As told by Lance Charles Sun (NYMP9), on behalf of himself and Shipnia Bytyqi (NYMP10)
So last night I had to give a speech on behalf of the Posse at Middlebury Blog in front of educators, donors and politicians. My job there was to convey the missions of the blog, give a reading from selected posts and reinforce the importance of the Posse Foundation program in higher education institutions. I would be lying if I said that I was anything but a wreck. As I approached the podium, clutching articles that I had printed out just minutes before, I realized that I had forgotten to actually go through all the articles among the chaos and pick out what I wanted to read. “Aww heck,” I said in my head. Here I was, a representative and co-editor no less, standing in front of a roomful of some of the most important people that could make or break the program with nothing to show. I started to sweat profusely under the spotlight, both metaphorically and physically. My heart raced. My throat dried up. The papers spilled on the floor in my nervousness. And then, I woke up. (This dream actually did happen by the way.)
Like many people, public speaking was never my forte but that is not the point of the story here today. Other than telling a story about a brilliantly close call that I had (which was never really that close to begin with, since it was only a dream), I actually wanted to bring something to the table today. As one of the chief co-editor for the Posse at Middlebury Blog, I often have to explain to people, both whom are familiar with Middlebury College and/or the Posse Foundation and those who are not, what the role or purpose of the Posse at Middlebury Blog is. So as I rubbed the sleep out of my eyes and sipped on my daily-morning strawberry milk in my Middlebury College pint glass, hovering over my laptop, I began to ponder just how much the Posse at Middlebury Blog has evolved since we first envisioned it.
When Shipnia and I first exchanged messages back in April of 2011 about the possibility of creating an online space for Middlebury Posse scholars and allies alike, we had many ambitious projects and goals in mind. Like most ambitions, the dreaming came easy; it was the execution that often brought us back to reality at the enormousness of our ambitions. The early months of the blog were rough for us both. It was more about learning how to run a blog and be an editor than actually pushing out contents. As we celebrated the six-months anniversary of the Posse at Middlebury Blog just last week (it was on Monday the 24th), we can’t help but feel the pride swell in our chests at everything the blog has become.
Over the course of six months, the Posse at Middlebury Blog has grown from a two-person effort into an impressive team of co-editors, regular writers and guest contributors. The blog receives over 1,424 visits a month with readers from the green mountains of Middlebury, Vermont, United States (of course) to London, England, the United Kingdom and El Rebbe, Al Karak, Jordan. (Complimentary Warm Fuzzy to you if you can figure out who they are!) As we storm into November and embark on the latter six-months of this journey, those of us at the Posse at Middlebury Blog would just like to thank you for taking on this wild and crazy ride with us. We have formed together, stormed together and normed together–and through it all, we’ve trusted the process. Here are some warm fuzzies to show how much we appreciate you.
Lance & Shipnia