Seniors of The Post share their favorite memories of being Posties

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Photo courtesy of Garry Gilbert

A photo from The Post’s end of the year office party. In this article, Seniors leaving The Post share their favorite memories from their time working on the newspaper.

The Oakland Post Staff

In light of this being our final issue of Volume 47, our seniors are here to share their favorite memories from their time at The Post.

Bridget Janis, Journalism Major & Graphic Design Minor, Managing Editor: I’ve worked at The Oakland Post for four years now. I have seen many people come and go throughout my time, and seen a lot of changes to the newspaper throughout the years. My favorite time at The Post was honestly during the pandemic last year. Michael Pearce was Editor-in-Chief and Emily Morris was the Managing Editor (I hope I made her proud), and I would go into the office every week with just us three, with literally a notes page open on my phone of things I had to talk to them about — things I would randomly think of and things going on in my life. They became such influential people in my life, I can’t imagine not meeting them. I am forever grateful that The Post brought us together. Also, I was so lucky to have Carolina Landeros by my side this year. She made coming into the office for production fun, and is the best designer I’ve ever met. All three of the people mentioned above are truly my best friends and I’m glad to be leaving college with them by my side.

Carolina Landeros, Graphic Design Major, Graphic Designer: While I only joined the Oakland Post this past school year, it has been one of my favorite experiences throughout my four years at Oakland. I thoroughly enjoyed working alongside Bridget Janis, the one and only Managing Editor (and my best friend) every week to design our fabulous center spreads. With The Post being my first design job, it was so cool to finally get to see my designs being published for others to see. I remember designing my first center and being so excited, that I brought home a copy to my friends and family. Ever since then, I bring them a copy every week and get to watch them be just as excited as me. The Oakland Post brought so many memories and friendships that I will forever be grateful for.

Grace Lovins, English and Journalism Major, Senior Reporter: I transferred to OU during the height of the pandemic and ultimately only had 1.5 in-person semesters. During the 2021 fall semester, I had the honor of joining The Oakland Post as a reporter and I can’t even begin to say how much working for The Post has helped me become engaged with OU.  The beginning was a little rough to be honest — I had to find offices and buildings I’d never heard of, contact organizations I didn’t know existed, I mean I really didn’t even know what GrizzOrgs was until my third week in. My favorite memories working for The Post have been the opportunities to meet so many new people, seeing what exciting things were happening on campus that I never would’ve known about, and working alongside such an encouraging group of people. I only wish I could’ve been a part of this group a little longer.

Jeff Thomas, Creative Writing (Poetry) Major, Editor-in-Chief: People make memories. You remember being with them and how they made you feel. I have been blessed this year to have received many beautiful memories of love, friendship, hard work and collaboration from my wonderful colleagues at The Post. COVID-19 was really hard on our little independent newspaper. We made do during the 2020-2021 school year, but being able to return to the office and be together in person was a big part of what made this year so special for our organization. Truly, I’m thankful for everyday that I got to work with this group. Here, I’ll keep a million small magical moments that occurred while we all worked together in our office private. While all the memories of this year will remain near and dear to my heart, there are a few that stand out. I will never forget the feeling of being on the picket lines during our coverage of the OU AAUP work stoppage, being able to film and document the picketer’s march through the heart of OU was incredible. I’ll never forget the afternoon that I had with our Photographer Ayman Ishimwe, covering OU’s Peace Day Concert. And of course I’ll never forget going to my first OU men’s basketball game, sitting at the press table with our awesome Sports Editor Matthew Scheidel while I took social media videos for our fabulous Marketing Director Tori Coker, and the score of the game being tied 69-69 with 4:20 left in the second half.

Lauren Reid, Public Relations & Strategic Communication Major, Content Editor: I started at The Post in January 2020, and remember always heading straight to the back of the room to sit with Maggie Willard for budget meetings. Back then, I never could have predicted how much I’d be pushed — both professionally and personally — the way I was at The Post. I think a lot of us feel that way — it’s been so cool to see everyone grow and work alongside one another for so long. I was consistently stepping outside of my comfort zone, learning how to speak up, reaching out to others for help and figuring out who I want to be, and how I want to be seen by others. If it weren’t for The Post, I certainly wouldn’t have felt connected to the campus community like I do today, and wouldn’t have met some of my closest friends. Although I won’t miss looking over 30 stories each week, I’ll certainly miss the people, especially since they tolerated my thirsting over Doc Hudson every Monday in the office.

Maggie Willard, Marketing Major, Photographer: I’ve been a photographer at The Oakland Post since the fall of 2019, and I’ve made so many memories here. I had the opportunity to attend so many events that I never would have gone to if it weren’t for the Post, which I’m so grateful for. My favorite memory from my time here was back in 2019, a few weeks after I started, I decided to take photos of a concert that was being held in the Habitat. This was completely out of my comfort zone at the time, but I ended up being so happy with how the photos turned out. These photos ended up being the cover for that issue, and I remember being so proud and showing all of my friends that I got my first newspaper cover. That feeling never got old, and every time I have gotten a cover since then I have always been so proud of myself.

Matthew Scheidel, Journalism Major, Sports Editor: My favorite memory during my time at The Oakland Post was just being able to be in the office with my colleagues again. I started as a sports reporter during the winter 2021 semester and there could only be a certain number of people in the office because of the pandemic. When we could finally be in the office again in the fall of that year, it finally felt like I was a part of this organization. No offense to the previous regime of The Post, they did all that they could given the circumstances. It was just so nice to actually meet the people that I worked with.

Reece Taylor, Creative Writing (Screenwriting) Major, Sports Reporter: One memory that will always stick with me is the day I showed up to a men’s basketball press conference completely disheveled. It was my first one, bought some popcorn, and was sitting in an upper row. It should also be noted that I was in a short-sleeved shirt in the middle of the winter with a jacket and beanie. I just looked like a fan. Went into the press conference and saw everyone in much better apparel than whatever I dragged from the bottom of the hamper, which is also now covered in popcorn. The press conference went great, but the lead up to everything was the exact opposite of what I expected.

Sarah Gudenau, Journalism Major, Features Editor: My favorite Post memory was the first event I ever covered, which was an outdoor opera. I was working as a Graphic Designer at the time, but contributed some stories too, as that’s what I really wanted to do. I was so nervous to attend an event and interview people there, (Covid really got me too comfortable with Zoom), but it was so exciting and so much fun! Ayman Ishimwe took some amazing photos, and the story was my first to be a center spread. Because I can’t just pick one, I’ve got to say, production days are also my favorite. I love being surrounded by such a hardworking team, and I’m forever grateful for the Post staff who have become not only coworkers, but also friends.