TXST Sports Prez and Star alumnus Andrew Zimmel sits during a “From the Prez” segment in Studio C of The Star and KTSW newsrooms. Zimmel graduates from Texas State and leaves The Star as one of the most talented, straightforward and honest journalists the publication has ever seen.

Editor’s Note: “-30-” has traditionally been used throughout journalism to indicate the end of a story. The Star calls upon its graduating seniors to write a Senior 30—a farewell piece to our readers—indicating the conclusion of a journalist’s time as an active member of our organization/publication.

I came to Texas State for radio.

Before I even got into high school, I knew that sports talk was the thing I wanted to go to school for. When I came to Texas State for the first time, before we even got done with the campus tour, I was looking for the radio station. This made ending my college experience with The University Star that much sweeter.

I joined The Star because a guy I knew of at the time shot me a Twitter DM. During the 2018 Texas State football season, I spent most weekends pulling my hair out as the bad losses racked up.

At the time, I was starting to gain a following on Twitter from Bobcat fans as I would make jokes about the athletic administration, players and coaches from the point of view of a depressed fan.

During a game I received a message from Jakob Rodriguez, who at the time had just taken over the sports section at the paper. He asked if I could turn these tweets into longer, more fleshed out, articles. I’d tried to do something like that before with The Star my sophomore year, but it had fallen apart quickly; I was dubious of how it would work the second time.

Quickly Jakob and I became close friends, and that made the writing come easier. My first print story was about alumni paying for a banner to fly over a game with the hashtag #FireTeis. I’ll say this about newspapers: There is nothing sweeter than seeing your name in print.

Over the last two years I’ve gotten to do so many cool things under the banner of The Star. From covering games to creating a one of a kind tailgate show, to doing the weekly Prez segments, to starting to podcast through The Star.

None of that would have been possible without that message from Jakob. And he did so much more for me than just getting me involved. He helped establish a Star family and helped me get involved with an organization I never thought I would have.

The coronavirus took away sports—the thing I care about most—but it also took away the opportunity to see my friends walk off the stage and into a world that needs good journalists now more than ever. I’m still a radio guy to the core, but I will never forget the lessons I learned and the friends I made at The University Star.

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