When I first got the position of editor-in-chief, my biggest fear was that my book
would become the last edition of the Houstonian. It was not securing a yearbook staff, or
finding enough content to fill the pages of a 256 page book, but that soon UH would join
the list of universities around the country to cut their yearbook program, either because
of lack of funding or interest by the student body, or a combination of the two.
And now my fear has become a reality.
I can honestly say that the news did not come as a surprise, after all, the biggest
obstacles I faced as editor was getting people around campus to care about the book.
Every time I would mention the Houstonian, I would get one of two responses: "the
Hotel?" or "UH has a yearbook?" Despite the fact that apart from the Daily Cougar, the
Houstonian has been around longer than any other organization or tradition on campus.
Since 1934, a group of UH students has put together a publication that attempts to
provide a record of student life at the University, capturing everything from student organizations, faculty and staff, frontier fiesta, athletics, etc. and now after 77 years, one of
the Universities oldest traditions is being put to bed.
After looking at several yearbooks from the past, from the first Houstonian printed in
1934, to the 2009-2010 editions, it is clear to see how the book has evolved, but despite
the obvious changes in faces, content, layout and the inclusion of color photographs,
one thing remains true for every Houstonian published until today, and that is, that every
editor, every staff, wanted to tell the story and provide a timeline for students to remember what the University was like that very year, and that stays true for this book.
We can't capture all, we can't include every student in the University, but for those
who have their yearbook, 20 years from now when they dust of the cover of their 2010-
2011 yearbooks, I hope that we can at least provide a memory of what the world and the
University was like this year.
Although I had most of the responsibility for what this book would be like, my visions
and revisions would not have been made possible without the help of many people.
I want to thank everyone who made this book possible, every writer and photographer who has a byline, my editors: Christopher Losee, Joshua Siegel and Newton Liu,
my managing editor and production designer, Lana Flores, and perhaps the most important person, our advisor, Matt Dulin, for answering every question, regardless of how
silly it was or how many times I had already asked it, for trying to keep this sinking ship
afloat, especially when it seemed it was only you and I who cared, and for standing by
not only myself, but this staff when there was trouble, I really could not have done this
without your help and support.
And so now, I say goodbye, to the long days and nights at the office (aka the desk
in the corner of the Daily Cougar office), the deadlines we tried to meet, and the many
attempts to get people interested. It was a pleasure to have been part of this Cougar
As the editor in chief for the 1939 Houstonian wrote in his acknowledgments:
"It is indeed true that we never value anything at its true worth, while we possess it.
But after it is lost and gone beyond recall, we never fail to remember what a precious
thing has slipped through our fingers."
— Patricia Estrada
Houstonian Editor in Chief, 2010-2011