The Prospector

Grateful for these moments

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Grateful for these moments

Brianna Chavez, Copy Editor

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Exhausting, stressful, but exciting.

Those are the words I would use to describe my time at The Prospector.

I walked into the Student Media and Publications office during the summer of 2017, not knowing what I was getting myself into, but I knew if I wanted to become a better writer and a better journalist and become more involved on campus, I needed to start somewhere.

I knew, from The Prospector’s reputation, that it would be the perfect place to do so.

I was an entertainment contributor when I first started. My first story was an album review. I had no idea what I was doing. I felt so clueless, but that’s what is so great about The Prospector. You have the space to grow, and for that I will be forever grateful for.

I learned about deadlines and why they’re important (and the past editors know, I barely met them, or didn’t meet them at all).

I wrote stories that were never published (and now I know why).

I wasn’t the best writer, but The Prospector gave me all the tools I needed in order to get better.

I knew when I chose to major in multimedia journalism, the process would not be easy. My parents were a little shocked to hear me say that I was going to pursue a career that, to be honest, does not pay very well.

There were moments where I thought I wasn’t cut out for it. Moments where I thought I should have just changed my major.  However, if it weren’t for the friendships and connections I made here, I don’t think I would be writing this column today.

Last year, our department went through several changes. We lost our amazing director Kathy Flores after she announced she would be retiring and we lost several seniors who had dedicated their collegiate experience to this office. It was a difficult transition. There were times where I felt we were barely hanging on. However, our department had people who wanted the paper to succeed despite all the changes being made­—Javier Cortez, Adrian Broaddus, and of course, our wonderful Director Veronica Gonzalez. 

My senior year has been the most demanding. Not only was I enrolled in school full time, I was working two other jobs on top of becoming copy editor, plus the challenges and struggles I was facing at home.

However, I don’t think I would have done it any other way. Even though I spent my final moments feeling like I should give up, stressed out, and exhausted, the one place I truly loved being was in the Student Media and Publications office. I covered amazing events and told important stories—President Trump’s rally, the selection of a new UTEP president, and the opportunity to speak to our current president, Dr. Diana Natalicio.

First off, I would like to thank Kathy Flores, our former director who helped me realize that I wanted to stay at The Prospector, take care of it and really commit to it during my senior year. Thank you to Michaela Roman, our former editor-in-chief. I learned so much from you during your time here. You inspired me to become a better writer and I’m so grateful that I get to call you my friend.

Thank you to Javier Cortez and Adrian Broaddus for being patient with me last year, even though I know you all didn’t believe in me.

Thank you to Tracy Roy, assistant director at The Prospector. You came to the department during a difficult time when lots of changes were happening. I’m so grateful that we’ve been able to work together. You’ve always given me guidance and pushed me to become a better writer and editor.

Thank you to Veronica Gonzalez. You’ve always believed in me and always told me that everything was going to be OK. You’ve been there for me during the most difficult times in my life. Thank you for helping me along the way and helping me get to the finish line.

To my coworkers (I would name them all, but you know who you are), thank you for allowing me to trust you. It’s great to work at a place where you can trust people. I’m grateful for the times we’ve spent the wild and LONG production nights every Monday. More importantly, I’m grateful for your friendship.

To Curly Mendez, thank you for having my back and telling me like it is. I know I can always count on you. To Gigi Flores, I can’t believe we made it. We’ve been together since the beginning when we took basic multimedia writing, and I couldn’t have imagined it any other way. Thank you for friendship and being with me every step of the way.

I would like to thank my family, especially my parents. It took them a while to come around to the idea that pursuing a degree in journalism would be worth it. They have always expressed to me how proud they are of me every time one of my stories got published, even the short ones. I love you mom and dad. Thank you for all the sacrifices you’ve made for me and the love you give me every day.

Lastly, I would like to thank UTEP. There was a moment in my life where I felt like staying in El Paso would set me back. Most of my friends were attending other universities across the country. For a moment I resented my parents because of that and other factors that went into play. As my senior year comes to an end, I couldn’t be more grateful to be able to call this university my second home. I love UTEP and I always will. I’ll miss coming to class every day and walking around the beautiful campus. This university will have a special place in my heart.

Thank you UTEP and, more importantly, thank you The Prospector.

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Assayer of Student Opinion.
Grateful for these moments