SAMANTHA LUND; Editor-in-Chief:

Looking back on this year, I feel like a mom at her first child’s high school graduation. After putting in so many hours, so many tears and falling in love with this amazing thing that I helped create, I have to say goodbye and it’s harder than I ever expected.

This year, Mast Media did some amazing things— with a new magazine, new app and more viewers and interactions than ever before —and I don’t see that slowing down anytime soon. Even one of our biggest failures, the Get Drunk Make Mistakes issue of Mast Magazine, ended up winning a Society of Professional Journalists Mark of Excellence Award. Not too shabby for an issue that caused everyone in the office to cry and pull their hair out.

I came to The Mast as a first-year who had a loud mouth, a lot to say and just wanted to write opinion pieces about things I cared about. Through the last four years, The Mast and now Mast Media were a constant in my life— pushing me to be better, challenging me each week and giving me room to grow. That’s one of the biggest hidden treasures on campus: A place for students to learn, grow, experiment and fail while being supported by not staff, but other students.

Our last issue is about looking forward. We’ve got some amazing seniors doing things that will no doubt make you jealous – they’re going off to run the world. We have some Lutes expanding their studies, traveling the globe and bringing communities together. With that, our university president reflects on the year he’s had and what’s to come. Looking forward is usually scary, it’s about stepping into the unknown and out of our protective Lute bubble where, as Jon Adams says in his profile, there is always someone to cares about you. But, with that unknown comes amazing adventures and endless possibilities and these pages illustrate only a couple of them.

Now as I move forward, leaving the organization that shaped me and the magazine I had the pleasure of creating to go off an be an adult— not too excited about that part —and even though it’s painful and sad, I know it’s in good hands. With that, I only have one last thing to say:

As always, I hope you enjoy reading this magazine half as much as I enjoyed working on it. This is just the beginning, now it’s up to you to read the stories, get inspired and shoot for the stars. You’re the key to making this magazine a success, let it move you. The ball is in your court now. ◼︎

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