I’ve learned a lot of things in the past four years and many of them I learned while working at one of the best damned college papers in the state. So, rather than boring you with my philosophies on life and journalism, I’ve decided to share with you all at least a few of those things:

1) Parents of incoming freshmen are really, really nervous. Oh, and sex columns scare the crap out of them.
2) Albino raccoons are invading Isla Vista. When good ol’ Albert Raccoon bit the dust last year, we thought we had seen the last of El Blanco, but we were wrong. Dead wrong. Okay, not dead wrong. At any rate, I’m taking credit for naming the celebrated I.V. mascot since I dubbed him Albert in our April Fool’s issue many moons ago. Deal with it, Facebook.
3) Associated Students elections are fierce and scary. Sometimes when I log on GOLD at night, I can still hear the screaming…
4) The Daily Nexus is the best place to work on campus.

We’ve had quite the year, gang. The Daily Nexus got a front-page makeover, feature stories and a science page; our Web site got ads, videos and comment boards; UCTV made a documentary about us; we had some amazing news coverage – hello, does Hillary Clinton ring a bell? – and we took home several awards, including the honor of being named one of the top three college newspapers in the state. Oh yeah, and we stopped two subpoenas. How about them apples?

Nevertheless, I owe it to you, my amazing staff, who have suffered through some late nights, some intense stories, and above all else, my non sequiturs. I could not have done it without you. Additionally, I could not have done it without the awesome training of former editors Kaitlin Pike and Jason La.

So without further delay, here is a list of my immense thanks to you all:

Dianne Jobson: You have been everything I could have hoped for and more. You are the glue that holds the Nexus together. I know everyone in the office loves you, but I love you more. It’ll be weird not to work together anymore, but I’m glad that we’ll still be very close next year. I look forward to our next adventure.

Sabrina Ricci: Dammit, kid, get a watch! Oh, who am I kidding. I can’t stay mad at you. You’ve done some great work with the layout this year and, holy cow, you revived the science section! Kudos, my friend.

Lauren Crecelius: You are one of the most reliable people in the office. It’s been a relief to have you on the team. You are not only a fantastic editor, but a true friend.

Travis Miller and Evan Wagstaff: T-Mills, you’ll always be in my heart and on my desktop, and Evan, you have a beautiful voice. Both of you have really pulled through this year and I thank you kindly. Keep it up.

Aria Miran: I can’t believe you are hanging around I.V. for another year. I’m warning freshmen parents about you. Seriously, though, you have led your news desk to glory this year and we’ve had some awesome times together. I have no regrets.

Jessica Mullen and Mackenzie Weinger: You write some amazing and well-researched stories and it’s always fun to watch you get excited. I am so very proud of you two and I will miss you both. Give ’em hell.

Erin Currie: I thought we fired you! Ok, ok. You can keep your job. Erin, I think it’s fair to say that you are one of the nicest and most humble persons in this office. Please, don’t change!

Patty Bobek and C.K. Hickey : You always come into work with a smile on your faces and you’ve handled some difficult situations with the opinion page this past year. Patty, you’ve truly encouraged me to always do more and, C.K., I suspect you are Superman, but I guess I’ll never know … I put Kryptonite in your hookah.

Chris Hoffman and Alex Pavlovic: If there’s anything I’ll remember, it’s Chris’s mischievous grin and Alex’s sly-guy wit. You have rocked the world of sports this year and your columns kick ass. Call me when you make it to ESPN.

Mollie Vandor and Tyler Vickers: The woman who takes shit from no one and the nicest guy in the office. You two are truly a force to be reckoned with. You guys know what you want and you take it.

Erin Saldana and Rickey Mizuno: Where’s Erin? I can’t find Erin? Oh, there she is. As our pint-sized photographer you took some beautiful shots this year, and Rickey, you were always there for us when we needed you. You also make a damn fine drink. With that, I leave you with Erin’s favorite word: Chupacabra.

Simon Estrada and Rick Martinez: You are so damned talented. Every time I find a piece of art I like in the paper, it usually tends to be yours, and I like the way you push your artists to excel. I see great things in your future.

Valerie Tidwell, Melissa Davis, Noel Woodward, Rachel Lorencz, Virginia Yapp, and the rest of Copy: I regret that I do not have enough space to give thanks to each and every one of you. Please know that your willingness to endure some of those late nights has always left me in awe of you all.

Kelly O’Halloran and Kera Zacuto: You guys made On the Menu the best section it could possibly be. Never has this section looked so beautiful. I thank you very much for you hard work.

Nicki Arnold: You are too cool and I was lucky to have you by my side when I was opinion editor. I’m so glad you came back this year. You are the little sister I always wish I had.

Nikki Moore, Craig Calkins and Dana Olsen: You guys may have left your desks a little early, but you never left my mind. It’s been fun growing up with you at the Nexus and I hope to run into you again post-graduation.

Dan Gruen, Ryan Moll, Steve Placial: Video guys! You have helped make our vision a reality. You have formed the basis of what will likely become an integral part of the Web site. Thank you so much!

Barb MacLean and J.E. Anderson: You have been my guiding lights over the past four years and you have contributed to this paper far more than you can imagine. You two are the hardest-working people we have.

Jerry Roberts, Linda Meyer and Carol Dermer: I don’t know how you do it, but you do it with style. Thanks for balancing our books and selling those ads. I have a feeling the future looks very bright for the Nexus.

Last, but not least, David Ferry: You have a lot of potential, my friend. If you stay focused, you’ll more than likely outdo your predecessors as editor in chief, and I expect that you will. Thus, I leave you with the words that I was given upon taking the paper’s top spot: A year from now, this will all seem funny.

Adios, amigos!

–Nick Dürnhöfer
–Daily Nexus
–Editor in Chief 2007-2008