Caryl Espinoza Jaen, a third-year studying English, has worked his way up the ladder to managing editor of NC State’s student-run paper Technician. Although he began as a writing correspondent for the opinion section in his first semester of freshman year, Espinoza Jaen quickly became heavily involved with the paper. 

“I had read a few columns and specifically liked the opinion section,” Espinoza Jaen said. “My red flag is that I'm a philosophy minor, so I really like argumentative writing. I thought ‘Oh, this looks cool. I'm going to try it out and see if I like it.’ I ended up really liking it.”

Espinoza Jaen was quickly hired as assistant opinion editor before moving into the position of opinion editor, which he held virtually throughout the 2020-21 school year. Entering the position of managing editor this year shifted his responsibilities to encompass a larger scope of what goes on at the paper. In addition to doing final reads of all opinion and news articles, editorials and cartoons, managing editors help lead staff meetings, handle timesheets and perform outreach to the student body. 

The broader perspective of the position allows Espinoza Jaen more insight into the overall running of the paper, but somewhat limits his direct interaction with the staff writers and correspondents.

“It's one of the parts I do miss about my job,”  Espinoza Jaen said. “When you’re editing, you interact directly with staff writers. As managing editor, you don’t do that. You look more at where sections as a whole can improve.” 

Despite that, working with the paper has been hugely impactful on Espinoza Jaen’s college career. He credits Technician with huge shifts in his confidence and comfort in his identity which allowed him to come out publicly in one of his first opinion columns.

“I've grown a lot more comfortable with myself as a Hispanic individual, as an immigrant, as an international student and as a queer person, because I've had a really supportive friend group here and also a platform where I can talk about issues and events either through news, opinion or culture,” Espinoza Jaen said. 

 Espinoza Jaen’s work with Technician has solidified his goals to go into the media and journalism field where he intends to continue editing newspapers, journals or magazines. Beyond the work itself, though, Espinoza Jaen has found an incredibly strong community among his co-workers. 

“I prioritize fun in my work,” Espinoza Jaen said. “If I'm doing something I want to have fun doing it. I want to enjoy what I'm doing. I think a lot of the editorial board members are really fun and awesome and kind, so I really just enjoy hanging out with them in general.”

Apart from his work with Technician, self-proclaimed musichead Espinoza Jaen likes to mix music and has been training to DJ for WKNC throughout the semester. 

In addition to managing, Espinoza Jaen continues to write for the news, culture and opinion sections of Technician. He encourages anyone vaguely interested in media and journalism to join the paper. 

“The experiences that I've had have made me self-actualize into a version of myself that I'm really content with,” Espinoza Jaen said.