Meet The Rival’s graduating directors

Like spring weather and in-between-class naps, all good things must come to an end. In a few weeks, our current directors, Managing Editor Sam Parkerand Director of Communications Anthony Nguyen, will graduate and (hopefully) move on to bigger and better things.

Both took over The Rival this semester when our previous communications director went abroad and our managing editor graduated. Sam is graduating with a degree in International Affairs with a French minor, and Anthony is double-majoring in Political Science and History with a minor in American studies (show-off).

For those of you who’ve read or followed us, here’s your chance to meet the men behind the madness.

Sam “Good Cop” Parker (left) with Anthony “Bad Cop” Nguyen

Sam “Good Cop” Parker (left) with Anthony “Bad Cop” Nguyen

As heads of the Rival, it’s Sam and Anthony’s job to manage the site, execute content weeks and much more. They even edit articles from time to time, just to make sure that our writers (@ me) follow legal and ethical guidelines when covering controversial topics accurately and fairly.

Their positions also allow them to see stories as a work in progress, from the research to editing stages. Once published, they can see the final product come to fruition and watch as the shares and views pour in.

When asked what their favorite Rival GW article was from this semester, Sam said “Why I need trigger warnings” because he felt it was a very well-written piece that performed well. Anthony’s was a satirical piece about April the giraffe that broke our site due to traffic, earning over 770,000 views.

Leading The Rival GW

Anthony (pictured above in an old photo that he insisted on using), joined The Rival GW the fall of his sophomore year. The next year, he became editor for the Campus section, formerly known as “The Musket,” and then rose to Head of Engagement this fall.

“I joined because I wanted a lax writing org, but not like the Lit magazine,” he said. “I wanted to write serious non-fiction, but I wanted something less formal or regimented, and I thought The Rival fit that bill.”

Sam joined the fall of his junior year and wrote for the Current section, formerly known as “Why This Matters.”

“I joined because Anthony was my roommate [sophomore year] and convinced me to,” Sam said. “But I missed the spring deadline.”

“If you’re ever drunk and you go to Carvings, you cannot substitute mozzarella sticks for your french fries. I thought I’d substituted and ended up charged $14.”

When asked what the hardest part of their job has been and what they didn’t expect, Anthony and Sam shared the same answer: lawsuit threats.

“I should have been prepared for them because I was threatened with them twice as a writer and editor,” Anthony said. “The hardest part was midnight war councils, rushing back to campus to discuss how to handle them and if changes needed to happen.”

Sam figured that the lawsuit threats would remain just threats, but the “war council” meetings still needed to happen as a precaution.

“I didn’t expect to have to casually flee class to answer phone calls about lawsuit threats,” he added.

Anthony, who has been at The Rival GW almost from its very conception, said it’s been weird to see it transition, but that he really values the team they’ve put together. His favorite development is the collaborative work happening within The Rival.

“Our ad-hoc teams in the past were very artificial,” he said. “Now, people have come to us organically wanting to work together, and these have been long term teams.”

Sam agreed and added that he likes when staffers start new projects, like Courtney Buble and Reed Westcott creating our weekly Rival Review, and Halley Brown leading the Video team.

“It’s not like we’re all best friends,” Sam said, “but I like to think that we all get along really well.”

The future

Some general advice from Sam: “Take your job seriously, but we are dope as fuck; you can do anything.” Anthony added: “Don’t treat this as a resume filler; you won’t have fun if you just do the bare minimum.”

Anthony had some extra advice for his successor specifically. “Pay more attention to keeping up a certain social media personality, especially with our Twitter,” he said. “And don’t take everything as seriously as you might want to.”

Sam, I think, was just waiting for me to ask so he could share his words of wisdom to the next Managing Editor. He said it’s a constant job that keeps you very busy, so make it as fun as possible. He then shared words of wisdom for all of us.

“If you’re ever drunk and you go to Carvings,” he said, “you cannot substitute mozzarella sticks for your french fries with an F Street. I thought I’d substituted and ended up charged $14.”

Thanks for everything, boys — but especially Sam, since Anthony put me on probation for not ordering his favorite thing at Deli. Keep on raising higher.

Bonus: Rapid Fire Round

Where are you from?

  • Sam described it as the “Appalachia of Connecticut”

  • Anthony: New Hampshire

Favorite food?

  • Sam: Pizza

  • Anthony: Spring rolls

Favorite non-Rival news source?

  • Sam: Vox

  • Anthony: Vice

Current favorite non-GW Rival?

  • Sam: The Rival Tulane

  • Anthony: The Rival Fordham

Favorite piece you’ve written?

Favorite thing/experience from this semester?

  • Sam: The things we’re doing on campus. He said, “I didn’t think I could make dramatic changes in The Rival, but have done more than I thought I could.”

  • Anthony loved reaching people or learning about orgs he otherwise wouldn’t have. “It’s been very rewarding,” he said.

If you were an animal, what would you be?

  • Sam (after great, lengthy deliberation): Jellyfish?

  • Anthony (immediately): Meerkat.

Originally published at by Emily Milakovic on 4.26.17.
180 views on date of transfer.

CampusEmily Milakovic