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The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

Thompson: My tenure at The Tangerine is something I will cherish for the rest of my life

Mickale Thompson reflects on his time as the 86th editor-in-chief of The Tangerine. Courtesy of The Tangerine photo file
Mickale Thompson reflects on his time as the 86th editor-in-chief of The Tangerine. Courtesy of The Tangerine photo file

Seven hours and twenty-two minutes. 

That’s how long it took to make my final issue for The Tangerine. However, the amount of time I’ve spent ensuring that the publication itself, not just its print editions, was the best it could be couldn’t be logged into the timesheet. For its editor, The Tangerine is an enigmatic task that unless you’ve experienced it firsthand you couldn’t understand the will and sheer determination it takes to get the job done. Yet somehow when it came time to piece it together and put it to bed biweekly on a Wednesday I couldn’t help but wonder: what would go wrong? 

I thought maybe I would have to drive back and make corrections after already submitting a final version. Or maybe I would have to be the DJ for the dance team while they held an entire practice session. In addition to the fact that maybe I would have to resend every single PDF due to always going back and changing something. Yes, all that happened. But my tenure at The Tangerine and time as its editor-in-chief is something I will cherish for the rest of my life — with no regrets. 

But I couldn’t have done it without help nor without the people who were there every step of the way. 

To Mary Our Work Mom: 

I can remember our first encounter four and a half years ago when I was a first-year student. Though my aspirations of becoming a Tangerine writer didn’t materialize then you still believed in me. And a year later you gave me a shot. With that, I say: thank you for your nurturing these past few years. 

Without you, I wouldn’t have had the confidence or the skill set to take on this great responsibility. Through your belief, I was able to stand on my own two feet and lead this publication. But I always knew you were there to provide grace and guidance any and every time I needed it. 

When we would talk about The Tangerine and journalism as a whole I always tried to pick your brain. In my classes, I learned about the profession but The Tangerine was truly my education, and you were my best teacher. Because of your kindness and selfless personality, I learned to write with care not just vigor. I grew from someone with potential into a professional. That’s because of you. And I know you will continue to do the same for others. 

To the 157th Editorial Board: 

The goal was to set the bar high and work at standard. We did that. Throughout the semester we got better print-by-print and worked as a team to cover issues and topics in and outside the community. We even welcomed a new president. 

But what made this staff special wasn’t the nearly 100 pages of content it produced but its ability to adapt. It was a new experience for all of us. We all found ourselves in new positions that created different expectations but we kept finding ways to make the most of it. Without your efforts, none of it would have been possible.  

Therefore, Diana, thank you for working with me at the top. Selma, thank you for being an easy edit. Charlie, your enthusiasm for The Tangerine represents the best of us. Kayden, you always turned your articles in on time, thank you. Nick, you always kept working on getting better. Emma, you jumped right into the mix — no questions asked — and became an instant asset. Chakri, I know you will bring a different style and perspective to laying out the newspaper. Kayleigh, your images brought much color and shaprness to our newspaper. Luke, you always were ready to go. And last but certainly not least, to Micheal and Juan thank you for making sure each issue was always within reach. I wish all of you the best going forward. 

To the Campus Community: 

I want you to know that I didn’t hold back. I did everything I could to ensure that we reported the facts and left no stone unturned. I want you to know that I was relentless and fearless when it came to the craft and wasn’t afraid to ask the tough questions. I want you to know that I held people accountable and sparked change. I want you to know that I did my best to make sure that you — the community — were never left in the dark. I want you to know that the people who work at this publication take the job seriously and pride themselves on perfection — each and every time. 

Sure, we’re no different from any other newspaper. Over the years we’ve made our fair share of mistakes. But we never hide from them. Instead, we made sure to face and correct them head-on because you, the public, deserve nothing less than a quality newspaper with a leader that echoes core foundational values built on the principle and the fundamentals of credibility. 

But the job was never without pushback or disagreements. So while some may be reluctant to subscribe to The Tangerine — due to past interactions or news coverages — as a community we must preserve student journalism and show it full support because at the end of the day one of Utica University’s presidents said it best: 

“We must do this work, this is important work, it is important for the future of this university and for all of our students that we do this work, just because it creates some concern or some angst among the student, among a faculty member, it does not mean we can shy away and not do it. It’s too important.”

His name was Todd Pfannestiel.

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About the Contributor
Mickale Thompson, Editor-In-Chief
Class Year: Senior Dual Major: Communication and Media & Business Management Previous Position: Contributing Writer (2021), Staff Writer (2021), Special Assignments Reporter (2022), Features Editor (2023), News Editor (2023)

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