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Brent McDonald

Brent McDonald

Senior video journalist | The New York Times | Class of 2001

If it happened to Brent McDonald at Illinois, it’s a good bet it happened at Allen Hall, Unit One

“Poetry slams, artists in residence, activism of all sorts — Allen Hall was a dormitory for students who cared more about Foucault than about football, more about old blues records than about fraternity parties," says McDonald, now a senior video journalist for The New York Times.

"Living there came with the extra perk of 24-hour access to a basement photography lab. I spent long nights in that tiny darkroom — developing, printing, and reprinting, and inhaling the comforting fumes of D-76, stop baths, and fixers.

"Discovering the photographic process was a revelation that set me on a path from which I’ve yet to turn back.”