From Reader to Staff: My Fordham Ram Journey

From+Reader+to+Staff%3A+My+Fordham+Ram+Journey

Collette Campbell, Digital Producer

Let it be known that I knew almost nothing about The Fordham Ram when I applied during my junior year. The only thing I knew was that it was a newspaper distributed on campus that I read from time to time. I applied to be an editor, which I laugh about now considering I had no previous involvement with the paper in the first place. Nonetheless, I sent in my application on the last day that they were open and I interviewed with some seniors from Volume 102. They asked me, “So why are you joining The Fordham Ram now?”  

In truth, I’ve always been involved in activities at Fordham. It’s not like I was looking for something to involve myself in. In freshman year, I joined the Fordham Women’s Club Soccer team and have been on the team since. In 2019, I became an executive co-director for Fordham Dance Marathon, the Executive Vice-President of Residence Halls Association and a retreat leader for Campus Ministry. To say I was busy was an understatement. 

So, why now? I was forced to pause and think. My friend Dylan, who was (and still is) on staff, had encouraged me to join. We had long conversations about why I would love it, but I was still hesitant. Why involve myself in something that I don’t know anything about and where I would only know one person? Nonetheless, one thing I do know about Dylan is that he’s really good at reading people. At that moment, I trusted Dylan’s judgement on the matter and the confidence he had in me to be on staff. I looked at the camera and said, “I don’t know, but I think I have a good feeling about it. I’ve been so busy and since COVID kind of put a pause in my life, I’ve been interested in joining.” 

I decided at that moment that I would rather be honest than fake a response. I trusted my gut when I said I had a good feeling, even though I was pretty confident I wasn’t going to get a position. And it was true when I said I was interested. After Dylan hyped it up, the least I could do was apply. 

I got a text from Volume 102’s digital producer that said, “Saw you were interested in The Fordham Ram——would you be interested in being a digital producer?” I immediately realized I didn’t get the editor position, but I was still being considered for a staff position. At that moment, I could’ve said no or just completely given up. However, I trusted that good feeling once again and said, “Sure! That sounds fun.” 

Before I knew it, I was in a virtual meeting with a staff full of people I didn’t know, but who knew each other. Suddenly, I was nervous and questioning my decision of joining. I was a junior who quite literally just showed up. Slowly by surely, though, I learned the ropes of digital production and became more confident with each issue we put out.  

Flash forward to now: We’ve been producing in person again on Tuesday nights. I know I can walk in from my soccer practice and Megan will have two slices of pizza saved for me. I can sit next to Kat and laugh with her about random things. I can share my passion for true crime with Vanessa or annoy Alex to get the sports section to do a piece on club soccer. I also know I can rely on Ginny to do a water bottle refill at least once during the night. 

I owe it to the Volume 102 staff for considering me for a position, even when I didn’t consider myself for one. I owe it to Hunter and Katie for taking me in stride and teaching me everything I needed to know. They have been extremely patient while I asked a question a minute or asked someone to read every single sentence I wrote to make sure it was okay. I owe it to Dylan for reaching out in the first place encourage me to apply for staff. I owe it to myself, for trusting the good feeling I had and not giving up. I’m still busy, except The Fordham Ram has taken the space of commitments I am no longer a part of and I am so happy it has. 

Thank you to Volume 103 for welcoming me with open arms for my first and final year on The Fordham Ram. Y’all, B-52 and carefully curated music for production night have truly brought such a light to my life, even for such a short period of time. I am forever thankful to be on this staff.