Let me start by apologizing for not posting nearly as much as I told myself I would. Once a week turned into about once a month. I know these goodbye posts are probably all going to be the same, unless I’m awkwardly the only one that posts one. So I want to make mine more of a thank you note to the Oklahoman and everyone here because I have more gratitude for them than I think they realize. So here we go:
Whenever I started high school, I had no idea journalism was something I wanted to pursue. I’m not going to complain and say I went to a poor and underprivileged high school, but I will say that the year I started high school, budget cuts were happening everywhere and one of its first victims was the school newspaper. So I never had that. I never got to have a moment where I wrote for a school paper, had a byline and realized my life calling.
But I did have Newsroom 101. During my sophomore year of high school someone gave me an application for Newsroom 101 and I thought it would be an interesting opportunity, so I filled out the application and sent it in to The Oklahoman the day it was due.
Being in Newsroom 101 opened my eyes to a world I never knew I was missing out on. For three years, I gave up sleeping in on Saturday mornings to drive out to The Oklahoman and be a part of Newsroom 101 and I loved every minute of it. I would not trade those Saturday mornings for anything. The Oklahoman made me fall in love with journalism.
I could talk up The Oklahoman until my face turns blue. I could go on and on about how invaluable Newsroom 101 has been to me and so many others. Aside from giving me great references and great mentors (Carrie, I owe so much to you and am so grateful that you gave up your Saturdays for us. It meant a lot to me.)
The Oklahoman’s impact on my life doesn’t end there. So let’s fast forward two years.
This was my first internship. For whatever reason, Joe took a chance on me. I hope he isn’t regretting it, because it’s a little late at this point.
For the past two months, I have had a fantastic time being an intern here. I got to talk to people and do things I would have never imagined. The amount of investment The Oklahoman puts into their interns really blows me away. This has been an unforgettable summer, and I owe about a thousand “thank you’s” to just about everyone here. The Oklahoman has felt like a home. It has been so welcoming, supportive and fun.
I fell in love with journalism all over again this summer, and I have The Oklahoman to thank for that.
— Conner Rohwer
P.S. I am really going to miss most of the interns. You guys were the icing on the cake.