If you had told me four years ago that college would have gone by this fast, I whole-heartedly wouldn’t have believed you. As graduation quickly approaches, there are so many emotions that come to mind; empowerment, anxiety, and excitement are a few of the heavy hitters. However, as I take the time to reflect on my time at Manhattan, I am more nostalgic than anything else.
Who I’ve Met: I have met some amazing people while at college. There are classmates that I see myself keeping in touch with even after we leave campus and friends that I can’t imagine the future without. I have also met professors that have most definitely shaped how I see the world around me. To this day I am astounded as to how much I have learned here and am grateful for all those who I have helped me on this journey.
What I’ve done: I have done so many crazy and wonderful things these past four years. New York City is never tired of being explored and constantly offers new experiences. I’ve shared a subway car with a Sex and the City actress and got the chance to attend a private screening of the latest Nicholas Sparks’ movie. But I’ve also taken the subway in the wrong direction more times than I can count and am confident that I couldn’t find anything in the city without relying on Google Maps. These experiences are ones that I wouldn’t trade for anything.
Why The Book Nook: I chose to start The Book Nook column two years ago because I believe that there is nothing better than sharing the love of reading. To lose yourself in a really great book is truly a magical experience and never gets old. I’ll miss getting the opportunity to share a new book with the Quad every two weeks and hope that someone else picks up the column once I’m gone!
Oh the Quad. Four years of being ignored via email by administrators, late nights scrambling to get things done, throwing shade at people who get in the way, crying, and most importantly jamming out to Hilary Duff while getting an issue put together.
The Quad will definitely be one of the things I remember most about my experience at Manhattan College. It was a pleasure to serve as Production editor for almost three years, and really make my mark on the Quad (you see the title design on the front page…yes that was me **hair flip). Over the years it was probably one of the most challenging, stress causing and also rewarding things I have done. It gave me a voice and a venue to flex my creative digital design savvy. I will never forget being able to sit next to my main layout girls Kelly Burns and Natalie Heinitz and discuss our crazy weekends while simultaneously try to keep it together for the duration of Sunday.
Thank you so much for the wonderful friends I have made through this organization and for all the life lessons I have gained. I will probably never forget like maybe two obscure AP style rules, or that it is an immortal sin to distort a photo. I know all of you will miss me running into a meeting 10 minutes late, and all of the general nonsense that I brought every Sunday to production.
I know I wont be around to remind you all of this but always remember, laugh it off and it will seem so yesterday, to go back, back to the beginning, that there is a stranger in your eyes, that you lost your dignity in the Hollywood hills, you will never be Mr. James Dean, to chase the sun, and to breathe in, breathe out.
XOXO Luke Hartman is signing out.
When I was on vacation after my sophomore year of college I bought a pin that said the following: “I actually thrive on this atmosphere of crisis and hysteria.”
I’m not sure what compelled me to drop the two bucks on it at the time, but the more I think about it, the more that pin is the perfect way to sum up my time on the paper. The Quadrangle was crisis and hysteria and long nights and a boat-load of ridiculous fun all at the same time. But how much it taught me about life and what I’m capable of made it all so worthwhile.
The Quadrangle taught me to think on my feet and improvise. One time I was surprised with the chance to interview former NYPD commissioner Ray Kelly one-on-one and had about 30 seconds to figure out what the heck I was going to ask him. And it all somehow worked out. As a great Quadrangle editor once said, “that’s press.”
The Quadrangle taught me how to do my best work under pressure. No pressure, no diamonds. My favorite memory of this is when news had just broken during the men’s basketball team coaching drama of 2014. We had just yelled at our publisher to quite literally “stop the presses” so we could rewrite the front page story and were now sprinting in pouring rain up to our office to get it all done. An editor wrote the story in about 15 minutes as we reconfigured the paper’s layout to fit it, all while trying to beat major news networks to the punch. And for some reason, the editor-in-chief left a sophomore (read-me) in charge. It was the most intense few minutes I’ve had in college.
The Quadrangle introduced me to people I am so lucky to call friends and role models. There’s something to be said about the bonds you form with others while photoshopping administrators’ heads onto funny bodies at 3 a.m. under a light that has had a cockroach trapped in it for years. But more than that, the editors and writers I’ve had the pleasure of working with have been some of the hardest workers and the funniest, most encouraging people I’ve ever met.
To the Squadrangle, thank you for the endless laughs, the hysteria, the lessons, the support and the friendship.
In early 2012 I was first introduced to The Quadrangle when I got a letter in the mail explaining that I could submit my work for a Quadrangle writing scholarship. I interviewed for the scholarship with a room that consisted of Thom Gencarelli, then editor Jeanette Settembre and a few other faces that are now blurry to me. I was a nervous and eager kid who just wanted the chance to write. A few weeks later I was accepted and when I started school in the fall I began my Quadrangle writing career.
In high school I was used to being the one who was in charge but when I came to college I knew I was going to get knocked down a few pegs. I spent my entire first semester not really speaking up in meetings, I didn’t really talk to anyone besides the other freshmen that I knew, and I spent a majority of my time writing for Arts and Entertainment. I quickly found a comfort in writing for the section and soon enough I was writing an article a week for then editor Lynette Perez (she probably forgot all about me, but shoutout to her for allowing me to write all of those fluff articles every week!).
I owe finding my voice in with The Quadrangle to Joe Cusmano. He called me at the end of my first semester and asked if I wanted to be the Assistant Arts and Entertainment Editor. At that point, that position was like hitting the lottery. It was the push and reassurance I needed. I returned the following semester with more confidence. Over the next year I learned more about the paper and A&E. By the end of that year I was appointed Arts and Entertainment Editor, a position that I would go on to have for two years.
The Quadrangle has taught me so many lessons that I will not only carry throughout my career but in life. I’ve learned that when it comes to journalism all mistakes will be made in the public eye, even if you are not the one who made the mistake. I’ve learned how to work with people who may not always make your job the easiest. I’ve learned what it takes to be a leader. I’ve learned the hard way how to meet strict deadlines and how to develop ideas that will hopefully inspire others to take on a story.
The paper has given me some of my favorite memories of college and the people I have met through this experience are some of my favorite people I have ever come in contact with. Thank you to everyone who wrote for A&E during my two years as editor. Some weeks were harder to fill than others but the real MVPs pulled through and helped me. For that I thank you. Thank you to my news writing partner Luke Hartman. Everyone knows that news is just not our thing. We work better writing about fashion shows and what is currently streaming on Netflix. We were quite the hot mess sometimes but we always got it done!
Thank you to every single editor I have served under, especially Natalie Sullivan and Sean Sonnemann. The two of you during your years as editors put together an incredible paper and I was proud to be on your Eboard. This paper has grown leaps and bounds in the last four years and I can not wait to see where it continues to go. To current and future writers for this paper, continue to produce work that your freshman year self would be proud of you for and ALWAYS get at least three sources for your articles!
The first time I walked into a Quadrangle meeting was the fall of my freshman year. I did not know what exactly to expect. I felt a mixture of feelings that usually come with trying anything for the first time – curiosity, anxiety, excitement. My friend Michelle (who has since climbed the ranks to editorial positions) smiled and waved – she was the reason I knew where the meeting was and that it was even happening.
I sat through that meeting listening intently, realizing how much really goes on at our tiny campus in the Bronx. After the “read-through,” the editors pitched ideas, and the meeting ended with simple instructions – if you want to write something, talk to the editor of the section. I approached the then A&E editor without knowing exactly what to say. Would I have to provide a writing sample, convince her an engineer could write, tell her that I hadn’t even taken a journalism class in my life? In the three seconds before I opened my mouth, I had a million thoughts, but ended up simply asking if I could write about a photography exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art that I was planning on going to later that week. The response was even simpler than my question.
I still remember how eager I was for the next meeting. As soon as I sat down, I quickly flipped through the pages to see if my article was there. Until that moment, I had doubts that my article would actually find its way into the issue. As I looked at words I wrote immortalized in newsprint, I realized – all I need to be a writer is a will to write. Since freshman year, articles I have written or co-written have grazed the front and back of the issue and even the center color-spread (which is another thrill).
As I started to become comfortable with the idea of being a staff writer, I decided to start writing a column. What started as an interest in travel and foreign places, turned into an integral piece of my college experience. Writing “Our Jasper Nation,” not only opened my eyes to how big the world is, but interviewing international students and sharing their stories also showed me the common threads that exist between cultures. I talked, and laughed, with other students that I may not have ever had the chance to meet.
I am so happy that I walked into that meeting freshman year, and so thankful that I was welcomed into such a talented community of writers. Being a part of the Quadrangle for the past four years has kept my love of writing alive, and has been a creative outlet for me that I could not have been without. Although my formal education at Manhattan College, and the degree I will soon leave with, is Chemical Engineering, what I have learned from the Quadrangle is another piece of my education that I’ll take with me. I wish the best of luck to all the future writers of the Quadrangle. Even if you have doubts, I promise it is so worth it!