In honor of The Cougar’s final print issue of the academic year, our outgoing Editorial Board members took a moment to reflect on their time at the journal.
Sydney Rose, Editor-in-Chief
My time at The Cougar was such a big part of my college experience. This office is where I spent most of my hours, where I met many of my close friends, and where I developed a love for writing and editing.
Saying goodbye is almost unimaginable as I’ve never spent a semester away from this amazing office or staff before, and going to a whole other country to study abroad next semester feels unreal.
I’ve learned so much about myself and what I want to do with my life after college, just with the opportunity to be around like-minded people and move up the ladder. Starting my first year as a senior editor in the news section to where I am now as an editor has been quite a journey.
One that I will appreciate more than anyone knows. I’m so grateful for everything I’ve been able to accomplish here. I love you all and don’t miss me too much! XOXO, Sydney.
Aminah Tannir, Editor-in-Chief
It’s hard to put into words how much writing at The Cougar transformed my college experience. I was first a passionate writer, I was thrilled to be able to inform the campus community about important issues, especially at the start of a pandemic.
My time there quickly snowballed into something much bigger when I started writing as associate editor and finally as editor. I was able to cover the topics I’m passionate about, such as COVID-19, initiatives at the College of Medicine, and groundbreaking research happening on campus.
From faculty, students, and staff, I had a great time meeting new people and interacting with members of our campus community to tell their stories. Besides writing, I had the incredible opportunity to meet some of my closest friends. They helped me develop not only as a writer but as a person and will make me look back on this experience with no regrets.
It was an honor to write for The Cougar and the UH community. I will miss you all, good luck!
Ashley Gwananji, Associate Editor
Hi, all of you! My stay at the Cougar was amazing from start to finish. It’s amazing to know that my writing hobby has contributed to something bigger than me. This organization allowed me to fully express who I am behind the tapping of my laptop keyboard.
In return, I have spent hours working with some of the amazing and talented people who I also consider my friends. Although I loved writing and delivering stories, I especially loved interacting with people in the UH community. I had the pleasure of meeting and chatting with the most interesting and influential people.
Without The Cougar, I wouldn’t have been able to meet a Forbes “30 Under 30” list member, a former reality TV star and well-known Knicks basketball player. However, I will admit that some of the most interesting people I have met have gone through “Ask Ashley”. It’s been an honor to lead my little anonymous advice column and provide the most unbalanced advice.
As I finally enter the next chapter of my life as #ForeverCoog, I will truly miss you all. Thank you very much for everything. I love you all!
Anna Baker, opinion writer
The Cougar was an invaluable experience for me. It was a fantastic outlet for my writing and a wonderful learning opportunity. Although having to switch between MLA and AP style as a major and opinion English editor has been a challenge at times, I am very grateful for my time here.
The Cougar has opened up opportunities for me to write about things I’m passionate about, like the University’s need to expand HyFlex courses and the attack on LGBTQ rights in this country. Writing about these topics has only made me a better communicator and I know I will take these skills with me wherever I find myself in the future.
What I appreciate most about The Cougar are the people. I had a lot to learn when I became an opinion writer, and I can’t thank the rest of the editorial board enough for what they taught me. Whether I needed help finding a source or clarifying information, I knew I could count on the people around me.
I always look forward to coming to work every day and hope to find the same fun and community in the future.
Juana Garcia, Creative Director
The Cougar has shaped my college experience and I am extremely grateful for the opportunities this organization provides. I wouldn’t have guessed that a simple application for a graphic designer position would land me here as a creative director today.
I am truly honored to have helped create graphics and covers for The Cougar and Cooglife. This organization has been a great way to practice and improve my skills as an artist and leader, which will help me in the future.
I enjoyed working with a team of wonderful artists and minds to post content for this journal. What I liked the most about being here were the people. I met lovely people and I will not forget the talented leaders of my time here. There has never been a dull day working in the office, a place full of open and creative voices.
It was a crazy trip and I’m grateful to have stayed there for it. This work environment made for a wonderful first job and I can’t thank The Cougar enough. I’m going to miss my time here! Take care!
Gerald Sastra, Deputy Creative Director
I can proudly say that my experience working at The Cougar has been life changing, I have grown so much in the past two years and it is thanks to the supportive and friendly environment.
The Cougar was the first student organization I joined and it’s an amazing institution with even more amazing people. As a graphic design student, I can say that this has been a great outlet for me to develop my design skills, both technically and conceptually. Seeing my work on campus was an indescribable honor, and I was able to have a weekly regimen to practice my skills from the weekly prompts and requests.
I’m super honored to have worked with a super talented and driven team of writers, designers, and many other people here who I will dearly miss. The relationships I have made will be something I will cherish all my life.
I hope our work has had a positive and lasting impact on campus. I wish good luck to the future members of the editorial board! Thank you all, it was a pleasure working with you all!