Parting Ways: The Cougar’s outgoing editorial board members say goodbye

Juana Garcia/The Cougar

Juana Garcia/The Cougar

With the academic year coming to an end, our outgoing editorial board members have taken a moment to reflect on their time at The Cougar.

Sydney Rose, Managing Editor

My time at The Cougar has been such a large part of my college experience. This office is the place 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 haven’t spent a semester away from this office or this amazing staff before, and going to a whole different country to study abroad next semester feels unreal.

I have 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 individuals and go through the ranks. Starting off my freshman year as a senior staff writer in the news section to where I am now as the managing editor has been quite a journey.

One that I will appreciate more than anyone knows. I’m so grateful for everything I got to accomplish here. I love you all and don’t miss me too much! XOXO, Sydney.

Aminah Tannir, News Editor 

It’s hard to put into words how writing at The Cougar has transformed my college experience. Starting out as an eager staff writer, I was excited 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 greater when I started writing as an assistant editor and finally as a news editor. I have been able to cover the topics I’ve been passionate about such as COVID-19, initiatives at the College of Medicine and the groundbreaking research happening on campus.

Whether it was faculty, students or staff I had a great time meeting new people and interacting with members of our campus community to tell their stories. Aside from writing, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to meet some of my closest friends. They’ve helped me not only develop as a writer but as a person and will have me look back on this experience with no regrets.

It’s been an honor writing for The Cougar and the UH community. I’m gonna miss y’all, good luck!

Ashley Gwananji, Assistant News Editor

Howdy, y’all! My time at The Cougar has been amazing from start to finish. It’s incredible to know that my hobby of writing has contributed to something greater than myself. This organization has allowed me to fully express who I am behind the tap of my laptop’s keyboard.

In return, I’ve spent working hours with some of the amazing and talented people I also consider my friends. While I enjoyed writing and delivering stories, I mainly enjoyed interacting with people within the UH community. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and talking with the most interesting and impactful individuals.

Without The Cougar, I wouldn’t have been able to meet a member on the Forbes “30 Under 30” list, a former reality tv star and a well-known basketball player for the Knicks. However, I will admit some of the most interesting individuals I’ve met have been through “Ask Ashley.” It’s been an honor running my little anonymous advice column and providing the most unhinged advice.

As I finally move into the next chapter in my life as a #ForeverCoog, I will truly miss you all. Thank you so much for everything. Love y’all!

Anna Baker, Opinion Editor

The Cougar has been an invaluable experience for me. It was a fantastic outlet for my writing and a wonderful learning opportunity. While having to switch between MLA and AP style as both an English major and opinion editor was sometimes a challenge, I’m so grateful for my time here.

The Cougar has opened up opportunities for me to write about things I’m passionate about such as the University’s need to expand HyFlex classes and the attack on LGBTQ rights in this country. Writing about these topics has only made me a better communicator and I know that I will take these skills wherever I end up in the future.

The thing I appreciate most about The Cougar has been the people. I had a lot to learn when I became opinion editor and I can’t thank the rest of the editorial board enough for what they’ve taught me. Whether I needed help finding a source or clarifying information, I knew I could count on the people around me.

I always looked forward to coming to work everyday and I hope I can find the same enjoyment and community in the future. 

Juana Garcia, Creative Director 

The Cougar shaped my college experience and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities from this organization. I would not have guessed that a simple application for a graphic designer position would lead me here as a creative director today.

I am truly honored to have helped create graphics and covers for both The Cougar and Cooglife. This organization was a great way to practice and better my skills as an artist and a leader, which will help me in the future.

I enjoyed working with a team of wonderful artists and minds to put out content for this newspaper. What I loved the most while being here was the people. I met some lovely people and I will not forget the talented leaders from my time here. There was never a dull day while working at the office, a place full of open and creative voices.

It has been a wild journey and I am grateful that I stuck around for it. This work environment made this a wonderful first job and I can not thank The Cougar enough. I will miss my time here! Take care! 

Gerald Sastra, Assistant Creative Director

I can proudly say that my experience working at The Cougar has been life-changing, I have grown so much these past couple of years and that is thanks to the supportive and friendly environment.

The Cougar was the first student organization that I joined and it is an incredible establishment with even more incredible people. As a graphic design major, I can say that it was a great outlet for me to develop my skills in design, both technically and conceptually. Seeing my work around 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 am super honored to have worked with a team of super talented and driven writers, designers, and many other people here who I will miss very much. The relationships that I have made will be something that I will cherish for my entire life.

I hope that our work has made a positive, lasting impact on campus. I wish the best of luck to the future members of the editorial board! Thank you all, It’s been a pleasure working with all of you! 


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