I stood outside Krieger 205 in my dress and blazer, shifting my weight nervously. I had been waiting for over half an hour, chatting with the other News candidates and trying to guess what questions I would be asked in the interview. Most of all, I just wanted the stress and sleep deprivation these elections had been causing in me to be over.

The decision to run for News and Features Editor for next year had been very much spur-of-the-moment. Over the course of the year, my involvement with the News-Letter had been mostly low-key, and I didn’t think I was qualified to take on a leadership position. But the more I thought about it, the more I felt that this was something I really wanted to do. A week before the sign-up deadline, I put my name down without knowing exactly what I was getting myself into.

The next few weeks consisted of shadowing in the Gatehouse until 5 am to watch the paper get made, talking with the current chiefs and News editors, and pouring more effort than usual into my articles. What I was mostly stressed about was the group interview in front of the entire News-Letter staff that I would have to do the night of the election. I’m terrified of public speaking, and the thought of having to answer questions on the spot in front of dozens of people was even worse. I wasn’t having second thoughts, per se, but I was definitely scared of humiliating myself and failing at the thing I’d been working towards, technically, since I first started writing for the News-Letter.

Somehow, I made it through the interview. I stumbled over my words and had more than one momentary brain lapse, but I came out of it feeling pretty confident. The next step was waiting outside the room for however long it took the staff to deliberate and vote. It was probably only about fifteen minutes, but it felt like an eternity. I talked and joked with the other candidates, but on the inside my heart was pounding. As much as I’d told myself that it didn’t matter what happened, as long as I’d tried my best, I couldn’t deny that I really, really wanted to be editor.

When they came out and announced my name, along with the three other new editors, it felt almost surreal. In that moment, all my hard work had finally paid off; I’d proven to the world that I could succeed at something. All the stress and lack of sleep had been worth it.

I’d barely had a moment to relax when the old editors presented us with our first assignment: a breaking news article, due the next day at noon. We ended up staying up all night in Brody finishing it, although we only spent about half that time actually working. The rest was talking and laughing and getting to know each other. In the morning, we got breakfast at Carma’s and ate it in the Gatehouse.

I still have several more weeks of editor training ahead of me, but I couldn’t be more excited about what next year has in store. I know there will be times when I lose faith in myself, but during those moments I need only remember the night of the elections, and I have no doubt that my confidence will be restored.