The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.

From the managing editor: Goodbye to my Northerner family

You made these four years something I will never forget.

May 13, 2019


Colin Johnson

Northerner Managing Editor Nicole Browning.

My freshman year of college wasn’t what I wanted it to be. Due to personal circumstances, I wanted to transfer. I talked to my professor, Dean Hume, about how unhappy I was, and he pushed me to join The Northerner.

What changed everything was Mackenzie Manley (former Editor-in-Chief and current forever friend). She is one of the best people I have ever met. Among many great things she’s done, she made a point to let me know that I was valued. Through her, I finally found my place at NKU. The Northerner allowed me to regain confidence in myself that I had lost.

I then found renewed excitement in journalism. I took the opportunity when President Geoffrey Mearns left NKU to report on it, and that opened even more opportunities for me.

My relationship with The Northerner continued to grow. I had many venting sessions and laughs with Matt Sexton and Mackenzie. I found a beautiful frenemy in our former Sports Editor, Chris Decker. I spent many hours talking about nothing of importance with our former Arts & Life Editor, Cole Grecco. The Northerner became my family.

After Fall 2017, I took a break and spent a semester abroad. I expected everything to be different upon my return, and it was. I felt timid returning to the newsroom in Fall 2018. Everything had changed. There are many things I would do over again as Managing Editor, but I can never regret the people that made this process worthwhile.

Sam—thank you for teaching me more about who I am than I realized I needed to learn. You are truly a remarkable reporter; your talent is unmatched. I look forward to seeing your successes. Josh Goad—you are just a goober and joy to have around. Thank you for always being a comic relief and giving me endless advice. Emerson—you are a beautiful, dazzling person and an amazing photographer. It has been a joy to watch you grow, and I know if you keep pushing your craft, you will kick butt. Sierra—I think you are such an accepting, loving person. You are truly a superhero. Thank you for talking me through existential crises. Colin—your sports photography is outstanding. I am going to miss our random, dumb conversations and teasing. Kate—you are so sweet, kind and warm. Your grace will drive you forward. Maria—I don’t know how to express that you’re one of the best people. The way you love others is contagious. Laine—Svalbard aside, I love and appreciate the way we have the same dumb sense of humor and can meme for hours. Isabel—you are a remarkable woman with a bustling, exciting personality. I love how close we’ve grown over the year, and I can’t wait to see what’s to come for you. Abby and Corinne—you are special little nuggets and I’m so bummed I have to leave so soon after I met you. Noelle—I have watched you blossom since you joined The Northerner and I’m so glad I got time to know how nice and wonderful you are. Billy—even though I’ve known you for 10 minutes, I am so glad that I do. I love the linguistic madness we get into and you are such a genuine, loving presence. Kane—how can I say goodbye to you? You are just lit. You’re always there to listen and laugh and I am going to miss you so much. Josh Kelly—thank you for being the loving Leo I can talk to about anything. You are sunshine.

Before I start crying, Natalie, I don’t know how to express to you how much your friendship means to me. I know it will last a lifetime. Just like you said to me in that card, I love you so much that I truly cannot imagine my life without you. So thank you to my fellow blonde, greasy-haired, N-named sister.

And to the one who has been here through it all: Michele, thank you for always being there. Your warmth, heart and dedication to your students is what makes this program so special. Thank you for being the “Newspaper Mom” I never knew I needed. And a special thanks to Abby Anstead for being the first one to push me toward this amazing, crazy organization.

I will always love writing and you all helped remind me of that, but you also made these four years something I will never forget.

I made it, guys! The Northerner will have a piece of my heart for the rest of my life.


Peace & Love,


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