Patrick Murphy Northern Star
In less than a month, I will finish my senior year at NIU, and with that, my last days at the Northern Star. Since I started at NIU, I have been part of this news organization.
Four years ago, I started out as a nervous entertainment writer. Through my time at the Northern Star, I have since found my way and become the confident editor-in-chief I am today. I never envisioned that transformation for myself, not in a million years. I had dreams of running the paper, but those were just crazy dreams. Until suddenly, it wasn’t crazy. It was my reality.
I never envisioned spending my last year running a news organization in the midst of a pandemic either.
I have read a handful of exit columns in my time; I wondered how I would write mine, what I would say when the time came. Now, I find myself struggling to find the words to truly express how I feel. I pass the baton on to a very capable successor as I relieve myself of responsibilities and prepare to walk away from my home away from home.
The Star will always be my home. In those office walls, I had some of the happiest and most stressful moments of my life. I learned so many valuable lessons about journalism and, more importantly, myself.
The Northern Star has shaped me into who I am today and who I will become. I am forever grateful for the time I have spent here. I only hope I was able to give the Star even a fraction of what it has given to me.
Now onto the thank yous. I would not be writing this from my seat today if it was not for the amazing people the Star has brought into my life.
Shelley Hendricks, Northern Star adviser and my “work mom:” You have inspired me more than you’ll ever know. You shaped my career goals by giving me so many valuable professional and personal tools. Because of your guidance, I know what I want to do someday. You inspired me to advise students in journalism and help them in the ways you have helped me.
Maria Krull, Northern Star financial adviser and the glue that holds our office together: You have been the all-knowing wonder woman of the Star. You have been there for me on some pretty bad days and helped me smile by offering a witty remark and a snack. It is because of you I know I should always say “Maria and I;” I will never forget that lesson. It is because of you that I will miss being called the “Supreme” and felt the confidence to fill that role. I miss seeing your smile every day. I wish we could have been in the office this year so I could have enjoyed it even more.
Sam Malone, former editor-in-chief and one of my best friends: Who would’ve thought when you interviewed me four years ago this is where we’d be? You have inspired me professionally for so long. I hope I was able to run the Star even half as well as you did. Thank you for the support, for late night phone calls, drinks and dyeing each other’s hair. I know our journey will not end here.
To all the other friends I have made along the way, you know who you are: Thank you, and I will miss you. To the other editors I spent late nights in the office with, writers I worked on stories with, even the ads team I haven’t seen all year, thank you.
This is not the end for me and the Star — only a “see you later.”