A goodbye, cleverly disguised as an advice column

Hey Pawan, I’m a bit scared about next year any advice?

There’s a lot to this question and I’m far from the right guy to ask but, as always, I’ll try.


Oftentimes UBC feels like an investment fund, a property trust and a housing company wrapped up in a trench coat, pretending to be a university. It can feel like UBC isn’t for you.

That ain’t the case.

Underneath the bureaucracy and between the ‘Admin cares <3’ emails, there’s something worth enjoying. There are communities you never thought could exist and might never pop up again outside of the few years you’re here — it’s just a matter of getting to them.

COVID-19 has bodied just about everyone. Every group on campus needs new blood and some reinvigoration, and that’s your job for next year. Don’t let folks forget what it’s like to be present.

If you’re one of my fellow grads, the road ahead is, in a word, fucking terrifying. Revel in surviving these last 56 weeks, take a breath, grit your teeth and give it all you got — that piece of parchment Ono signs means exactly what you make of it.

If you’re a Ubyssey-er wondering where things go from here, remember that you’ve got 102 years backing you and plenty ahead. When you feel like you’ve doomed the paper or aren’t living up to some lionized legacy, remember that every one of the alumni you’ve heard about failed hard in their time at the paper. I was a timid, slow-moving coordinating editor, but even that wariness didn't stop me from making my share of mistakes that you’ll have to deal with.

That’s just the way of the road. We’re student journalists, and we’ll embody both of those words to the fullest.

Oh, and please — please — cut the jargon you’ve got in that article you’re writing. Journalism for journalists is a surefire way to keep yourself locked in an ivory newsroom.

This next year’s in flux and it’s all right to be scared. Just mind what you’re doing in response — it’s too easy to stick your head in the sand and ignore the tough stuff, like an ailing planet or systemic racism. With that degree you’re getting, though, it’ll be that much easier to fight those big battles, so keep your focus.

Ask any staff and they’ll verify that I’ve crammed as many sayings into my meetings and articles as possible, so it’s only fitting to end my time at The Ubyssey with a cliché that's kept me trucking all these years: nothing worth doing comes easy.

— Pawan