Opinion | Columns

Eighteen cameras later

When I crossed the threshold of 2875 Broadway for the first time, I had my entire life planned out. I was going to be a reporter, damnit—a feisty cross between Nellie Bly and Christiane Amanpour, specifically—exposing social injustice and political scandal at every turn.

But my decade-old aspirations were abandoned within a matter of weeks, when Columbian controversy du jour John Ashcroft made a campus appearance. The then-photo editor shoved one of the office’s battered Canon Rebels into my hands and sent me packing, telling me to check the camera back in sometime that weekend.

I kept that Rebel for more than a year. With it, I learned more than I could have imagined about this city, its people, and why photography—not writing—should be my lifelong passion. And for that gift, dear Spectator, I owe you everything. Since graduating in December I’ve spent this past semester wandering New York with my camera (as of Monday, I’ve officially been to the end of every subway line on assignment), and I couldn’t imagine a more blissful existence.

This is not to neglect those countless nights spent on the news desk, laboring over Oxford commas and the one—not two!—spaces after every period, or the hours dedicated to fine-tuning levels and curves in the production office. For the people who made those evenings some of the best-spent all-nighters of college, I failed my Principles of Econ midterm in your honor. For those of you who remain—A.R., T.G., and J.S.—I’m immensely proud of everything you’ve already accomplished.

The author is a Columbia College senior majoring in architecture. She was an associate news editor and an associate photo editor for the 130th Managing Board and the Managing Editor of The Eye for the 131st Managing Board.

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