Through sun and rain, Amanda Britt made her way to graduation with a humble smile that surfaced a radiant personality. With a double major in journalism and psychology, Britt is ending her time at the Daily Lobo as the photo editor.
She started at the University of New Mexico with little idea of what her passions were and came out on the other end with love — not just for journalism and psychology, but also for herself. When Britt was diagnosed with bipolar depression, she faced a new challenge that she struggled to handle throughout college.
"This whole year has been a battle with my mental health, but now I feel like I’m good again," Britt said. "I am learning more about myself and being kind to myself."
Britt said that she wants others suffering from mental health issues to know that they are never alone.
"I want to be a voice for those suffering with depression, anxiety or any other mental health disorder ... I hope I can disseminate a message of hope and support," Britt said.
Britt hopes for a career involving a non-profit news organization, either local or national. A passion to help others encompasses Britt and shapes her future. However, future plans hang in the balance as the COVID-19 pandemic causes waves of unemployment — a challenge that recent graduates are now starting to encounter.
"A lot of us are uncertain about what the future holds right now," Britt said. "I'm up for anything. You just have to be flexible."
Britt said she was disappointed that she was missing the smaller journalism and psychology graduation ceremonies rather than the large ceremony for all students.
She was hired on the spot to be a reporter for the Daily Lobo and quickly rose to an editor position soon after. Britt wishes that she had joined the news staff sooner and reflects on the memories and friendships that working with her colleagues has brought her.
Hanging on the wall is Britt's very first paper for the Daily Lobo as an editor: an LGBTQ edition that had more photographs than usual. The night before the release was long and held many challenges but was a fun and memorable one.
"(The Daily Lobo) made me more outgoing as a person, and I made a lot of friends while working here," Britt said.
Britt said that working at the Daily Lobo has made her a much better writer, a skill she is sure to use in her future.
Close friend Destiny Martinez recalled the comical start of their friendship.
"She was actually my boss at a movie theater a few years ago," Martinez said. "Three months later, we had a class (together) and she called me over to sit by her ... I was like, 'Of course I have to sit with my boss.'"
It turned out to cause a major change in life for both women. After this, Martinez and Britt started hanging out together almost every day and easily consider each other best friends.
"I don't think she understands how badass she is," Martinez said. "People know how good she is because she loves everyone, and she's so motivated to help people and be a good person."
"Her heart is so big," Martinez said. "She's always been the kindest person I know (and) so willing to do anything for anyone."
Britt loved living at Lobo Village with her friends and said she will miss the campus lifestyle.
A humble and selfless reporter, Britt sets out to change the world one story at a time.
Megan Gleason is the culture editor at the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @fabflutist2716