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The Daily Tar Heel

I've always felt like I knew where I was headed.

When I got to UNC, though, that feeling quickly subsided as I struggled for a B in my precalculus class — and the lust for a B.S. started to feel more and more like BS. 

One summer, I was given the chance to work as the media coordinator for a summer camp. With a vague and ill-fitted title, I was thrown into a whirlwind of social media marketing, photography and a surprising amount of DJ power. 

Playlists filled with 2010s hits like "Everybody Talks" and the iconic country song "Dixieland Delight" have left my “On Repeat” playlist riddled with little reminders of my summers as a camp DJ. 

This job inspired me to pursue my love of photography and media production here at UNC.

Since I only began working for The Daily Tar Heel last spring, I am still relatively new to journalism and writing, so I wanted to take this opportunity to introduce myself, to the world of journalism and to the DTH. 

I created a playlist that introduces me, starting with songs I danced to in the kitchen with my parents to songs that I still rock out to now. 

There’s a mix of everything. "Shofukan" by Snarky Puppy and "Paint It, Black" by The Rolling Stones were featured in two of my high school marching band shows. "7 Things" by Miley Cyrus and "Temporary Fix" by One Direction represent the teenage “angst” that only a 17-year-old girl would define as “angst.” 

"I Won’t Say (I’m In Love)" from the Hercules soundtrack and "Almost There" from the Princess and The Frog soundtrack pay homage to my Disney adulthood. Though slightly embarrassing to admit to the entire world, Disney allowed me to escape COVID-19 and quarantine when I needed it most. 

Harry Styles’ "Keep Driving" and "Matilda" pull on my heartstrings, yet bring me so much solace in knowing that I am not alone in feeling the vivid and achy feelings these songs describe. 

The last few songs are representative of where – and who – I am today.

The 502s make such joyous music and are the perfect band to listen to on a walk through the changing leaves on campus. "Our Song" by Taylor Swift is a karaoke night classic, and Swift’s "Paper Rings" has never failed to put a smile on my face. "Kilby Girl" by The Backseat Lovers closes out the playlist, in a somewhat literal “where I am today” sense. 

I try never to say “goodbye” as I leave a conversation or event because it seems all too definitive that our time together is over. In the meantime, I’ll see you soon — and thanks for letting me introduce myself. 


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Samantha Lewis

Samantha Lewis is a 2023-24 assistant photo editor. She is currently pursuing a double major in journalism and media and communications.