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I am possibly the worst person at giving compliments

I am possibly the worst person at giving compliments. I always mean well but somehow it comes out sounding like those backward comments in-laws are known for.

Sometimes they just come out wrong. And in an effort to not insult people I think I may have forgotten to tell some people what a difference they have made in my journalistic career. And so to end my tenure on The Tech Talk I would like to thank those people.

• Mr. Hilburn — Years ago I feared you. Now I respect you. Thanks for every bit of advice. Seeing you pleased with our work made it all worth it. I hope we have made you proud.

• Ms. Hollis, Dr. Owens and Dr. Blick — You were always behind me, always willing to guide when I needed. You embraced my different ideas and taught me everything I know about journalism.

• Ms. Rita — You make the whole paper come together and if that wasn’t enough, you have been wonderful giving me advice with the paper or just letting me talk to you as a friend.

• Mrs. Flo — I used to think your job was to answer the phone saying “News Bureau/Journalism” but you are the glue that holds this place together. Thanks for taking care of all those details that are rarely acknowledged.

• Oh Lydia — Having you as associate editor was like have two extra arms. Monday nights laying out pages, Tuesdays and Wednesdays in Ms. Rita’s office and proofing the pages nights I will never forget.

• Branson — You know when I call, I probably need a picture, OK ALWAYS need a picture. You are one of the most dedicated members of our staff and I can never repay you for how much you have done for this paper.

• Editors — Possibly The Tech Talk’s finest team ever. Thanks for being willing to write stories when I sprung them on you last minute. I see how much work y’all put in and feel like a proud mom when I see how far you’ve come.

• Reporters — Thanks for letting me learn with you. I appreciate every time you sat down in my office, or told me the paper was looking good that week. Thanks for your respect. I know this paper is the best I have seen in a long time and I give y’all so much credit for that.

• Nikki DeOliviera — You gave me one of the biggest compliments I have ever received about my writing when you told me how much my nose column meant to you. You didn’t just say it was funny or good but that it affected you. You reminded me of the reasons why I chose this job in the first place.

• David Castaneda — After three years I finally got my first hate mail. Thanks for reminding me that not everyone is going to like my writing. There will always be critics and you have reminded me of that. You have definitely made me stronger.

• Tech Talk readers — Thank you for being a source for a story, sending in comments, picking up the paper or buying ads. Without y’all we wouldn’t get to do what we love.

• The Tech Talk — Most of all, thank you for showing me that my college years were not a waste. I sat in other classes writing my columns, proofing pages and brainstorming story ideas, all because I found my passion. It wasn’t science, history or education. It was working on the paper in the basement of Keeny Hall, Room 146.


Valerie Metrejean is a senior journalism major from Lafayette and serves as editor for The Tech Talk. E-mail comments to

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