Our Mosaic family: Two weeks already?

Margaret Lin // Mosaic Staff Photographer
Mosaic Class of 2012 sits in the Fairmont.

By Secret Mosaic Blogger

Everybody is talking in past tense as if we’re leaving already.

I know, I know, tomorrow is Friday and we leave at 3. I know it’ll hit me right around the time when we leave, seeing everything packed up and knowing my parents are on the way.

I really hope I don’t cry when I leave, that’d be weird.

This will probably be the last blog I write, and I’d like to say, it was a great experience, one of the best so far.

When they told us we’d be like a family at the end of these two weeks, I didn’t believe it, not for a second.

But now that it’s coming to the end of the road, I truly feel like I made bonds wit

h various people, something I won’t easily forget.

The program itself was a success! Quite awkward at first, I’ve never been away from home and eaten bagels for two weeks straight.

It was a blast. Thanks to everyone that made this happen. Joe, keep up the good work, I’m pretty sure you work hard to keep this program afloat.

I’ll miss everyone dearly, I just want to say it now, I probably won’t say it later.

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Mosaic is a mosaic

Ashley Lugo // Mosaic Staff Photographer
Naib Mian, center, holding his iPhone, is surrounded by fellow Mosaic students as they laugh over a funny video and share good times.

By Naib Mian // Mosaic Staff Writer

Alas, our time at Mosaic has come to a close.

As I walk through Dwight Bentel Hall for the last few times, I try to consciously see everything that made my experience – the newsroom, the kitchen, the hallway with the cockroach, even the bathroom.

I arrived not knowing what to expect about the real world of journalism. I now leave not knowing what to expect about the world outside of journalism.

This experience was a mosaic of a variety of writing, food, and people.

Throughout my time here, I experimented with a variety of writing as well as eating. I wrote three news stories on student involvement in the election, technology in education, and the local effects of the Supreme Court health care decision, an opinions column on patriotism, and a profile on a homeless flutist. On the food side of things, I tried Ethiopian, Jamaican, and a variety of other types of food.

But while an excellent journalistic education was a memorable aspect of Mosaic, I was most struck by the people. My fellow Mosaic writers and photographers are amazing. Diverse in every possible way, each one brought a unique, new perspective or skill. I want to thank them for being the experience. It was an honor to live with such an amazing group of people for almost two weeks, 24 hours a day. I cannot wait to see how amazing these students will grow to be in their careers.

The editors have been an outstanding part of Mosaic. I want to give a huge thank you and one of those really tight, squeezy hugs to Sharon. She persevered through my crazy writing and transformed my articles into great pieces of writing. Her devotion to improving the writing of student journalists is appreciated.

Elliot Almond, although not an editor this year, was an essential part of the experience. He helped us so much through various lessons in the morning and offered me amazing advice when I sent him an article of mine for editing.

I’d also like to thank Darlene, our dorm mom, who took the time to be there for us, tell us everything she could about life, and just engage in conversation. I really enjoyed late night TV, card playing, and gossiping with her.

Our Editorial Assistants were also amazing. Maggie, Audrey, and Jasna were absolutely amazing. They brought us food every morning just to watch it be inhaled by a group of hungry journalists. They drove us to god-forsaken places for interviews. They even toiled through finding Mosaic Alumni in order to survey them. Maggie drove me to all of my interviews, and while she may have been crazy in the car, those were some of the best times.

Lastly, Mosaic would not be Mosaic without our mascot, leader, inspiration, and support – Joe Rodriguez. Joe inspired all of us through his words of wisdom, stories, and way he lives his journalistic life. He taught me so much about the world of journalism and interviewing. He even pressed me to speak up, something I’m thankful for. Mosaic would be impossible without Joe.

I will miss every part of Mosaic, even Washburn Hall, as haunted as it may be. The newsroom will always have a place in my heart, and it pains me to leave my desk, which became my home. But perhaps the greatest place in my heart is reserved for all of the people who made this mosaic what it was.

Day 11- One more day

Ashley Lugo // Mosaic Staff Photographer
Walter Teng-Tran laughs when another student kicks his leg into the air during another late night in the common room.

By Olivia Lucas // Mosaic Staff Writer

Last week I was saying, “one more day until first draft deadline”. Yesterday, I was fretting, “One more day until print deadline.” Today I’m crying, “One more day until we leave.”

The last two weeks here have just been so incredible! They have been filled with emotion, learning, laughing, writing, fretting about deadlines, excitement, and—not to forget—a lot of eating. Shoutout to Andy, who is now in New Zealand, for taking everyone out to experiment with new foods, like Ethiopian and Jamaican food.

People here at Mosaic are so amazing– not only the students, but also the editors. My editor Sharon is the best! She has helped me develop and grow so much as a writer over the last 11 days. Thanks for taking the time to edit all my drafts (I know I had a lot). I also want to thank the editorial assistants, Magali, Audrey, and Jasna, for driving me and other campers all over San Jose to our interviews. As Elliott said, “This is the one time when I’ll have my own personal chauffer.” Speaking of Elliott, even though the first thing he told us was that he wasn’t really a part of Mosaic this year, he definitely helped make my experience at Mosaic the best! Thanks to Elliott, yesterday, I was able to interview Olympic silver medalist, Shawn Johnson, and the Olympic hopeful, Gabrielle Douglas. Without a doubt, one of the best experiences of my life! Thank You Elliott! Last but not least, none of this would have been possible without Joe Rodriguez. Thank for looking out for us over the last two weeks. I know you’re tough on us sometimes, but it’s only because you want us to be the best we can be and reach our full potential—and oh yeah, to speak up a little louder.

My time at Mosaic has just been so unbelievable and eye-opening. I am so glad I had the opportunity to come! Just because I felt like it, I made a little acrostic, reflecting the last 11 days.

Meeting new people.

Outstanding guest speakers.

Staying up late working on stories, chatting with friends, and playing cards.

Adventuring out of my comfort zone.

Improving my writing, interviewing and reporting skills.

Constantly experiencing what it feels like to be a real journalist!

Last days of MOSAIC

Margaret Lin // Mosaic Staff Photographer
The Mosaic Class of 2012 walks through downtown San Jose.

By Silvia Cardona-Tapia // Mosaic Staff Writer

The last days of mosaic have been GOING BY FAST and I can’t believe that tomorrow is the last day. I know I’m going to miss our Mosaic family. This Mosaic class of 2012 is by far the best class of Mosaic EVER! My roommates have shown that they will be there thick or thin, day or night. They will be there crying with you or laughing with you, showing their emotions to you. Tears run down my face knowing that I might not see them a year from now. Joe, our dorm dad and Mosaic director, taught me to be myself, be loud, and ask a lot of questions. I came with an open mind and curiosity about being a reporter, but now I really do think this is the job for me. Thank you Mosaic Class of 2012 for being another family to me. SEE YA NEXT YEAR FOR THE REUNION. SIGNING OFF SILVIA.

A Day in the Life

Ashley Lugo // Mosaic Staff Photographer
Lexy and Tanya, center, make faces at the camera during one of the late nights in the common room.

By Lexy A. Brown and Tanya Raja // Mosaic Staff Writers

Before coming to the Mosaic, all of the participants are given an “official” Mosaic schedule. But it doesn’t begin to describe what really happens when you’re a member of Mosaic. Here is the unabridged truth.
7:30am- Turn off your alarm in your sleep.
7:35am- Turn off the second alarm you set, knowing the first one wouldn’t be effective.
8:45am- Be woken up by your roommate as she leaves for the newsroom. Quickly throw on clothes and hope that they’re weather appropriate. Provided the time, run to the bathroom to brush your teeth.
8:59am- Slide into the newsroom and pile your plate with breakfast, knowing that it’s probably the only free food for the day.
9:30am- A lecture or journalism exercise over breakfast.
10:00am- “Write,” which usually means call anyone remotely related to your subject until somebody finally picks up. If you didn’t have an opportunity to brush your teeth or do any other piece of the typical morning routine, slip out to the dorm and do it now.
10:45am- Grab your first piece of licorice from the giant tub in the newsroom.
10:45:30am- Grab your second, third, and twentieth piece of licorice.
12:30pm- Run to La Victoria’s “La Vic’s” and grab some inexpensive grub to eat in the newsroom.
1:00pm- Back to writing, etc.
3:30pm- While in a waiting hold for editors or interviewee’s to get back to you, look over other staff- writers’ shoulders to see if they’re being just as unproductive as you. If they’re not, be obnoxious until they are. While we call this entertaining, Joe calls this “teenage wasteland.”
5:00pm- Start watching the clock for dinner.
7:00pm- Head out for dinner. Dinner will probably be set up by Andy, who lives on Yelp, doesn’t settle for anything below four-star and likes to try new kinds of foods. Dinner is definitely an adventure.
7:05pm- Realize that you’ve gone the wrong way to get to the dinner place, yell at Andy, turn around and start again.
7:30pm- Decide on a meal to split with one, two or three other people. (Mosaic kids become very money conscious around Saturday, when they only have $7 left for three meals.)
10:00pm- Get back in dorms just in time for curfew.
10:00pm-11:00pm- Hear journalism stories from “dorm parents” Joe and Darlene.
12:00am- Take shower.
1:00am- Play a crazy game of cards. This can get bloody, especially if Andy is losing.
1:15am- Make fun of Lexy. (Out of love…?)
1:30am- Watch videos of Gianna’s eight siblings. Look at pictures of Gianna’s twelve-seater van.
2:00am- Sit around the common room talking. Usually, anything anyone says becomes something to laugh over.
3:00am- Go get blankets and pillows from the dorms.
3:45am- Have a competition to see who can hold an ice cube the longest, until Gianna (the motherly photographer) comes in and shuts us down; try Chinese water torture on Walter; give sleeping Gabe a smiley-face Henna tattoo on his ankle.
4:30am- Fall asleep on the couches in the common room.

Not that I’m getting soppy…

Ashley Lugo // Mosaic Staff Photographer
Andy Fang sips from a juice box in the common room.

By Creo Noveno // Mosaic Staff Writer

It’s strange how quickly the days seem to pass – it feels like only yesterday I’d arrived on campus with naught but a shoddily packed suitcase and the overabundant fear that comes with new territory and even newer faces.

Summers spent lazing about in the house and letting my bones turn to dust before I have to pick myself up all over again for the next school year did not prepare me for these two weeks of work, for the weaving paths around downtown San Jose (always in the morning, never in the evening), for the restaurants terrorized by our motley crew when Andy (how we miss thee) and his Yelp gems find us stomaching cuisine we never thought we’d never have the chance to eat.

I was asked yesterday what word I’d choose to describe my stay in Mosaic, and I stole a line from one of the people I’d interviewed for my stories, because I thought of no better (or, admittedly, vaguer) way to put it: it’s been “an experience.”

Mosaic has been an experience – sometimes scary, sometimes amazing, always busy – and it’s one I can’t trade for anything else, nor is it one I’ll probably ever have again, no matter how many journalism programs I enter after this. The first time is always different: the people, the places, the moments. There will be no more water tortures, no more of Andy’s golden lines, no more dinners, no more trips to Quickly’s or bleary eyed mornings (even though I chickened out after like, three) or deadline days that fill the newsroom with dead (and panicked) silence.

I could say that our time in the program could be immortalized by the paper we’re going to see printed tomorrow morning, but I think that may just be a part of what we’ve taken from these two weeks – interviews and time spent as a “professional” journalist (used very, very loosely) are just as important as all those afternoons spent giggling like loons in the lobby. And maybe that’s what I’ll remember best.

Not that I’m getting soppy.