Campus life editor bids farewell


Gabi Cummings

Campus Life Editor Anthony Witherow says goodbye to the Northern Iowan.

ANTHONY WITHEROW, Campus Life Editor

If you would have told me before I joined the Northern Iowan that my experience would be like this, I don’t think there is any way I would have believed you.

My time at the NI was anything but ordinary. I applied as a staff writer in January 2020 and began to cover as many events as possible, regardless of knowledge on the subject matter.

I found myself going out of my comfort zone on a weekly basis trying to get the best story possible. As someone hoping to apply writing to my career, I was determined not to fail at this; I wanted to use my voice and writing abilities to share stories with as many students as I could.

I have fought with self-esteem issues my entire life. No matter what I do, there is always a little voice in the back of my head telling me, “You’re not good enough to do this.” It is a constant battle that can cause opportunities to fall by the wayside.

I knew that if I continued to let that voice win, I would get nowhere. I instead tackled every opportunity the Northern Iowan gave me and finally felt as though I was getting closer to achieving my aspirations.

Then March 2020 saw a global pandemic send every student home, temporarily halting my work with the NI.

I was offered the position of campus life editor soon after, a position I had not previously thought about. Once again, there that voice was. I knew next to nothing about leading a team or the process that went behind editing a newspaper. It was an offer that left me with such trepidation that I told then Executive Editor Gabby Leitner, “Can I get a day or two to think about it?”

The nerves overcame me, but taking the position ended up being one of the best decisions I’ve made during my years at UNI. My apprehension quickly turned to excitement and joy every time I made my walk to the Maucker Union basement.

This is mainly due to the amazing editorial staff I have had the pleasure of sharing a newsroom with for the past eight months. Emma’le Maas, Elizabeth Kelsey, Gabi Cummings, Erin Kamp, Colin Horning and Karla DeBruin have all made my time at the NI special, and I cannot thank them enough for that and the amazing work they all do.

I could not have asked for a better team to spend my Sunday and Wednesday afternoons with. I know each one of them will be successful outside of college, and I will be rooting for them every step of the way.

I also want to thank our stellar writing staff, of which there are just too many to name. Unfortunately, I did not get to meet many of them in person, but reading their articles and seeing how much each their writing skills have evolved in such a small period of time has shown me how talented and determined each one of them is. My job, quite literally, would not have been possible without them.

My time at the NI was brief, but it was an experience I’ll always remember. I never could have predicted when I applied for a position on the writing staff that it would lead to an editorial spot only two months later. I will always be grateful that I was given this opportunity, and to say I’ll miss it is nothing short of an understatement.

If you’re like me and you find yourself constantly battling with your inner voice as it tells you, “You’re not good enough to do this,” respond with, “I am good enough. I can do this, and I will.” You will find yourself going much farther. I promise.