Elijah Poe, associate sports editor and football secondary reporter
Since my start with the Ball State Daily News last year, there have been a lot of firsts. First event covered, first game covered, first feature, first print story, first head cover.
There have been a lot of firsts I will not forget, and the same goes for my first game covered in a Southeastern Conference (SEC) environment.
Traveling down to Georgia with the Daily News Sports team was unforgettable. As a college football fan, I have been looking forward to making this trip for the whole year.
Walking around the stadium pregame and going onto the field, it is hard not to feel a sense of belonging while doing a job (that doesn’t feel like a job) that I love.
With 18 plus hours spent in the car total, I would drive 10 more just to spend another gameday in that atmosphere, with great colleagues.
The Daily News has given me a lot of firsts, but behind it all are donors who are supporting those firsts. Those first games, those first moments and those first experiences like no other. Without the donors, none of these first would be possible.
It is what makes college journalism so special, the opportunity to share these first-time experiences with others.
So as the weekend of storytelling wraps up, I am sure to remember the firsts, and ready to embrace more. Knowing that not only will the Daily News support me, but the great colleagues and friends that come with it also will.
Kate Farr, opinion editor and photographer
Being able to travel to Athens, Georgia, this weekend was an experience like no other.
This was my first big photography assignment as a photographer at Ball State University, and it was made possible by the amazing donors who are gracious enough to give the money that makes trips like this possible.
As a sophomore journalism major, as well as a second-year on staff at the Ball State Daily News, being able to go to events like this allows me to gain valuable experience, make memories with other members of the staff, and learn important skills for my future career.
It makes me excited and grateful that coming to Ball State University has given me the opportunity to photograph something as formidable, yet exhilarating, as a game at Sanford Stadium where the No. 1 ranked team played against my own university.
This weekend will go down as one of the greatest of my young life. Again, thank you donors for all you do and for giving us at the Daily News the ability to have these experiences.
Contact Kate Farr with comments at firstname.lastname@example.org
Mya Cataline, associate photo editor
The loud roar of boos from the Georgia fans as Ball State football comes onto the field. That was the moment I knew that I was in the big leagues.
Georgia’s fans were one of the loudest crowds I have ever heard. They brought a buzz of excitement that never settled until they started to leave in the fourth quarter. That is a buzz I wish to feel every time I take photos on the football field.
Going into my second weekend of travel, I knew this was a big one. Knowing how the Southeastern Conference (SEC) is on game days, I still underestimated how important football is to them.
It’s either you go all out or don’t show up at all and boy, did they go all out. From women dressing up in cowboy boots and sparkly outfits to some men in full suits; they don’t disappoint.
The biggest wake-up call was seeing the top team in the nation up close. As a five-foot-four woman who barely makes it to 120 lbs, I felt so small compared to the players who are over a foot taller and 100-plus pounds heavier than me.
Knowing my surroundings thoroughly was a giant thing to think about. Being on the same sidelines as them, as scary as it was, was also the most exciting thing.
This experience of the game and the travels with my co-travelers: sophomore reporter Zach Carter, sophomore associate sports editor Elijah Poe and sophomore opinion editor Kate Farr. It will be something I will never forget. It was a dream I wish never had to end.
Zach Carter, reporter
The past few days have been something that I dreamed of since I was a little kid. I always wanted to see a college football game that was packed and as loud as stadiums in the National Football League.
It was everything that I hoped for and more. It was a pleasure to work with my talented colleagues as we covered the Cardinals as they faced No.1 Georgia and brought some awesome stories to our readers back in Muncie. For my full opinion on the trip, check out my column.
The only reason we were able to do this was because of the Ball State Daily News and the donors behind it. I have now been on two of these trips, and I can say for certain that they have made me a better reporter and person.
I appreciate what this organization has done for me in my two years with it, and I can’t wait for other reporters to get chances like this in the future.
Contact Zach Carter with comments at email@example.com or on X @ZachCarter85.