Senior Sendoff: Phil Novotny


I’ll always remember that day. The day where my roommate, Marcus Mitchell, and I first entered the Minaret office. I didn’t know what to expect, and I’m sure Marcus didn’t either. When we broke off into sections after the first general staff meeting, I quickly made the turn to the sports section.

There, I met Jordan Llanes and Griffin Guinta, who gave me my first opportunity that’s cultivated my academic career: the opportunity to write about sports. Sports was and still is my first language, but Jordan and Griff helped me in fuzing it to storytelling. They taught me that the human experience was the main key in documenting such a niche topic.

After a year of writing for the sports section, I became the sports editor. On top of adding to my design, reporting and designing skills, the memories I shared were one that I will wouldn’t trade in for anything. Whether if it was Selene making hilarious rap references that were too dank to resist a burst of laughter, Jordan extensively breaking the sound barrier with his laughs, Mia’s strong desire to turtle, Doha’s non-stop fangirling over Aaron Judge, Lauren’s spongebob references, Jack’s constant reassertion of his manhood, Jackie’s riveting indie taste, and an innumerable amount of memories that would consist of a novel.

What I also didn’t know was the impact that this publication would have on my life. After serving alongside Jordan Llanes as sports editor, I began my public relations internship with the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning. I couldn’t be more thankful for the entire Minaret staff for giving me the experience to take that next step.

Lastly, I want to thank The Minaret for introducing me to my one and only: Zoe Fowler. Without me knowing it, Zoe copyedited my articles when I was writer, and we grew closer once I became sports editor the following year. Some days, we’d both be in the office doing layout, talking about life and building our own unique relationship. Last October, we started dating and we’ve been dating for over a year. To this day, she’s been the everlasting joy that never fails to exhibit her inner strength and beauty.

Again, thank you for being the home away from home, and for the people that came along with it.

Phil Novotny is graduating as a Minaret Sports writer. He served as the Sports section editor in the 2014-2015 school year. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram, and check out more of his stories here. Contact him at

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