Goodbye WTAMU

Matthew Watkins

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Matt Watkins. Photo by Frankie Sanchez.

Matt Watkins. Photo by Frankie Sanchez.

Back in Jan. 2011, I transferred from Alcorn State University here to West Texas A&M and it was the best thing that could have happened for me.

While at ASU, I became the sports editor of the Campus Chronicle newspaper as only a sophomore. However, completing my degree there wouldn’t have near the prestige as a mass communication degree from WT. Primarily because Alcorn is only accredited in the nursing department.

I’ve had the privilege and the blessing of working with some of the most amazing people during my time at WT, including both the students and professors. I owe a major thanks to Buff alumni Maria Molina and Evan Grice for being the first influences on getting me to write for The Prairie and advancing my journalistic writing skills. Maria taught me about AP Style and Evan taught me how to write a complete sports story.

I want to thank my next two editors, Krystina Martinez and Ashley Hendrick, for helping keep me consistent during each of their tenures as editor-in-chief. When you have great editors pushing the staff to do their best it produces a ton of great work. Now, working with Tyler Anderson as interim editor, it’s allowing me to finish honing my skills to begin writing professionally after graduation on Dec. 13.

Of course, I can’t leave out Dr. Butler Cain, a professor I’ve taken for several classes and my advisor for both classes and The Prairie. Dr. Cain has been a great influence on me personally, keeping me in-line when I want to stray away from working on achieving my goals. I couldn’t have asked for a better person to learn from during my college years.

There are several other instructors I also owe a debt of gratitude to as well. Mrs. Kim Bruce was the first person to teach me the Adobe Creative programs that I had absolutely no experience with when I walked into her desktop publishing class. Also, Mr. Randy Ray for teaching me the business side of the media industry in media management. Finally, Dr. Leigh Browning and Mr. Ryan Hazelwood for helping teach me the television side of the news industry.

There have been several friends I made in my time at WT that affected my life in many ways. I don’t have space to mention everyone, but thank you all for making my time in Canyon fun.

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Goodbye WTAMU