By Brooke Schultz
With sophomore Abby Wargo stepping up as editor-in-chief, The Elm welcomes its 2018-19 staff.
“I’m excited for the opportunity to serve as EIC as a junior. I’m looking forward to working with the new staff to make this paper the best it can be,” Wargo said.
Lori Wysong, junior, and Cassy Sottile, sophomore, will be taking over News section. Sottile joined The Elm staff as a freshman and has written for the News section since her first meeting.
“I wrote journalism in high school,” she said. “We had a student newsletter, that was always a really cool experience. I never wrote in a formal setting, so I wanted to try in a formal setting. When I got here, I thought, ‘This is absolutely where I want to be.’”
When Wysong transferred to Washington College, she said she thought working for the student newspaper would be a great way to get involved on campus.
“Working for The Elm reminded me of how much I love writing,” she said. “It’s fun to meet new people each week, to interview them and share their stories. I realized a few weeks ago that this is something that not only is this something I really enjoy doing, but it’s important work. During my time here so far, The Elm has brought a lot of very important stories to light that the campus might not have been informed of otherwise. I think The Elm has a great mission, and I wanted to be an even bigger part of that.”
Both Sottile and Wysong are interested in bringing more into what Wysong called “all-encompassing” section. They said they hope to address the larger community in which WC is apart—Chestertown and Kent County.
Katy Shenk, freshman, has similar ideas stepping into the Student Life section. She also wants to focus on legacy.
“I like writing for Student Life because it keeps me ‘in the know’ about what’s happening on campus, and it’s my goal as editor to help the student body feel the same way after reading The Elm,” she said. “The Elm has covered a number of fascinating and influential events throughout WC’s history, and I’d love to feature that more prominently in the Student Life section.”
Her desire to write for The Elmstems back to visiting campus as a prospective student.
“[I remember] reading an issue of The Elm, and thinking, ‘If I come here, I’m definitely going to write for this,’” she said.
Theodore Mattheiss, junior, had always been interested in journalism, but when he started writing for The Elmhis freshman year, he got “dumped into the sports section.” After that, he put it on the backburner for a little bit until he decided that he “didn’t want to leave without getting into something at the College and having an impact. The Elmwas part of it.”
Mattheiss will be stepping in as Opinion editor during the 2018-19 year. He was drawn to opinion this year because, “I’m a very opinionated person. I’ve got a big mouth. I was like, yeah, it seems like a good fit.”
Throughout this year, Mattheiss said that he’s been able to hone his journalism, learned a lot of about AP style, and how to present an idea in just 500 words.
“That’s kind of tough when you’re talking about complicated political issues, to hash that out in a way the reader will understand. A lot of the process was learning how to make my writing short but meaningful. I’m going to try to cultivate that in the other staff writers through the editor position,” he said.
He said that Rosie Alger, current Opinion editor, has done a great job and he hopes to just do more.
“I want a greater diversity of opinion to come into the section. I’m going to try to bring in new writers and expand our pool of resources,” he said. “Politics is definitely my thing. I don’t want the section to be just a political thing. I want to hear what people think about what’s happening, around the world and on campus.”
Erin Caine, junior, also wants to bring what’s happening in the world into her section, Lifestyle.
“I always wrote for Lifestyle,” she said. “I liked the freedom of it. It’s what interests you: culture, music, art. Mostly my interests are in music and film and stuff.”
Going into next year, she said that she doesn’t think big changes are in store. She wants to tap into what Dan Teano, current Lifestyle editor, accomplished and “do the same thing. You know what your writers are interested in and make up topics that will interest them,” she said.
“I’m just excited to work more intensively with this paper than you would be as a writer,” she said.
Sophie Grabiec, sophomore, will be returning as Sports editor next year. While Grabiec never intended on applying for an editorial position, she said it was “wonderful to get to know the staff and newspaper process.”
“I began as a sports writer, not really knowing what I was getting myself into. Then, all of a sudden, I was the editor for the Sports section,” she said. “I’ve learned that as a section editor you don’t just come to layout meetings on Monday nights to complete your job and go home. You make really awesome friends that you get to share stories and laughs with while producing something that we’re all very proud of. I’m returning so I can get more practice refining my section, learn AP, and, to be honest, it’s a fun time because of the people on staff.”
In addition to the section editors, Kenzie Brady, freshman, will be returning as Photo editor.
“I had fun getting to know the other editors,” she said about this year. “Being Photo editor also helped reinforce my ability to effectively edit pictures using Photoshop.”
Gabby Rente, sophomore, will be returning as a copy editor, along with new copy editors Mary Sprague, sophomore, and Sam Clark, junior.
Sprague will also be stepping in as assistant editor for The Collegian, the College’s student run literary journal, next year.
“I think that copyediting will help me like also get an eye for Collegian stuff, with line notes and smaller grammatical things. I’ll be around, so it’ll be good to be in the environment of the Pub House,” she said.
Clark joined for her love of words and interest in editing and publishing.
“I knew with this position I could gain that experience while also genuinely enjoying the work I would be doing,” she said.
Shannon Moran, junior, will be the Blog and Social Media editor next year.
“I’m so excited to work with The Elm to continue cultivating its online presence through the blog and social medias. It’s already proven to be such a fun and inviting environment. so I’m ready to really start working with this amazing team to continue making a great paper. I’m looking forward to a fun-filled year,” Moran said.
Alex Weiss, junior, will be taking over as Web editor next year.
“One of the main things was that as a rising senior was that I wasn’t afraid anymore. I never had the confidence to have more of a role with The Elm,” she said. ‘I really liked that its made by students and it’s for the student community. It really informs the student community more than the administration does sometimes, and it was something I wanted to be apart of.”
Ben Fizer, junior, will be returning to the position of Business Manager.
He said, “This a pretty fun job to do with fun people.”
In addition to the changes coming to The Elmstaff, Dan Divilio, editor of the Kent County News, will be stepping in as advisor to the paper next year.
“I look forward to working with the reporters, photographers, and editors at The Elm. I am excited about this opportunity to serve as their advisor and to pass on my experiences in the field to this next generation of journalists,” he said. “I want to thank the College for giving me this opportunity, especially Kate Moncrief and James Hall. Melissa McIntire has done such a great job at The Elm and I want to thank her for all her support. She leaves big shoes to fill.”