both the encouraging feedback to motivate us to write good hooks and articles and the constructive criticism so we were able to improve week to week — most of all, for giving me more things to nitpick when we’re trying to finalize articles at midnight.

Thank you to Amelia Carnell ’23 and Salvatore Macchione ’23 for indulging those nitpicks, for involving me in more than just the style-editing process and for everything else you did to keep this paper and its staff operating. Thank you, Reid Stautberg ’23, for getting the paper back in print to make it a visible staple of Kenyon’s campus once again. And thank you, Leah Beller ’26, for taking up my job — you’re going to do great.

Thank you to all the writers who gave us articles to publish, and to all the section editors for picking up the writing slack on top of your usual duties to make sure each issue was complete. Thank you to everyone who took the time to give interviews, especially in person ones, so we could fill those articles with authentic quotes.

Thank you to our readers, especially those who read the whole paper every week. Your readership makes all the painstaking edits and late nights worth it, and the fact that you find reading the paper worth your time is what makes me most proud to be on staff at the Collegian.

To those who don’t read the whole paper: I get it. Before I was hired to spend 20 hours over the course of two days each week reading every submitted article multiple times, I was a skimmer too. But once I started working for the Collegian, I realized I had been skimming incorrectly. So here’s my advice to you: Read the first two or three paragraphs of each article, then skim for quotes if you’re feeling it. If we’ve done our jobs right, that’s where the best information will be.

To the new staff: Good luck! You have an important job ahead of you. I’m glad for every year of the Collegian’s continued existence as a historical record of students’ opinions and events on campus. I look forward to reading about the selection of Kenyon’s next president, the computational studies program eventually getting off the ground and generative text AIs’ impacts on Kenyon’s curricula. Have fun, and please tell your writers how to report quotes before they write their first articles, for the sake of the copy team.


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