Salutations populace of Dawson,
The Plant is a mysterious place. I, like many others before me, joined the Plant to take advantage of a double credit course. I had no high expectations. For me, this was going to be a class like all the others, but where I would get extra credits.
Was I mistaken in my expectations! Once you join the class, whether you’re into journalism or not, you will be sucked into the madness of what we call the Plant.
I’m not saying it’s like a cult, but…. Yes, you will work unbelievably long hours. Yes, you will cover all types of situations (some fascinating, some not) that you would never otherwise encounter in a million years. Yes, you will be forced to overcome whatever level of shyness you have to interview strangers (some very nice, some not so much). However, all the shenanigans that occur during the semester compensate for the long hours of hard work and anxiety in meeting the publishing deadline. As one of my last letters from the editor, I want to share an anecdote from our daily lives at the Plant, and to encourage you to consider a semester as a Plant reporter.
When I was Voices editor last semester, my co-editors and I would often get bored of working, or more honestly, we would look for ways to procrastinate. We invented competitions to amuse ourselves. One contest that really sticks in my mind is the “no laughing” contest. This contest was by far the most fun, but the hardest thing to do in my Dawson career – harder than any exam or term paper. The objective of the game was to make the other person laugh; if someone laughed they were out. With all the stupidities that go on in our office, it’s pretty hard not to laugh at the best of times. The last person standing was allowed to prank the losing players. Don’t forget, these types of events were all happening during times when we were supposed to be working. Oh! To be young and unmotivated! This competition was just one of the many great memories I will take with me from the Plant.
Joining the Plant was, in my eyes, the best decision I’ve taken in my Dawson career. You meet so many cool and weird people; you discover art galleries in Montreal; you get to experience our local sports and theatre; you listen to new music; and, let’s not forget about all the free swag…. Of course, for every great thing, there’s usually a downside. You will meet some liars and untrustworthy people, or just people you don’t get along with. It is a lot of work: the number of hours you spend writing articles is far greater than for the essays you will write for a typical English class. But, and I promise you this, once you’re in, you’ll never want to leave. Just look at me: after a semester as a reporter and a semester as an editor, I am now volunteering my time for no credit because I love it so much.
Join the Plant. You won’t regret it.
Stay classy Dawson…Word to your mothers!
Samuel Lavigne Schmidt