The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Texas A&M infielder Kaeden Kent (3) celebrates a home run during Texas A&M’s game against Tennessee at the NCAA Men’s College World Series finals at Charles Schwab Field in Omaha, Nebraska on Saturday, June 22, 2024. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
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Swan Song: The race before you

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Photo by Photo by Cameron Johnson
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Sometimes I wonder if I was ever supposed to be in the position I’m in right now. Texas A&M wasn’t my first choice, journalism wasn’t my first major, I told myself I’d never become an editor and I never applied to be the head sports editor. How did I end up in this position?

A&M was never on my radar growing up until my friend pestered me enough to take a visit during high school. Despite touring on a rainy, 40-degree day, I got sold by the business school’s business honors program. I excitedly went back home and proudly talked about my decision on A&M … as my second choice. But after a lot of deliberation and prayer, I settled for Aggieland in an effort to save money.

Despite this, I came to College Station with excitement and energy toward completing my business degree. I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do after college, but a business degree felt safe. I was in a good program too, so I was sure I would figure it out eventually. A couple of months later, though, it didn’t feel right. Nothing felt right. I didn’t think I belonged, but I didn’t know where to go — and frankly, that was scary to think about.

I’m not the only college student to think this, and I certainly won’t be the last, but it felt isolating. How do you tell your parents you’re in the wrong place? I knew I couldn’t confront them without a plan, so I pulled an all-nighter reading through every single major and minor A&M offered. I created a list and crossed them off one by one until I landed on one: journalism. I felt like sports journalism was my path, but now I had to tell everyone else.

After convincing everyone around me that my path made sense — or maybe I was really just convincing myself — I knew I needed to dive in head first if I was going to make this work. I got put in connection with The Battalion and swiftly applied. I had never written outside of an English class before, and my high school had no student newspaper, so I was starting from scratch. Beginning as a trial writer in February of 2020, I wrote my first story, then my second … and then the world shut down.

I went nearly half a year before writing again, unsure where my standing was with The Batt. I didn’t know anyone who worked there, and I didn’t know how to reach out. I thought I had lost out on my one opportunity. And then one day I got a message that said something like, “Hey, do you still want to write for us?” I did, and I expressed that, getting back onto the staff as a writer. I wanted to write football, that was my dream, but first I had to pay my dues and learn.

I spent my entire sophomore year covering an assortment of golf, tennis and swimming, all remotely as the world was on pause due to COVID-19. I didn’t interact with anyone I worked with because of the remote world we lived in, I basically just did my job and moved along with my life. Entering my junior year, the world seemed to slowly be going back to normal, and I finally got my first opportunity to cover football.

After the fall semester ended, I was asked to apply for an assistant editor position on the sports desk, which I did. I didn’t want to, but I knew it was a good opportunity. By the end of the spring semester, I was the only editor left, and I was basically thrust into the role. Now in December 2022, I’m saying goodbye to everything and am way more sentimental about it than I ever thought I would be.

But why am I saying all of this, telling my life story? It was a bumpy road that led me to the point I’m at as the head sports editor. I don’t know if I was supposed to be here, but I am here, and that’s got to mean something.

I have no idea where I’m going from here, or what the future has in store, but I know what it feels like to be in the wrong place. I know I’m not, and I know I’m going the right way. I’ve also learned that if you feel like you stumbled into something and feel like you accidentally got somewhere, maybe it’s where you were supposed to be. Sometimes you have to trust yourself and the path that is set before you. I never expected to be here, but I’m here, so I’ll continue to take all my challenges head-on and see where that takes me.

Keep running the race that is set before you with endurance — Hebrews 12:1

Jordan Epp is a journalism senior and head sports editor for The Battalion.

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