I was granted the opportunity to be an Editor in Chief in a time where my physical and mental health were not at all thriving; The faith that Mr Scali and the previous team put in my ideas gave me the drive, motivation and inspiration to pull myself out of this. I find it remarkable the extent to which the Mary Word has been a safe place for me, fostered by the generosity and support of the team.
Throughout this past year, the Mary Word has been an outlet for creativity and fun challenge. Working with this team of incredible people has shown me the capabilities of collaboration and granted me the skills to take into university and life out of school. Meeting with the team, both privately on a Monday, and with everyone on a Wednesday, has been such an exciting venture and one that allowed me to experience the varied yet equally important perspectives of Loreto Normanhurst.
Thank you to the community, who have always received our experimental additions to the paper warmly. If you are debating joining the Mary Word, let me give you the strongest form of encouragement possible. Not only will the team next year bring their unique and amazing personas to the paper, but they will also foster your individuality and allow you to focus on what you want to focus on.
It has been an honour, extremely fun and rewarding working alongside the girls and Mr Scali on the Mary Word this past year. We have encountered many challenges along the way such as producing the paper online, creating unique themes and organising structured meetings but as a team, we have communicated and trusted each other throughout the whole journey and I am so proud of what we have achieved together. It has been amazing to be involved in creating a larger student voice in the school and experimenting with new ways of delivering messages such as podcasts and videos. I have above all loved working with Issy, Erin and Liv and being as creative and innovative as we possibly could to guide the Mary Word team with strong leadership and creating an open and engaging environment and community. I know the upcoming editors will do an amazing job to continue the paper and add their own flare to lead the group outstandingly.
After joining the paper in Year 10, I never imagined I would be a part of the team leading the paper come Year 12. It has been an amazing experience, getting to work with the amazing students at the paper and devising ideas, articles and themes in preparation for each issue. In the three years I have been involved with the Mary Word, I have been able to delve into prominent world issues, explore global crises, and unpack the day-to-day occurrences at our very own Loreto. My eyes have been opened to journalistic processes and all the work that goes into this paper behind the scenes. If I have learnt one thing from joining the Mary Word, it is to always put yourself forward for the opportunities available. Looking back with hindsight over my time at Loreto, I wish I had joined extra-curricular activities earlier, without fear of not knowing anyone or feeling out of place. This experience has taught me that you should grab those opportunities with both hands, to put aside those initial doubts and hesitations and go for it. You don’t want to get to the end of your time at school with regrets, so take on those opportunities and give them your best shot. I’ve had the best time working with friends at the Mary Word, and our 2.11 GBC meetings will certainly be missed.
It’s a little bit odd to be writing this reflection if I’m honest. I can still very much remember being 10 mins late to a Mary Word meeting and exhaustedly smiling from the back of the room while Mr Scali introduced me as the new design editor, cheeks red and hair looking like I’d just been through a tornado. I can still even remember our first meetings together while I tried to get the hang of both putting a colour palette, aesthetic, and banner design together, as well as how to design a website through Wix. I was a little nervous initially, as even though I knew Erin, Lessi and Issy from classes, we were from different friendship groups and social circles, so working with people I essentially knew nothing about was a challenge. However, over the year and a bit we’ve worked together, we’ve become a cohesive unit, and I think we work incredibly well.
Being the Design Editor has been such a rewarding experience. I’ve not only picked up new skills in terms of website design, artwork and even coding but being able to meet up once a week to work with genuinely passionate and creative people. There have been tears and stress, but it all feels worth it in the end.
Being in the Mary Word has been so much more than just an extracurricular to go on my university application; it’s a commitment and a great one at that. It’s awesome to put effort and work into a project outside of work and school and an extremely rewarding creative outlet.
So if you’re reading this and haven’t joined yet, and you have a passion for journalism or any creative expression, I’d implore you to join, there’s never too late; you don’t need to have been here since birth to be a valued member of this team. The Mary Word is a fulfilling experience I’ll never forget, and if I can find a student newspaper in my university, you can bet I’ll be there.