Max Samson/Editorial Artist

I would like to consider myself a man of principle. When I put forth my best effort, keenly aware I did an exceptional job, and it happens to not be good enough for someone else, I figure that person does not deserve it anyway. This was my mentality having been a deferred early-action candidate from Binghamton University in 2015. I thought to myself that if a place known to be notoriously gray with an overpopulation of people from Long Island did not want me the first time around, then I would not want it on the second go, either.

While I bitterly depreciated BU and all it had to offer for months, I had finally received an acceptance email the same year on a Friday night in March. Initially, I told my parents there was no way I would ever consider attending an institution that, in my eyes, rejected me. Like any good parents, they told me to put my ego aside and give Binghamton a chance. They helped me make arguably the best decision of my life.

Now this man of principle was on a mission. He wanted to prove to those who questioned his value at the Admissions Office that they erred in denying him an early acceptance. That man would go on to graduate summa cum laude, enroll in a near top-50 law school straight out of college and turn in a Binghamton career characterized by extensive participation in multiple on-campus organizations. It’s safe to say the Admissions Office got it wrong the first time.

In regard to that extracurricular involvement, there is not a more defining feature than my time as sports editor for Pipe Dream. With the help of ultimately three assistants, I was able to propel a section of four contributors to one with 14, extend sports coverage to 19 out of 21 Binghamton teams and institute a biweekly podcast that featured interviews and analysis. While my personal academic accolades were satisfying, the Sports section still stands as my proudest collegiate accomplishment.

If it were not for my parents, I would never have given BU another chance. This school will always have a special place in my heart, in large part due to the incredible individuals I met at or through Pipe Dream.

Evan, you’ve stuck it out with me as my right-hand man on staff since the first production junior year. We’ve advocated for office water coolers and fans, triple-boxed countless sports games and cried over both the Knicks and the Giants. I know this is by no means the end of our friendship, so I look forward to talking sports and receiving fantasy football advice for the rest of our lives.

Justin, Ed and Sam, from the first days all three of you joined the section, I knew Sports had a prosperous future. You have all been tremendously dedicated to Pipe Dream, and I cannot wait to witness where you take the section. Always make sure to keep a tally for every time Ed mentions the glorious city that is Buffalo, talks about legendary Binghamton student-athletes and drives his Zamboni to the office.

Grace, Ariel and Jill, you three taught me all about the Kardashians and Jenners, introduced me to ciabatta bread and brought me an unhealthy number of cookies. Thanks for being like my third, fourth and fifth sisters!

Editorial Board, glad I could always provide some comedic relief when we tried to pick from the hundreds of different ways the University messed something up or the incalculable number of things that are wrong with the school. Still wish I could have done editorial art at least once.

D.O.B., never have I met someone more dedicated and passionate about their work in my entire life. You have been a pleasure to work with for the past two years and you are by far the best person at their job in the University.

Pipe Dream, while it isn’t a secret that I questioned the importance of staff meetings, the almost 1,000 hours I spent in WB03 have undoubtedly contributed to my personal growth. I will always miss the countless nights spent at the Sports desk surrounded by some of my closest friends. I could live without the Nirchi’s and Hots, though.

Sam Ditchek is a senior majoring in history. He has been the sports editor since fall 2017.