News Editor Andy Main and Editor-in-Chief Ian Weiner, say goodbye to The Good Five Cent Cigar. Photo by Grace DeSanti

It is common advice to tell incoming college freshmen to get involved at their new school. We were told to find a club that interested us, because it would help keep us busy and create friendships. 

In the fall of 2017, as freshmen ourselves, we took this advice to heart and joined The Good 5 Cent Cigar. Two and a half years later, we can certainly say that this advice we were given as new college students was true. 

For the past five semesters, being a part of The Cigar has certainly kept us busy, and it certainly has created friendships. 

Whether it was working as part of an investigative team, writing two or more stories a week as staff reporters, or working on the editorial staff and staying in our Memorial Union office on production nights long after everyone else in the building had left, being a part of The Cigar has made sure that we rarely are sitting around after class with nothing to do. 

Although The Cigar has kept us busy, that is nothing compared to the friendships it has helped us create. 

At the start of our freshman year, the two of us hardly knew anyone else in the room, and we hardly knew each other. By the end of our freshman year, the two of us, and several other members of our editorial staff, had become good friends. We also became friends with the seniors who were our editors at the time, and the times we spent with them have become some of our favorite college memories. 

By the end of our freshman year, the friendships The Cigar had helped us form were strong, but they have only grown since then. Fast forward to 2019 and us two, along with two other members of our editorial staff, are housemates, and the rest of our staff – both editors and reporters alike – are among some of our closest friends at URI.

I guess it’s a good thing that we took that advice and got involved. 

Now, as our time at The Cigar is coming to a close, it is important to look back upon the organization’s growth over the past year.  

Over the past year, The Cigar has often published 16-page editions instead of the traditional 12, the amount of reporters and contributing reporters has grown, the quality of articles has increased and more student’s voices have been incorporated into the articles. 

It must be mentioned that a large part of this success has been made possible because of our unwavering dedication. We have continually placed The Cigar in position to succeed, often pushing off our school work and other activities for interviews and other newspaper related activities. We focused on helping the rest of the editorial staff make their visions for their section a reality, have increased the amount of campus we cover, increased the number of student voices in our articles and helped to expand our social media presence. Our website traffic has nearly doubled, and we see more and more racks around campus empty every week.

As this semester comes to a close and our terms end, we will hand over the reins of editor-in-chief and news editor and not run for re-election, as one of us is about to graduate and the other will pursue a second major and opportunities that come along with it. Although we won’t be on the editorial staff next semester, we are excited to watch the next group of editors continue the growth of The Cigar, and we are very excited to see those who assume our positions on the editorial staff thrive in their new roles. 

With our last pitch meeting done, our last production night complete and elections only four days away, our time with The Cigar may be all but completed, but the memories we have made, the experience we have gained and the friendships we have made at The Cigar are sure to far transcend our college years. 

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Ian Weiner
There's the way things are perceived and then there's reality. The role of a journalist is to help the public differentiate between the two. I'm doing this because I want to make a difference. Giving people the resources they need to be informed is one of the most critical things any society can have. In addition, I like telling stories, whether they are about people, places, things, events, you name it. Lastly, it is an honor to be able to lead the editorial staff, help them achieve everything they want, and leave knowing The Cigar will have a brighter future than ever before.