Two years ago, I walked into The Guam Daily Post's office thinking, "Wow, I'm really about to write for a newspaper."

Now that my time here has come to a close, I'd like to take this opportunity to reflect on how much I've grown as a writer and as an individual through this program.

To be completely honest, I've always thought that I was a decent writer, but I never thought I was good enough to write for a newspaper. That's where the Post came in. They saw potential in the thoughts I had and the issues I wanted to bring to light.

The Scoop has taught me many important lessons, not only in my writing but in the way I go about life as well.

I've learned to pursue all angles of a story. But ultimately, I've learned to always have an empathetic ear to everyone I interviewed and encountered.

I'd also like to give a big shoutout to Tihu, Ms. Payne and Ms. Oya for always pushing me out of my comfort zone and writing about things that interested me and my fellow teens here on Guam.

A writer's voice

But one of the biggest takeaways I've had through this program has been the journey toward finding my voice as a writer.

Discovering my voice and style has highlighted my individuality as a person, and I owe The Scoop so much for teaching me that.

As I head off to college with my fellow senior writers, there are so many things I'm going to miss dearly and, honestly, this program is one of them.

The days I've spent with The Scoop – doing research, brainstorming ideas and just having fun trying new things that I can write about – kept me inspired as a writer.

I'd also like to give a shoutout to my fellow "Scoopsters." All of them have made me a better and more collaborative student, and I'm so excited to see where the program will take them next.

The times we spent in the conference room talking about school drama and controversial political topics, and a countless list of other things, are times I'm going to miss dearly.

From movie reviews, to mukbangs, to covering social events, The Scoop challenged me to do it all.

And again, I couldn't be more thankful for this program, our advisers and my fellow writers for making that happen.

Looking ahead

As I am headed to Marquette University this fall to pursue a degree in my pre-dental aspirations, I will bear all the lessons and experiences The Scoop has taught me.

With that said, it's been a fun-filled two years here at The Scoop. I honestly can't wait to see what the future of this program has in store for the many talented writers here on Guam.

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