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Where Are They Now?: Aaron Cerbone

by Sarah Morris-Copy Editor
Tue, Sep 5th 2017 05:00 pm
Photo provided.
Communications alumn, Aaron Cerbone hitting the daily grind at the
Adirondack Daily Enterprise as the Arts and Entertainment beat reporter for Tupper Lake.
Photo provided. Communications alumn, Aaron Cerbone hitting the daily grind at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise as the Arts and Entertainment beat reporter for Tupper Lake.

Over the years, The College at Brockport's student newspaper, The Stylus, has employed a variety of interesting and diverse people. One of those former employees is Aaron Cerbone, who was first employed as a copy editor in the fall semester of 2015, during his junior year. He put a lot of effort into his work. He enjoyed correcting others' mistakes as a copy editor, and he was promoted to Campus Talk editor within two weeks, where he wrote opinion pieces and designed the Campus Talk section. After that, he graduated as the News editor, a job he loved. 

Cerbone wrote countless articles for every section of the paper, beginning the spring semester of his sophomore year. In his two and a half years at The Stylus, his favorite story was the very last one he wrote in college. 

"It was a feature piece on the popcorn machine in the Seymour College Union.," Cerbone said, "I found out how many pounds of popcorn they made and stuff like that." 

In the article, Cerbone figured out that the Union pops approximately 2,000 pounds of popcorn a year, which costs $7,000. 

Cerbone now lives in Saranac Lake. He spends his time hiking, fishing and playing guitar, four of the few things there is to do in the Adirondacks. Just a few weeks after graduating in May, Cerbone was hired as a staff writer at the Adirondack Daily Enterprise, which is the only daily paper that operates in the Adirondacks. 

"All six million acres," he said. 

Cerbone covers news, arts and entertainment for Tupper Lake and arts and entertainment for Saranac Lake and Lake Placid. Although Cerbone's primarily a writer, he still does a decent amount of editing some days, but he doesn't mind. One thing Cerbone misses about The Stylus are the people. 

"Working with a bunch of other college students on the paper for twenty to thirty hours a week — It was a lot of fun." 

Unfortunately, the fun couldn't last. When Aaron joined the Adirondack Daily Enterprise, he discovered that it wasn't quite as lax as The Stylus was

"On the professional paper, you can't make as many poop jokes. It's a real shame." 

Though, The Stylus wasn't always just fun and games. 

"I definitely don't miss working until 2 a.m. on Mondays, it is amazing to have regular work hours here. Class work is great but the ability to understand the ins and outs of a paper gave me more perspective on my own work and how to make it better." 

That's not the only difference between The Stylus and The Enterprise

"The Enterprise is a daily and the quick turnaround needed for articles is a big difference. At The Stylus, I would usually do interviews on Wednesdays or Fridays and write the stories over the weekend. Here, I usually get interviews, find information, take photos, write the story and edit it all in the same day. It is a much faster schedule, but it has pros and cons. I like having a story fresh in my mind when I write it but it packs a lot into a day." 

Working with The Stylus provided Cerbone with a lot of experience in the field — editing, reporting, writing and, of course, popcorn mathematics. 

"I learned a lot at The Stylus," Cerbone said. "I don't think I would have been nearly as prepared for this job if I hadn't been a part of The Stylus. I might not have even got the job. In my interview for it, the managing editor asked me a lot of questions about my articles on Brockport and they played a huge role in him hiring me over several other candidates. They say journalism is all about your experience and The Stylus was the best way to get that experience. It got me out of my comfort zone; interviewing, writing on a deadline and finding my voice in articles. I felt much more confident entering this job knowing that I had already experienced a newsroom environment and was capable of working in the real world." 

Cerbone has some advice to kids who want to move into the field of journalism: 

"The job that [we] have is incredibly important. We have a very strong journalistic community of people who are invested in creating it or people that want to stay on base. I think that it's important for them to know that for them to play a role in society." 

While Cerbone thinks fondly back on his days with The Stylus, he will continue to push forward in his career and life.