Former News Editor Victoria Borlando wrote the news. She’s still doing that, just not for Bwog anymore.

Name, School, Major, Hometown: Victoria Borlando (“Vic”), Columbia College, Double-major in History and French, Philadelphia (-ish), PA

Claim to fame: Ran the Bwog News section, wrote long investigative pieces about the 2021 SWC Strike, started the pop culture moments series, moderated the Philolexian Society, hosted the first school-wide disco, played croquet on the lawns. I also wore a pretty pink windbreaker that was very popular with the crowd.

Where are you going? As I always said in Bwog meetings, “The News section is the only section that doesn’t go on vacation!” In other words, I’m still going to be writing the news at Columbia, just for a grade now.

What are 3 things you learned at Columbia and would like to share with the Class of 2027?

  1. Find your passion first! Though it’s a busy and exhausting four years, undergrad is still just four years. The opportunity to have the space to study what you love outside the bleakness of the workforce is so limited, and if you’re creative and motivated enough, you’ll have the rest of your twenties to plan out how you want to meet your goals with the skills and interests you’ve gained from doing what you love. Also, committing yourself to a career you know nothing about at 18 is scary and often not right for you, so try not to limit yourself like that!
  2. Learn about the world by talking to people, not just by reading books and “theory.” I know, I know, it’s hard to crawl out of Butler and go to a social event, but no book of facts, philosophy, or statistics can capture the human experience of living in a place you’re not familiar with. Take advantage of the diversity on campus! Go to cultural events, go to protests to understand what people are fighting for, take language courses, take history courses, learn about people’s favorite musicians, food, and sports teams—the world is much bigger than [insert random hometown], so there’s no point in making assumptions about a person’s life/politics/class/etc. before having a single conversation with them.
  3. Never write an Op-Ed for Spec.

“Back in my day…” I ate at the Mill Family Korean restaurant at least every other week, and we got PDFs of all the names of housing groups before the lottery began. Oh, and Argentina only had two World Cup titles.

Favorite Columbia Controversy: Why pick one when I just wrote about 20?

What was your favorite class at Columbia? As of May 3, I officially became a double-major, so in spirit of that, I’m picking one from each department:

  1. History of Revolutionary Ukraine, 1917–present (History, Prof. Myroslav Skhandrij): I was lucky enough to be in the first ever seminar section for this class, and it fundamentally changed my interests at Columbia. Prof. Skhandrij is funny, approachable, and an extremely knowledgeable scholar. It also was a history class about a narrative you will never hear anywhere else, so you truly will have your eyes opened to something truly special by the end of the semester.
  2. Theatre of the Absurd (French, Prof. Peter Connor): Sometimes the beauty of art is the ability to evoke the rawest and most shocking emotions within the reader, as well as the capacity to represent reality through its absurdities to cope with collective grief and trauma. Also, Eugène Ionesco was a funny guy.

Whom would you like to thank? I would love to simply recite Joaquin Phoenix’s 2020 Oscars acceptance speech since it captures everything I’m about, but I will not. Instead, I would like to thank my parents and sisters, my family in Argentina, Christopher, my roommates, my closest friends, and Lionel Messi. I’d like to thank the History and French departments at Columbia for being so awesome all the time, and for having the best faculty and course selection one could ever ask for. The Ballet department and Juan’s 11 am class on Fridays for letting me reconnect with my first passion in a fun and supportive way. Bwog, for always keeping it both weird and professional, and for letting me talk for hours on end about topics that truly matter (except for when they don’t). The Philolexian Society for being my home these past four years and for teaching me that it’s okay to have fun, silly times with your friends on the lawns every now and then. Also, a special shoutout to that one music magazine I read in the 8th grade for featuring a long interview with Vampire Weekend and the sheet music for “The Kids Don’t Stand A Chance.” I wouldn’t be writing a Senior Wisdom right now if I had not encountered it. Lastly, I’d like to give my gratitude to everyone who has ever read my essays, my articles, my jokes, my texts, my pop culture and music reviews, my resumé (unless you made the mistake of not hiring me), and more: you’re the reason I’m like this.

One thing to do before graduating: Go to the Jed D. Satow Room at 9pm every Thursday evening. But only if you are cool.

Any regrets? Never strategically befriending St. A’s people so I could go to their parties and see the Vampire Weekend chandelier. There’s still time to let me see it, though!

BONUS QUESTION: What does the “B” in “Bwog” stand for? Why, “Borlando” of course! I will miss Bwog and this silly series I made up so much, but it’s not goodbye forever! I’ll still keep my subscription to BwogLetter.

Vic and the Immediate Future via Jane Mok