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Pencil Shavings | Tessa Blair

Photo credit: Bobby Jones

Last week, I got to fly to Dallas with three fellow editors to attend the Associated Collegiate Press’ 2017 Fall National College Media Convention. We attended panels, listened to inspirational keynote speakers, and had our newspaper critiqued by other universities’ media advisors.

Working in a field that has been tainted by the current political climate can be tough—but five days being surrounded by college journalists from across the country, equally as passionate, reinforced my sense of importance and appreciation for accurate, true journalism.

Learning from professionals in the field and having outside eyes critique our newspaper gave me a fresh perspective on the purpose and functions of the Sentry. This conference gave us abounding numbers of ideas on how to improve our paper to best serve our students. However, one lesson particularly resonated with me: Take risks and make mistakes.

“Try, fail, try again, fail better,” one of the speakers told us. “Failing proves you’re doing something right.” For a person terrified of making mistakes, who fixates on even the smallest of details, this message gave me a much-needed perspective shift. There isn’t room for improvement without failure.

As Albert Einstein said, “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” So moving into the final weeks of the semester, I’ll be keeping this in mind: for the paper, for myself, and for my schoolwork; and you should do the same.

If you’re ever feeling stressed about succeeding—in school or anything else—remember it is okay to mix things up, fail, and try again. They are your first steps to improvement.

And while you’re keeping this in mind as we head into the final weeks of the semester, the Sentry will be here, striving to provide CU Denver with the best weekly publication possible: trying, taking risks, and failing along the way.

Tessa Blair
Tessa Blair

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