Farewell column: Ending my journey with these words, onto more

Gabrielle Troutman, Reporter

In spring 2020, I joined The Appalachian as a scared, new transfer student. I came in search of words and friendship spurred by a love of editing, books and Rory Gilmore. 

From the first day serving as Chief Copy Editor, I felt fulfilled in my immersion into words while being the resident AP style person — even if I wished daily that the Oxford Comma was acceptable. It was quite the ride from the first day. Then, we dusted off our newsroom and took on the not-so-easy-task of bringing back print operations. It was a joy to be on Ed Board with some of the coolest people I know before they went off to do amazing things. To Jade and the fellow CCEs and copy editors who come behind us: you are the unsung heroes, and The Appalachian wouldn’t function smoothly without each of you. Long live the stylebook. 

This year I’ve had the privilege of serving as Managing Editor to lead passionate, amazing editors who have taught me how to be a better listener, leader and person amid my first year as a graduate student. Thank you all for listening to my rants while discussing newsletter and print needs. The newsroom had all that we hoped it would with each of you there — laughter, excitement and passion for your respective areas. I am so proud of the work you all accomplished. 

Thank you to those that read my book selects in The Bookstop. Thank you to Allison, Aubrey and Cameron for keeping me steady this year. And thank you to my family and my friends. And most of all thank you to Grey and Titan. I love you dearly. Thank you for supporting me through the conversations I spaced out of due to a news event, a story needing edits or the freakouts I had about people not knowing the difference between news versus opinion.     

Though I won’t be fully graduated until the end of next semester, I’m excited to pass the helm. From nervous chatter at the start of each semester to deliriously eating pasta, watching “The Bachelor” as a crowd in a tiny New York hotel room, and midday tea times in the newsroom, I’ve found the community and confidence I was searching for when I stumbled into Plemmons 217 — now 235. I’ve certainly found the words I wanted to immerse myself in. And, I’ve developed a realistic, adult perspective on Rory Gilmore.