I have loved writing ever since I was a little girl. I would spend hours a day writing and illustrating picture books on printer paper. When I learned how to use a computer, I would type up stories of my own.
When I got to high school, I knew it was time to start building up my resume for college applications. My best friend Erica and I decided to join our school newspaper and teamed up together to write our first article together on the 57th Annual Grammys.
As I grew more comfortable with the writing process, I began taking on bigger articles, and by the time my senior year had rolled around, I had several awards under my belt and earned the title of Editor in Chief. At that point, I was in the thick of the college admissions process and intended to study international business.
It wasn’t until I arrived at Monmouth University that studying journalism even crossed my mind. When my advisor at freshman orientation suggested it, I jumped on the opportunity to pursue something that I loved doing so much.
During my first semester, I tried to get involved in The Outlook. I was kindly invited into the office, but I felt like a small fish in a big pond. However, when I sat in Professor John Morano’s Intro to Journalism class in the spring of 2020, I knew it was time to start taking things more seriously.
Since that first day of Intro to Journalism, so much has changed. I started writing for The Outlook and grew my rapport as a student journalist. When I was given the opportunity to become Club and Greek editor, I didn’t think twice. To this day, I feel incredibly humbled to have had this role. I’ve been so fortunate to make connections with so many members of the Monmouth community because of this position, and for that, I am eternally grateful.
Mom: Thank you for being my rock, and teaching me everything that I know about life. I said it at high school graduation, and I will say it again. My diploma is just as much yours as it is mine. You’ve been the first person I tell my good news to, and the first person I’d call when I needed help or advice over the last three and a half years. While I am sad to be leaving Monmouth, I am excited that you and I will be roommates until I get my life together after graduation.
Dad and the gang: Thank you for passing down to me the “Hoffmann” sense of humor. College can be tough, but throughout all of the hard times, I chose to focus on the good and even managed to crack a few jokes in the meantime. I’d like to think I’ve acquired that trait from you guys, and of course, Grampy, who I wish was here to celebrate with us.
Caroline: My best friend through it all. It feels like just yesterday that we were in high school together fighting like cats and dogs and now you are my favorite companion. Even though you may not realize it, you’ve taught me so much over the last three and a half years. The way you go through life not caring what anyone else thinks, and always doing so with a smile on your face is an inspiration. I’m so lucky to have been blessed with such a free-spirited little sister.
Brian: You are one of the biggest blessings to come out of my time at Monmouth, and our story is one of my favorites to tell. You were there from the start: freshman orientation (red squad, best squad!), and we even sat next to each other in class months before we even formally met. Who knew we’d be here now, three years later?! You’ve been by my side through it all, and I am going to miss life in WLB with you. However, this isn’t the end. Our story is far from over, and I can’t wait to see what the future has in store!
My AOII Family: My girls! Each and every one of you has had an impact on me and has inspired me to be better and do better. Chess, Dianelys, Gab, and Alex: you guys are my family in every sense of the word and I am so blessed to know you guys. We are stuck together forever, and I can’t wait to visit all the time! Ladies of 111: Thank you for taking me under your wing and helping me make some awesome memories during my senior semester. One last ride at Johnny Macs? ALAM!
My Bagel Guys and Gals: I refuse to believe that I’m ever going to stop working here. I’m so glad that I got to become friends with such a great staff. Thank you for all of the laughs and of course, the good eats. I’ll be back for a PEC before you know it, I can promise you all that!
The Outlook Staff: What an incredible group of young journalists. I am so thankful for the time that I have spent working alongside such a talented group of writers. Thank you for showing me grace when I was still learning the ropes, and always being on my side when things didn’t quite go as planned. I’ll miss seeing your faces every Tuesday afternoon. I know you all have really amazing futures ahead of you and I look forward to cheering you all on!
Professor Morano: You are the real deal. I cannot thank you enough for the way that you have inspired and pushed me to seriously pursue journalism. You have taught me so much, and I know that wherever this field takes me, I will surely have your voice in the back of my head guiding me along the way. I am lucky to have been in your classroom throughout the last few years. Thank you.
Professor Novek: I wish it didn’t take me until my junior year to take one of your classes. Not only did I learn a great deal about being a good reporter from you, but your kindness and compassion have been an inspiration through challenging times. Thank you.
So, I think that’s a wrap on my time at Monmouth University. I am eternally grateful for the time I spent here, and the people I have met. I don’t think I’d be the person I am today if it weren’t for this University. In the wise words of Winnie the Pooh, “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard. ”