Editorial Notebook

The great allure of The Poly

Ads coordinator recollects first experiences with newspaper

At the end of my first semester as a freshman at RPI, having finished the football season as an outside linebacker, I started looking for something new, something to which I could dedicate a good chunk of my time. I began asking around to see what clubs and organizations my friends participated in, as well as skimming the array of emails I was receiving from the clubs that I had signed up for—a little thoughtlessly—at the club fair. I was led to The Polytechnic by one of my friends who had emphasized the vast diversity of The Poly and the many different parts that allow for the machine that is The Poly to run successfully. At the time, I did not know much about The Poly, most likely due to being a freshman, and it seemed like something that wouldn’t be of interest to me; after all, I hadn’t been much of a writer in high school (one of the reasons I initially chose RPI). After some persuasion on my friend’s part, I decided to attend a meeting. To my astonishment, everything she had said was completely factual.

The Poly is held together by a vast array of moving parts, which, fortunately for me, are not centralized around writing the paper. The extensive list of staff members runs from advertising team, of which I am currently a coordinator, to writers, and from photographers to editors. The most important, as any Poly staff member will tell you, are copy readers (a job which entails proofreading articles, usually on Tuesday nights). Having grown up watching my dad’s marketing career, I was lured to the advertising aspect. Upon my first business meeting, I was readily thrown into the mix of the advertising team.

A few weeks later, during Winter Break, I was given the assignment of selling out advertising space for our first issue of the new semester, because the advertising director was going to be out of touch visiting family. I failed horribly, having sold only a single ad during the entire break. Against what I had previously believed, people aren’t as inclined to buy ad space in a school paper as I had thought. Sadly, we weren’t able to print that week due to my lack of productivity. However, we were able to generate revenue the following week and get back on our weekly printing schedule.

One of the great parts of being on staff at The Poly is the ability to witness the beauty, struggle, and pandemonium that comes with creating a finished product Wednesday morning. The allure to the Tuesday night extravaganza may be in part due to the free pizza but also due to all of the fun that can be had amongst the chaos. Being a member of The Poly has become some of the most rewarding times that I have spent at RPI. After being here for a couple months, I feel that I have become fairly good at what I do and I enjoy it. But, what makes it truly special and worthwhile for me are the people who surround me. From the Ads Team to The Poly staff, every single member brings something new to the table. Working with this group of people has been some of the most fun I have ever had, and the decision to join The Poly has become one that I will never regret, yet.