“UGH, I can’t WAIT to get out of here!” is the usual response you would receive from a graduating senior at BSGE. The intense workloads and demanding deadlines are enough to make any rising college student groan. But there was always something tugging me back, sealing my lips and making me hesitate to cooly recite this many-said phrase. The Bacc Rag.
I remember sitting in room 304 as then editor-in-chief, Jolijt Tamanaha, leaned over the table in her beaten up cowboy boots and hair tied back to instruct a 7th grade Lydia to always include quotes. Six years later, I find myself mouthing these exact same rules to the incredible thirty-two person staff that meets in that very same room every Wednesday at 2:15 p.m.
Who would have known that the most rewarding part of being editor-in-chief of The Bacc Rag would be working with such an intelligent, comical, endearing, hard-working and caring group of people? As nerdy as it sounds, I’m going to truly miss Moshan and Justin’s witty banter, Murtaza and Elio’s cheerful attitude, Anokha and Daleelah’s animated series of questions, Annie’s sassy comments, Abdullah’s updates about giant squids, Emma’s ever-changing hair color, Hana and Samantha’s band-geekiness, Yue’s adorable quirkiness, Allen’s reassuring words, and so much more. And I will of course miss the time spent with Mr. Lakhaney and next year’s editor, Miss Maya Juman, who have given me endless support throughout the year, which I am so very thankful for.
The Bacc Rag was an experience for me to grow as a person through interaction with such capable young people, and it was a chance for me to realize my dream career field of journalism, which has helped me establish a position as contributing writer for the Queens Ledger/Brooklyn Star newspaper, and a promotion to Senior Producer of the Youth Channel at the Manhattan Neighborhood Network. It has allowed me to build a future.
But now as we wrap up in the present, the final issue of the 2014-15 school year, and the final issue for my time here, I cherish and cling to what most people at BSGE know me as: “the Bacc Rag girl,” and hope to carry this name with me to graduation and thereafter. Until next time, The Bacc Rag!
Lydia Mariko Stetson