Senior Sendoff: Niloufar Shahbandi


Image by Keita Kobayashi for The UCSD Guardian

Niloufar Shahbandi, News Editor

I wish I could say I was joking when I said I decided to join The UCSD Guardian because of “Gilmore Girls.” It was the summer before my freshman year, and I was binge-watching my way through the daily commotion of Stars Hollow. I had almost four months to spare before school started, and I didn’t know what I wanted to study or what I wanted to do with my life. Then, when I saw Rory join the Yale Daily News, I knew, “this is what I want to do.” And with a little bit of research, I found The Guardian. And honestly, joining the newspaper was one of the best decisions I made during my college career.

I had always thought about becoming a journalist, but I had convinced myself that my writing wasn’t good enough, especially since I only started learning English at eight years old. And the C’s my AP U.S. History teacher gave me on my essays junior year of high school didn’t necessarily boost my confidence either. But I knew a student newspaper was something I could at least try out to see where it would go. I first joined as a copyreader; then, I got the courage to write for Opinion and News, eventually deciding that I should become a news staff writer. Fast forward three years later, and I’m the news editor. 

Being a part of The Guardian opened up so many doors for me. I’ve gotten research positions, my job at UC San Diego Magazine, and many more opportunities because of my involvement with the paper. It’s given me an excuse to talk to my professors and TAs to ask for interviews (even biology professors, though biology couldn’t be further away from my actual major). On top of that, writing articles always felt so much more fulfilling than doing my homework assignments anyways. I love interviewing sources and learning new things from them; I love writing and editing my articles, and I love knowing that our work helps inform others. 

Now, even the thought of leaving The Guardian ties a knot in my stomach. I’ve grown and learned so much over my time here at the paper, but I’m excited for all of the new students who will join The Guardian, not knowing the wonderful path that lies ahead of them. 

So, the next time you feel guilty about binge-watching a show, remember it could inspire you to change your life. Or something like that. 

Photo Courtesy of Keita Kobayashi