One Last Cup of Copy
I’m an English major; I love to read novels and then write papers on them. Call me a nerd, I have no shame. I discovered this love my sophomore year of high school in my honors English class with Ms. Brewer. I got a C our first paper on Jade Snow Wong’s “Fifth Chinese Daughter.” I was devastated, but Ms. Brewer, who had expected us to do poorly, gave us rewrites, and two rewrites later, I had an A. And for the rest of the year, I got A’s. But even though I love to write essays, I knew I didn’t want to become a writer in any capacity. I later realized, through editing my own papers and peer editing, I loved to edit.
So I’ve known since my first year of college that I wanted to be a copy editor. I would help my friends edit their papers, and it would be so satisfying to have them come back and tell me they got a higher grade because of my edits (whether my edits really helped or not, I’m not sure). There’s just something about helping people polish and refine their words that makes me really happy. To be able to help someone be better, I think is an amazing thing.
But despite loving to edit, I did not think once during my first two years at UC Irvine to check out the New University. Third year: I was on James S. Kim’s Facebook for a reason I don’t remember and saw that he worked as a copy editor for the New University. I’m sure my heart stopped for a moment as I thought to myself, “That exists?!” I immediately texted James, and next thing I knew, I was a fact-checking intern. After shadowing the copy team for a quarter, I knew I wanted the job the next year.
And it has been a year since.
Thanks to the New U, I’ve met so many incredible people that I would have never met if I hadn’t been Facebook-stalking James (just kidding!). I’ve never met a group of people so goofy, so nonsensical, so wacky yet so dedicated, so devoted and so in love with their work. Seeing how hard everyone works motivates me to be the best copy editor possible; it is my job to make sure everything looks perfect, and it would be absolutely unacceptable to allow a mistake through to print after everyone’s efforts.
I’ve never connected to this campus in any special way, but now I have the newsroom. I worked at Pippin Commons for almost three years, but I know when I come back to UCI, the newsroom will be my first stop. The newsroom has become a home to me in the sense that I go every Sunday to work, but to also be with my friends. In the newsroom, almost anything goes. I can say whatever I want, and whether I’m right or wrong, ignorant or not, I will not be judged. I will always get an honest reaction, and I love it — honesty is always the best policy. People always say there’s no such thing as a stupid question and it’s usually said out of courtesy rather than sincerity, but in the newsroom, it’s genuine. I can be myself, and that to me is priceless.
Not only do I have the newsroom, but I have all the wonderful friendships I’ve made throughout the past year. Whenever I have a problem, I know that someone will be there on Sunday to listen to and help me. And because we’re such a diverse group of people, I get multiple outlooks that allow me to better understand my own problems. To know you have a group of friends that will always be there for support is something very few people in this world have, and I cannot be thankful enough for that. When I go back to San Francisco, I know I still have a family in Irvine.
I’m infamous in the newsroom for mishearing what people say because I always have my earphones in, and out of context this will be entirely inappropriate and disturbing, but:
I really would love to explain and I don’t meant to be a tease, but some things are just meant to be sacred to the 2012-13 Ed Board.