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The Dartmouth
April 14, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Photo Essay: Last Looks

Outgoing Photo Editor Caroline Kramer ’24 shares her favorite captures from her time spent working at The Dartmouth.

For one of my first photo assignments, I signed up to take photos on Election Day 2020. I roamed campus for hours and captured shots of students volunteering, waving signs and handing out gear, as well as photos of the polling center in full swing.

Since so much of my first year at Dartmouth took place over Zoom, I took every opportunity to experience in-person campus traditions. For one such tradition — the annual snowball fight — I braved the packed snowball fight on the Green to get in-action photos.

When my first spring term rolled around, more events started to take place outdoors, including Saussy, the annual student dance group showcase. At every Saussy since then, I’ve sat in the front row with my camera and watched incredible performances through my lens.

Sophomore year introduced ’24s to a more “normal” Dartmouth experience, which included our first Dartmouth homecoming football game. I was lucky enough to have the best view in the stadium: on the sideline with my camera and telephoto lens, inches away from the action.

My favorite day to take photos on campus is the first “real” day of spring, when the temperature finally reaches 60 degrees and students flock to the Green. As part of my own personal yearly tradition, I’ll walk in circles around the Green holding nothing but my camera to capture candids of the community enjoying the warmth.

During Green Key in 2022, I tried my hand at concert photography. I took this close-up shot of Charlie Burg while enjoying the Green Key @ Collis performance with several other members of the photo section.

Another Dartmouth “first” I experienced while photographing for The Dartmouth was the 2022 Commencement Ceremony. In addition to snapping pictures of my graduating friends, I got some great shots of Russell Wilson, the commencement speaker, who even reposted my photos to his Instagram.

Following the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Dobbs v. Jackson, protests began in places across the country, and Hanover was no different. Dartmouth students and local community members alike gathered at a rally on the Green, an event that I documented through my photos.

Even when I was away from campus, The Dartmouth afforded me once-in-a-lifetime opportunities. While interning at the U.S. Senate in fall 2022, I learned that President Biden would be delivering an impromptu speech at Union Station, just a short walk from my office. I hopped in line with photojournalists from some of the biggest news outlets in the country, told the event staff about my work at the paper and was ultimately allowed in to photograph the speech.

Throughout my senior year, I’ve spent many afternoons reflecting and watching the sunset from my favorite spot on campus: the photo desk in The Dartmouth offices. 

When I first toured campus as a high schooler, my brother, the editor of the sports section at the time, brought me to the second floor of Robinson Hall to show me the photo desk. I remember staring in amazement at the set-up: shelves filled with camera equipment, dozens of press badges hanging on the wall and beautiful framed photos of moments in Dartmouth history. 

Years later, that cluttered corner desk is now my second home. It’s where I’ve sat on so many nights of production, laughing with the rest of directorate, editing images and brainstorming upcoming visual essays. I still feel the magic from my first visit each time I sit down at the photo desk, and as my time as photo editor comes to an end, I can only hope I’ve left behind some magic of my own.

Caroline Kramer

Caroline Kramer ‘24 is a Government major and Public Policy minor from Palo Alto, California. She has served as the Photo Editor since the spring of 2022 and previously wrote for the Mirror section.