Profiles of Tenacity: Valeria Valdes

Headshot of fourth-year public relations student Valeria Valdes.
Valeria Valdes loves to express her creativity and try new things. (Photos: Submitted.)

Profiles of Tenacity: Valeria Valdes

January 18, 2024

Fourth-year student Valeria Valdes was recently accepted into the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Students class of 2024. Learn more about her below.

Valeria Valdes is a public relations major. She is involved in Talking Dog, TEDxUGA, Catholic Center, and American Advertising Federation.

Why did you choose your major?

I’ve always loved to write and was always intrigued by the craft of communication. Public relations, advertising and marketing are so dynamic that I’m actually able to do so much more than I originally thought. 

What does tenacity mean to you?

Tenacity to me means being satisfied with the amount of work you put in. I believe whatever is meant for me will fall into place for my good, but that still means I have to work for it. This means giving every application, every interview and every experience my 110%. Good habits build discipline, so if you treat a class like a possible job offer then it trains you to never slack. I never want to leave any room for doubt that I could’ve done better and that’s the reason I didn’t get the job. Tenacity is building endurance through the tough times when you have nothing else to give. It always turns out to be worth it!

What is one piece of advice that you would give to other Grady students?

It’s so cliche, but it will always be a “no” if you never try. Even if you’re unsure about it, just apply to that program, walk up to that CMO and talk to everyone. You never know what can happen. Don’t ever rule anything out because it’s different or daunting. Strive to work at a place that pushes boundaries! Challenge the narrative!  Also, check your email regularly. Some pretty awesome opportunities pop up once in a while. 

Valdes smiles at the Cannes lions International Festival of Creativity.
Valdes (right) poses on the steps of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

What are you passionate about? 

People. People. People. This world is so extraordinary, but we don’t take the time to understand it. People are the root of this. That’s why I love this industry. We have the potential to make real good change. Take the time to find the purpose behind a project or client, and watch that fiery passion start to fuel your work! 

What is your most memorable Grady experience?

My study abroad to Cannes, France to attend the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity was my “aha” moment. The work I saw helped me realize that the wildest ideas are possible. The silliest ideas are the most respected ideas. This experience helped me solidify the type of work I want to pursue and has made me the most excited for my professional future. 

Valdes poses with students at TEDxUGA.
Valdes (front right) smiles on stage at TEdxUGA 2023.

What has been your biggest accomplishment in the past year? 

I have just been accepted to be part of the 2024 class of Most Promising Multicultural Students by the American Advertising Federation. I’ll be embarking on this journey to New York City in February, filled with personal growth and professional development. It’s an honor to be one out of 50 students selected nationally and to represent the University of Georgia.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?

Don’t think of it as a dream. Think about it as your reality. I’ve always seen dreams as a bit daunting, but when you’ve overcome that mental hurdle, you’ve already won half the battle. 

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

The Founders Memorial Garden. It’s a nice place I go to when I want to be on campus but not be in the hustle and bustle of things. It’s a good place to clear my head or to ground myself. So many good memories there.

Editor: Jin Lee