FAREWELL: The Collegian says goodbye to graduating staffers

(Illustration by Julie Freijat | Collegian Media Group)

Last week, the Collegian honored its graduating seniors on social media. Usually, we would say farewell to them in our final newspaper of the semester, but because of the pandemic, that isn’t possible. Here is a list of our dedicated staffers who graduated from Kansas State this weekend.

Dené Dryden is graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in English creative writing with a minor in gender, women and sexuality studies. She got her start at the Collegian in January 2017 as a copy editor, and thank goodness for that, because if she hadn’t found journalism she might not have found her true calling. Through her four years, Dené has written nearly 100 stories for the Collegian and served as the copy chief, editor-in-chief and managing editor.

Outside of Kedzie 116, she was also involved with Mortar Board Senior Honorary, Wildcat 91.9 radio, Collegian Media Group Board of Directors, the Kansas Science Communication Initiative and more. She’s also a published poet and creative writer among her bylines in various other publications.

Upon graduation, Dené will stick around Manhattan and continue her work as the news anchor for Wildcat 91.9 while searching for a full-time role in news media. She and her fiancé (and former Collegian staff member) Kyle Hampel will get married someday after their plans were put on hold because of COVID-19.

Molly Hackett is graduating a year early with a Bachelor of Science in broadcast journalism and a minor in business. She started at the Collegian after entering into the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications in spring 2018. When she started, she was a news, feature and sports writer, but was quickly promoted to assistant sports editor and eventually sports editor. During her second year at K-State, she served on the Collegian Media Group Board of Directors. In fall 2019, Molly served as the managing editor while still leading the sports desk. During her last semester at K-State, she stepped down from her leadership positions to focus on a weekly broadcast at KKSU-TV where she served as a news reporter and a lead anchor.

“I am very grateful for my time at the Collegian and everything that I have learned along the way,” Molly said. “Being a member of this organization has allowed me to learn next to industry professionals, travel across the country and work with some very talented writers.”

After graduation, Molly will begin working in the Topeka Public School District as a communications specialist. In this role, she will work with the communications team in central office while running the district television station in hopes of leading the next generation of student journalists.

Monica Diaz is a first generation college student from Frisco, Texas. She’s graduating with a Bachelor of Arts degree in broadcast journalism and a minor in Spanish. Monica came to the Collegian as a freshman and started out as a staff writer. For the last two years, Monica has worked on the social media team. During that time, she’s worked with Collegian editorial staff to revamp the publication’s audience engagement and marketing strategies. With her help, the Collegian has been able to reach a wider audience and better connect with the student body.

“Working for the Collegian has been one of my collegiate highlights and has given me some great memories,” Monica said.

In addition to her work at the Collegian, she was a student researcher through the Developing Scholars Program, a member of Alpha Delta Pi sorority, an intern at KSNT News, a contributor for KKSU-TV and now a lead anchor on the weekly morning show MHK All Day.

After graduating, Monica will marry her college sweetheart Thomas. She will also be starting her dream job in Abilene, Texas at the KRBC News Station as its weekend anchor and a weekday multimedia journalist.

Nathan Enserro is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in journalism and mass communications with an emphasis in strategic communications and a minor in political science. He got involved with the Collegian early in his time at K-State, focusing mostly on sports coverage, but picked up a few assignments from the news desk from time to time. During his time on staff, he’s traveled to Lawrence; Stillwater, Oklahoma; Ames, Iowa and Atlanta.

He’s also been involved with his fraternity Delta Chi. This summer, he plans to intern with the Kansas City T-Bones.

In the fall, he will return to K-State for graduate school where he will work as a graduate teaching assistant. He will stay on staff at the Collegian to continue covering women’s basketball, golf, soccer, football and men’s basketball while he gets his master’s.

Olivia Rogers is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in political science and a minor in philosophy. She started writing for the Collegian as a freshman, writing for the news and feature desks. She became the community co-editor and spent her time at the newspaper editing and writing opinion pieces — her true love. During her last year at K-State, she led the community desk by herself.

In addition to working for the Collegian, she’s also served on the University Honors Program executive board, worked as the editor-in-chief of Live Ideas Undergraduate Journal and was a member of the College Republicans.

After graduation, Olivia will head to law school at the University of Notre Dame. She hopes to write a best-selling book, run a law firm and be the shepherd of her own flock of sheep.

Katelin Woods is graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in mass communications with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in theatre.

Katelin first got involved with the Collegian as a writer and photographer. Her junior year, she developed and led a new section of the Collegian as the first culture editor. During her final year at K-State, Katelin worked on the social media team as the audience engagement manager.

“I’m extremely thankful for the countless opportunities given to me by the Collegian, and the friends I’ve made along the way,” Katelin said.

In addition to working for the Collegian, she was involved with K-State Theatre productions.

After graduation, Katelin hopes to get a job working with a mental health nonprofit.

Abigail Compton is graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in studio art with a concentration in drawing. She got her start at the Collegian in August of 2018 as a photographer. From there, she went on to be the multimedia editor. Under her direction, the multimedia desk expanded its focus out of only photography into video and infographic storytelling. She’s taken her art skills to develop a plethora of story illustrations in mediums ranging from watercolor to animation. The expansion of the Collegian’s podcasting series has also occurred in her time as multimedia editor.

After graduation, Abigail plans to remain in the area while her husband completes his education. One day, she hopes to work on staff at National Geographic or an art magazine. If all else fails, she says she would be happy working in the communications office of a zoo.

Nathan King is graduating with a Bachelor of Science in mass communications with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in political science. He started at Collegian Media Group as a freshman on the yearbook staff. As a top seller of the Royal Purple, he quickly became a leader on the marketing team. During his senior year, he joined the advertising staff as the assistant manager.

“Working at the Collegian has been an absolute pleasure. Media creators are some of the most dynamic and amazing people to work with,” Nathan said. “This is where I met my lifelong friends and worked with them to develop my professional journalism skills.”

Nathan also served as a student senator for the College of Arts and Sciences. He was also a student ambassador to the Journalism Education Association.

After graduation, he will start working in Ellsworth, Kansas, as a community relations manager for Mosaic. In this role, he will be in charge of the yearly fundraising efforts and various community volunteer projects. He plans to move to Salina with his wife and their puppy Mavis over the summer.

Kaitlyn Moldrup grew up in Manhattan, and is graduating with a degree in organizational business management and a certificate in professional strategic selling.

Kaitlyn joined Collegian Media Group at the start of her senior year as the advertising manager. Throughout her time with the advertising team, she says she’s had the privilege of leading a great group of students to sell the CMG brand to local and national clients. Kaitlyn is thankful to the Collegian for giving her the opportunity to gain practical experience in her field of study while in college.

In addition to working for Collegian Media Group, Kaitlyn was also involved with the National Strategic Selling Institute within the College of Business. She was a member of the K-State Sales team and competed in five sales competitions around the United States.

After graduating, Kaitlyn will be working as a Sales and Customer Service Representative for StepNpull and will eventually relocate to Kansas City, Kansas, with her husband Joel when he graduates in December.

Angela Sawyer is graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and mass communications. Originally from Olathe, Angela completed an internship with the K-State Office of International Programs. In addition to working for the Collegian as a staff writer, she’s worked as a student life reporter for the Royal Purple and as a reporter for KKSU-TV.

Outside of student media, Angela was involved with the Black Student Union and the United Black Voices Choir.

“I have loved every minute working with the Collegian,” Angela said.

After graduation, Angela hopes to get a job in the mass communications industry either in journalism or as a communications specialist.

Thank you all for your commitment to student media. We are excited to see what your next chapters hold!