Winning the Pacemaker

It might sound cliche, but when we left for Austin I really just thought it was an honor to be named a finalist for a Pacemaker. I remember what the paper was like my freshman year, and the amount it’s changed between then and now is astonishing. We’ve come really far in a relatively short amount of time, and just to have the ACP recognize that by naming us a finalist was amazing. But when I entered the large room at the Hilton where the awards were being presented, I was overwhelmed with a feeling of intense nervousness. I wanted us to win all along, but I  guess it didn’t really hit me until then how much.

When I saw a copy of The Pendulum sitting on a table with several other college newspapers beneath a sign that read “Pacemaker finalists,” I felt a huge surge of pride. There it was, resting comfortably among other college publications whose names I recognized as previous award winners.

Sitting through the hour of other awards leading up to the announcement of the Pacemaker was excruciating. With each award that was announced, I grew more and more anxious. When they listed the finalists and a picture of The Pendulum was projected on the screen, those feelings of nerves and pride began to mix together. They began listing the winners, and with each name that was read my desire for The Pendulum to be named next grew greater and greater. And then it happened: “And a Pacemaker for The Pendulum, Elon University.”

I wanted to jump out of my chair. Andie leapt up to accept the award, visibly overwhelmed with emotion, and Alex and I hugged with excitement. When Andie passed me the award, tears welled up in my eyes. I’ve loved this paper since the day I started writing, but never have I been more proud to be a part of The Pendulum. I whipped out my cell phone, fingers trembling, and texted everyone on staff that I could.

I remember how excited I was back in September of my freshman year when as a lowly movie reviewer I was beyond thrilled to see my name in print. At that point I never dreamed I would be the Managing Editor of a Pacemaker Award-winning staff. Under the guidance of Olivia, Andie and Colin, The Pendulum has really transformed. To all of the staff members reading this, we could never have done this without you. Each and every one of you brings something great to this paper, and because of your hard work, we’re now considered one of the best college publications in the country. You should all be so proud of what you’ve achieved, and I’m proud to have been there with you every step of the way.

-Alexa Milan


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