• Claire Shang

Letter from the Editor, May 2022

By Claire Shang


It’s May. Just when everyone feels they’ve gotten in the swing of things, suddenly everything is over. People are scattering; maybe you’re reading this on your way home. Maybe you’re moving into an apartment of your own for the summer. Maybe, like me, you have humanities professors who are generous with deadlines, so you have a few finals to go. Or you’re graduating, going into the world! Or, to get very specific, you’re one of the 19 graduating seniors of The Blue and White Magazine, in which case, stay for a minute—I owe you a thank you.


Writing and editing and illustrating is such a particular labor of love. It all just takes a lot of time—there’s no way around it. The upside is that this type of work is never done alone, and usually it doesn’t feel like work at all. Joining the magazine my first week of college, some of the first people I met at Columbia were staffers who are now seniors. I don’t think they could guess how significant those Monday nights on Zoom were for me. As they added up, I realized that this was why I had come to Columbia: people like this! Smart and funny and articulate, quietly but brilliantly talented, who had decided to commit to this shared project. Every article materializing like a small but certain miracle.


All this said, you should know to expect some senior-themed content this issue. Our staffers write about what it means to find spaces of your own on campus—be it the senior studios that Brooke McCormick details or the places our B&W seniors have chosen as emblematic of part of their college experience. We’re also proud to share some of our strongest reportage of the semester with you. In our print issue, thumb through features on weed legalization, the political scene on campus, the credentialization of the publishing industry, and a musing on the Uris Pool as a strange sanctuary. Online, you’ll find our writers considering antiracist books and the limits of reading, the resurgence in student climate activism, and the changing contours of Chelsea.


If you’re a member of this magazine’s audience, your readership is thank you enough for these seniors. But for me, I ought to spell things out. Sam Needleman, none of us would be here without you. (I certainly wouldn’t.) And thank you, thank you to Aeja, Brooke, Chloë, Cy, Daniel, Elizabeth, Grace (though we’re lucky to have you for one more semester), Hailey, Jace, Jaden, Lyla, Maya, Michael, Nicole, Rea, Rosaline, Sam Sacks, Sophie, and Willa. You’ve made this magazine a truly special place to be, and we will miss you very much.

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