I have to be honest, I’m a little bit nervous about finding the right words to perfectly say goodbye to my time here as Executive Editor. At the risk of sounding hyperbolic, working at Cooglife Magazine was truly nothing short of amazing, and the time between now and my first issue at the beginning of last year has gone by so incredibly quickly. However, I’m thrilled to see how this publication continues to grow, so I’m going to try my best to give it a proper farewell.
Confession: When I first came on as editor I had … absolutely no idea what I was doing and was terrified out of my mind to start. Before Cooglife, my media experience was based in hard news reporting. So, even though I was a pro at AP style, the thought of having to layout a spread in a magazine was a whole new ball game that I was sure I was going to strike out on.
However, even with this initial fear, the biggest lesson I ended up learning here was that you can accomplish anything if you just put in the work. I spent so long preparing for the first issue, and when the time finally came to submit the work my team had created — I was so proud to show it off. Every issue since then I felt more and more confident in my skills and excited to try out new ideas, and as of now I am so proud of the editor and creator I have become.
In my opinion, the importance of a life and arts magazine at a college cannot be overstated. Students need a space where they can speak up about what they’re passionate about: whether that’s media, culture, spreading wisdom or anything else under the hot Houston sun. This magazine has also been a place where students interested in media have been able to learn and grow in their field. I am so proud of each and every one of my writers, and it’s been an absolute joy getting to read their stories each week and hear their amazing ideas for Cooglife. I have many wonderful memories here, but my favorite has to be each time a writer has come to me with an idea they are excited to write and working with them to get it published.
As I start a new chapter of my life, I am genuinely so excited to see where Cooglife is headed. The publication’s new editor McKenzie Misiaszek is a brilliant, creative and amazingly dedicated person, and I could not be leaving the magazine in better hands. Just in the last year, Cooglife has grown so much, and I have no doubt that it will exponentially continue that path with the great McKenzie leading the charge.
Heads up: I am about to begin my thank you’s to various individuals, so here’s an incoming sappiness warning:
Thank you to each and every one of my amazing team of writers. You all have put out so many entertaining, emotional, fun and beautiful stories that have made Cooglife into what it is. Without you, there would be no magazine, and your hard work cannot be overstated.
Thank you to Juana Garcia, Creative Director of The Cougar, for creating so many GORGEOUS graphics, covers and illustrations for Cooglife’s print and web editions. Your work has defined the last year of the publication, and your talent is why many of our readers have had their attention caught by the magazine. You are an absolute treasure of a human.
Thank you to Jo’Tavia Norbert and Tyriana Terrell, my fantastic assistant editors I was so incredibly fortunate to have over the last year. The continuous creativity and amazing work from you both had me always confident that there was going to be something great out in Cooglife that week. I could not have made many issues and our wonderful website without y’all.
Thank you to the students in Coog Radio, CoogTV and The Cougar for working with Cooglife to give us advice, get the word out about writing opportunities and collaborate on story ideas. Anytime I reached out, someone was always willing to help me at the drop of a hat, and it was amazing having a wonderful support system by my side.
Thank you to everyone at MediaMate for always making me feel informed, welcomed, and excited about the next issue or event at hand. I have never once had to stress about the advertising and marketing needs of Cooglife, and for that I am eternally grateful for all of your team’s hard work.
Thank you to the Center for Student Media staff, for being the best coworkers and supervisors I have ever had the pleasure of working with. I could write an entire 10-page essay about how great Lawrence, Chris, Marina, Pam, Alex and Ms. Leona (bless her) were to me over the last year, but I legitimately think I would start crying (the curse of being a Pisces), so I’ll leave this short and sweet: thanks so incredibly much team, and Marina is right … Tarantino IS overrated.
Lastly, thank you to the University of Houston for providing Cooglife with the space and opportunity to exist. I love this University with everything I have, and it has been a gift being able to pour that passion into a project that aims to serve the amazing people that are the UH students.
Anyways, if you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading and as always…
Outgoing Executive Editor