The real treasure is the friends we got to make along the way

The+real+treasure+is+the+friends+we+got+to+make+along+the+way

Kristen Scheaffer, Contributor

As I am sitting here at my laptop, typing away at what may be the most sentimental piece I have written for The Prospector, I cannot help but see the faces of my fellow writers. We all met and became friends because of our passion for words, news and photography. 

These students welcomed me when I, a non-native of El Paso, was trying to find a place with like-minded individuals who I could call friends. My first semester with the paper was the semester back after COVID-19. Julian, editor-in-chief at the time, saw my potential and gave me a chance.  

As my time progressed, I slowly became more acquainted with the others, and I will be forever grateful for that. When I became staff reporter in my spring semester, I became more acquainted with each and every one of my coworkers. Some saw me cry, some heard me laugh, and I opened up to others.  

I would not be able to shout out to everyone because this story would go on for more than 700 words, but I do want to reach out to those I have known since the beginning or worked closely with. 

To Itzel and Emily, I will remember how you inspired me with your tenacity for your work. I was left in awe of how you two could juggle everything without breaking a sweat (or a nail). To Annabella, you were one of the first people to go out of your way to become my friend and you are one of the sweetest people I know. I will also be forever envious of your style. 

To Maria and Katrina, you guys found a friend in me when I discovered we shared a passion for books. You both are phenomenal people and will go on to do great things. Albert, you were the first person I cried to. You made me feel comfortable when things got stressful.  

Alyson, my road trip buddy for life. Keep writing because your words will soar. To Eli, Josie, Brandy, and Ethan; I did not really get close with you guys until this semester, but I feel like we lost time because of it. Hopefully we cross paths again with the internship.  

Emmanuel, Meagan, Jasmin and Roman, I am sorry we only got to know one another for the semester. I enjoyed our conversations and I hope you guys thrive in your future endeavors and I will miss you.  

Vero, Isa, and Amy, you guys have been an amazing support system for us as we tried to become stronger writers. You will be greatly missed. Tracy, I already miss you and thank you for the one-on-ones we had when I was stressed. Last, but certainly not least, Professor Gannon, as my semester and my time at UTEP is coming to an end, I am realizing how much I have learned. I will probably still second-guess myself, but you pushed me to do things I was not sure I could do.  

Maybe I should have said something more profound, but I am the person I am today because of the people around me. I wish I had space to say everything I am feeling.  

Every one of these people became my family away from home, and I could not ask for more in a community. With graduation around the corner, my family prepares to relocate and I will have to start over. I don’t know if I am ready, but I do know these guys have my back. 

What the next chapter holds for me, I am not sure. I can only hope grad school is somewhere in the mix. It is now that I prep the essays, prepare the resumé, and ask around for letters of recommendation.  

When all is said and done, El Paso taught me so much about family and community. I can only hope to take this with me on whatever my next big adventure is. I may not be a true El Pasoan by birth, but I am one by heart. 

Kristen Scheaffer is a contributor and can be reached at [email protected]