Grady InternViews: Erin Riney

This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.

Briefly describe your internship and your responsibilities.

As a project management intern, I am working on the Regions Bank and Blue Cross Blue Shield accounts this summer. I will be working under two senior project managers. In this role, I will be creating timelines, estimating budgets, and scoping the necessary resources for all our projects.

How will this role guide your future career path?

I knew that I wanted to pursue project management at the end of my undergraduate career. I have prior experience creating timelines and managing a team, but I have never done anything regarding budgets or resource management. I am excited to learn more about these so I have a complete skillset as a project manager. These next two months will also help me decide whether I want to work at a bigger agency (like Luckie) or a smaller one after I graduate with my master’s degree.

What has been the most valuable lesson you’ve learned so far?

Be flexible! Agency life is fun, but it is also extremely fast-paced and challenging at times. Sometimes proofing takes a little longer than expected, or a design is finished earlier than the date listed on the timeline. Regardless, be flexible and work together to submit the deliverable to your client when promised.

What has been your favorite part about your internship so far?

My favorite part of the internship has been the people. Everyone that I have met at Luckie so far is incredibly talented, but they are also extremely welcoming and willing to help in whatever way that they can, even if they do not work in your specific department. I have also enjoyed working with some of the bigger clients that Luckie has.

Erin works in an office in Duluth, GA. (Photo:submitted)
If you could describe your internship in only three words, what would they be?

Challenging, hands-on, rewarding.

What advice would you give to students looking to pursue similar opportunities?

For those who want to pursue a career in advertising, I would suggest working in an agency at least once. Even if you decide that you want to work on the client side, agency life challenges you and causes you to grow extremely quickly. It is also beneficial to know both sides of the industry.

Grady InternViews: Alex Anteau

This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.

Briefly describe your internship and your responsibilities.

I’m basically a full-time reporter. Because I’m an intern I don’t do a lot of breaking news or anything, but I write and report stories for the Athens Banner-Herald website.

What is the most valuable lesson you’ve learned so far?graphic which describes Alex Anteau. hometown is izhevsk, Russia. major is health and medical journalism (master's of arts), Alex's title is a reporting intern at the Athens Banner-Herald. The location of the internship is in Athens, GA although it is a hybrid role.

As a health reporter, I spend a lot of time talking to the people who are most involved and affected by the subject I’m writing about. This involves a combination of trauma-informed reporting and taking the time to establish trust with the person you’re interviewing. The most important lesson I’ve learned as I’ve stepped into my first full-time reporting role is that I need to schedule more time for these meetings. It is a huge privilege to have a stranger share a vulnerable and often difficult experience with you. It means a lot to me when I click with someone and have a conversation that goes longer than expected. However, it’s also super important to be mindful of time and respect the schedule of whoever you’re meeting with next.

What about this position has surprised you?

How much freedom I have in my reporting. It’s honestly been really amazing – I’ve had the opportunity to take a lot of initiative in this role. Most of the stories I cover are ones I’ve personally pitched and I’m really grateful for the trust my editors have given me in pursuing the leads I think are important.

What is a challenge or a benefit of working remotely?

The flexibility! My schedule heavily depends on my sources’ availability. Often folks are talking to me after work or on their days off, which means that my hours fall outside the traditional 9-5 office work day. I do love coming into the office for meetings and to talk to my coworkers, but it’s nice to not need to worry about carving out time on-site and to instead focus on getting to know the community and writing. I think the challenge is to not over-do it. In my experience office culture has a lot of built-in down time which you don’t necessarily have at home and I’m still learning to pace myself and not overbook my schedule.

What advice would you give to other students looking to pursue similar opportunities?

Be a self-starter. Get familiar with the beat you’re working in and practice writing and reporting in your downtime (if you haven’t been able to land a paid internship opportunity yet, I highly recommend becoming a Red & Black contributor and applying to staff roles). The more you do journalism, the more experience and clips you’ll have when it comes to apply, and, more importantly, the more you’ll get to know the subjects you are writing about and have insight and story ideas that others might not.

What has been your favorite part about the internship so far?
selfie of student Alex Anteau, working from home.
Alex works from a home office, as the internship is primarily remote. (Photo:submitted)

My coworkers and the projects I’ve been working on. In my first two weeks I’ve had the opportunity to start working on a wide variety of stories, from enterprise to breaking news, covering everything from local elections to neighborhood cats. My editors have given me incredible feedback that’s had a huge impact on how I report, and the other journalists at the Athens Banner-Herald have been gracious and kind and really open to collaborating on stories with me.

Alumni Award Profile: Carolina Acosta-Alzuru

Carolina Acosta-Alzuru (MA’ 96, PhD’ 99) is this year’s recipient of the John Holliman, Jr. Lifetime Achievement Award, honoring a graduate for sustained contributions to the profession throughout a career.

Acosta-Alzuru is professor of public relations at Grady College. She teaches courses in public relations campaigns and cultural studies, specifically focusing on links between the media, culture and society. She has also published multiple articles and books on telenovelas – a subject she has been studying for over 20 years. 

She has won several awards for her teaching and research, including the 2015 AEJMC-Scripps Howard Foundation Journalism and Mass Communication Teacher of the Year for the United States and University of Georgia’s Josiah Meigs Distinguished Professorship. Her career has also taken her abroad to the United Kingdom, Chile and most recently Turkey, where she has conducted research on the tensions between the domestic and global markets for Turkish dramas.

Following is a brief interview with Acosta-Alzuru:

Grady College: What lessons learned from your time as a Grady College student have most helped you succeed in your professional life?

Carolina Acosta-Alzuru: Everything I needed to learn to become a professor and scholar I learned in our College, where I received both my M.A. and Ph.D. degrees. I learned how to turn my intellectual curiosity into rigorous research because I was taught by great researchers. I learned how to be a better teacher because I had fulfilling classroom experiences that challenged and nurtured me. I learned that mentoring is part and parcel of being an educator because I was superbly mentored. Most importantly, I learned in our College that having faith in the person you are teaching and mentoring is essential for their professional and personal development. I learned this because so many of my professors and fellow graduate students surprised me by believing, when I had no clue of this possibility, that I could become a good scholar and a good teacher. I am particularly appreciative of the lessons learned from my major professor and advisor, Dr. Elli Lester Roushanzamir, and from Dr. Pat Curtin, who was then a doctoral student. Their wisdom has guided me throughout my career, and I am extremely happy that Pat is also honored this year with the Distinguished Alumni Scholar Award.

Acosta-Alzuru with Dr. Elli Lester Roushanzamir hooding her as a new Ph.D in 1999. (Photo: courtesy of Carolina Acosta-Alzuru)
GC: What is it about your field that appeals the most to you? Why did you decide to enter that field?

CA: Understanding and unraveling the links between media, culture and society is what I do and what appeals the most to me.  I do this by studying some of the most consumed and, at the same time, most deprecated television genres: Latin American telenovelas and Turkish dramas. My preoccupation with the connections between media, culture and society is consonant with the way I see public relations, a field that has been traditionally viewed from an organizational perspective, but whose relationship with society is mutually transformative. I’m a believer in the many possibilities that public relations has of effecting positive societal change and I bring that belief into my classroom every day. 

GC: What does this recognition mean to you?

CA: The fact that weeks after the announcement of this award I’m still processing the news says how big and unexpected this recognition is for me. I remember watching with admiration John Holliman’s reporting from Bagdad in 1991, I was still in Venezuela then. I was a Ph.D. student in 1998 when the College was saddened and stunned with the news of his death. A year later he received, posthumously, the Lifetime Achievement Award. Soon after that I graduated and began my faculty life here.  These moments have been playing on my mind as I process the deep feelings of gratitude and surprise that this recognition elicits in me. 

Acosta-Alzuru (right) with fellow Grady Ph.D Usha Raman (left) in Hyderabad, India at the IAMCR conference in 2014.
GC: What motivates you?

CA: I love learning, and both teaching and research go hand in hand with learning. The fact that I love my work so much is one of my biggest treasures and the best motivator, of course. I enter the classroom every day in a good mood, ready for the experience of being both teacher and learner with my students. As for my research, I approach it every day with the same fascination it produced on me on day one, more than two decades ago. 

GC: Is there anything else you would like to share?

CA: I’m always looking at what’s ahead: my next class, my next research study, the next conference, and the next time I enter the Journalism building, a place where I’ve always been happy. This recognition, however, has made me stop and look back at the many wonderful people that have walked with me throughout the years: my professors, my students, my colleagues and the staff. All of them have embraced me, all of them have been my teachers, all of them have made this Lifetime Achievement Award possible. 


This is one in a series of profiles about our 2022 Alumni Award honorees and Fellowship inductees. 
All our honorees and inductees will be honored at Grady Salutes: Celebrating Achievement, Leadership and Commitment on April 29, 2022 at Athens Cotton Press. Please visit our Grady Salutes registration webpage for more details. 

 

Grady InternViews: Amari Tillman

This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.

Briefly describe your internship and responsibilities. A graphic explaining Tillman is pursuing an M.A. in Integrated Advertising and Public Relations and working as a Strategy Intern for Weber Shandwick NYC remotely

I am working remotely at Weber Shandwick NYC as a Strategy Intern. I use analytics tools and syndicated data for social listening and market overview respectively based on the research plan developed by the project lead. The strategy team touches base a few times in the research process to establish areas of interest or improvement in the data. Once the research is conducted, the strategy works together to come up with a cohesive strategy to present to the creative team.

I am interning through MAIP, which connected me with Weber Shandwick. The internship is remote – it took some adjusting at first but I have grown to like it. I get to research in the quiet of my home without any distractions. Much of the correspondence is done through Microsoft Teams so meetings and organization have been a breeze. 

How do you feel that Grady has prepared you for tackling the job?

I’ve done many projects that dealt with campaigns and from start to finish. This helped to better understand the relationship between research and creative as well as always keeping KPI’s and budgeting in mind.

What is the most memorable experience you have had during your internship?

Both MAIP and Weber Shandwick NYC have the interns work on (hypothetical) campaigns that is shown to the agency. It’s very reminiscent of days in Grady when we had campaign projects we worked on throughout the semester and is super fun to do. As a strategist, your role in creative execution is limited but doing a campaign from scratch is fun as you get to bring many of your ideas to life. Since it’s hypothetical, the sky is the limit!

What is your advice for other students looking to take on a similar role?

The analytics or software certifications and research you do for classes helps a lot with the role. It helps to have fundamental knowledge in how to conduct research and ask meaningful questions because it will help you think like a strategist.

Grady InternViews: Morgan Gonzales

This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.

Briefly describe your internship and responsibilities. 

I work for the Dallas Morning News, my title is Medicine and Science Reporting Fellow and I am working from my apartment in Athens, GA.

I am on the Business desk and report on medical and science news. I am responsible for reporting and writing my stories. A typical day includes our morning team meeting over video call, reaching out to sources, planning stories, writing and editing.

How is it structured? 

I’m working remotely. Many of my co-workers are still working remotely, so the team has been fantastic about accommodating my lack of physical presence. It’s difficult to not be able to go check out things that I’m covering in person, so I’ve made a ton of phone calls, looked at places on Google Maps and attended some live streams of events. Last week I covered a nurses strike and “attended” via Facebook live. I got help from a veteran reporter on a story about a new, more affordable insulin option, and Google Docs made it easy for us to both be in the document and talk through it together. That experience was so informative. I’m really grateful for the team on the business desk.

What has been the biggest growth you’ve experienced so far?
Morgan Gonzales sits at her desk as she works remotely from Athens, GA. (Photo: submitted)

My writing and interview styles have been the most noticeable improvements to me. I think both of those require experience and time to improve, so I’m so grateful for this opportunity to hone my skills.  

How do you feel that Grady has prepared you for tackling the job?

My professors in the journalism department have done such an amazing job preparing me for this! Professor Sabriya Rice told our class about this opportunity, and because of the reporting skills I gained from her class I decided I should apply. She has been truly inspirational. I came into grad school with no experience actually reporting, so her class taught me critical skills that I’ve relied on heavily during my fellowship. My advisor, Dr. Karin Assmann, has been so supportive while I’ve been in school and during the fellowship. She always checks in on me and makes sure I am doing alright, and has been instrumental in my progress as a reporter. I am so lucky to be in this department and to have the mentors I do!

What is the most memorable experience you have had during your internship? Tell us a story if you have one!

I got to interview a gold medal winning Olympian, Laura Wilkinson, for one of my first stories! That was a highlight for sure. She was great to talk to and that story was fun to write. I’m going to Dallas to do some in-person reporting the first week of August, so meeting my coworkers and working on projects together will be the most memorable experience, I’m sure.

What lessons will you take back with you to Athens in the fall?

I’ll definitely be utilizing the lessons I’ve learned with my writing in the future. But also flexibility, I’ve learned stories don’t always go the direction I think they will, and my day often goes in a different direction than I anticipate. The stories that surprise me are usually the best.

The purpose of the Dallas Morning News-Grady Health, Medicine & Science Reporting Fellowship will be to train the next generation of health care journalists over the next several years. More specifically, the fellowship program will provide journalists-in-training at the University of Georgia with hands-on reporting experience in a big-city newsroom. Each summer, a Grady journalist will work with a Dallas Morning News editor and cover the business of healthcare.

Glen Nowak named associate dean for research and graduate studies

Grady College proudly announces the appointment of Glen Nowak as the college’s new associate dean for research and graduate studies.

Nowak, a professor of advertising and director of the Center for Health & Risk Communication, assumes the new role as current associate dean, Jeff Springston, takes on a new role of Director of MFA Programs.


“I’m delighted to add Dr. Nowak to the leadership team,” said Charles N. Davis, dean of Grady College. “As a world-class researcher with rich experience at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, he’s well positioned to build on existing collaborations not only in the critical area of health communication but across the college and the broader university community.”

Nowak is a prolific researcher specializing in areas of health, vaccine, and risk-related communication including interventions, campaigns, messaging and messages, news media and provider-patient communication. He has been widely consulted and quoted in the media in recent months about COVID-19 vaccine education, messaging and acceptance. He has contributed to several panel discussions and advisory committees about the COVID-19 vaccine, including the UGA Dean Rusk International Center conference in January and the federal National Vaccine Advisory Committee, an entity that advises the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Health and Human Services. Nowak co-authored a paper about vaccination acceptance that was published by the New England Journal of Medicine in September 2020.

His most recent research, published in February, indicated that more U.S. adults appear to have received an influenza vaccination this flu season than ever before.

Nowak also participates in the College’s Crisis Communication Think Tank and recently co-edited a book on the subject, “Advancing Crisis Communication Effectiveness.”

“I look forward to working with the College’s faculty, staff, and graduate students on further strengthening our programs, scholarship and research efforts,” Nowak said. “I plan to continue the efforts to expand awareness of the faculty’s research and communication expertise across and beyond the campus.”

Prior to rejoining the Grady faculty in January 2013, Nowak worked 14 years at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He spent six years as director of media relations at CDC and six years as communications director for CDC’s National Immunization Program. He has experience in managing and implementing health and risk communications programs, media relations, health information campaigns and social marketing. Prior to joining CDC in January 1999, Nowak taught at Grady College for ten years.

Government and non-government public health agencies frequently seek out Nowak’s vast experience and in 2014, he assisted the Task Force for Global Health in its efforts to develop and implement a communication strategy for a worldwide effort related to polio eradication.  More recently, Nowak was a visiting communications scientist with the Department Health and Human Services’ National Vaccine Program Office (NVPO), working on research projects involving vaccination hesitancy, confidence and acceptance.

Nowak earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and his Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

In his new role, Nowak will direct the college’s research efforts, as well as its graduate program, which includes eight Master of Arts programs and its ranked Ph.D. program.

Springston, who ably directed graduate studies at the college for 15 years, will oversee the college’s recent MFA offerings including the low-residency MFA in Narrative Media Writing and the new MFA in Film, Television and Digital Media.

Black History Month Alumni Spotlight: Christopher A. Daniel (MA ’07)

Editor’s Note: This is one in a series of spotlights highlighting the work of some of our alumni in celebration of Black History Month. Please watch for more profiles in the weeks to come.

Christopher Daniel works as a journalist and instructor of multimedia and digital journalism in the Department of Mass Media Arts at Clark Atlanta University. He enjoys writing about popular music and culture, civil rights and education. He has freelanced for publications including HuffPost, The Hip Hop Enquirer, Atlanta Magazine and CBS News, and his work has been recognized by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation and NABJ.

What does Black History Month mean to you?

Black History Month gives the country and even the world an opportunity to really celebrate the contributions and the blood and the sweat that Black people have given to this nation, and to the world at large. It’s a moment for us to really look into all the different areas and genres in which Black people have made certain strides, whether it’s in the arts or in the sciences or in education or entertainment. So I think it is an interesting time for us to be able to celebrate our history, but it’s also just a moment for us to dig deep and try to find those narratives that we haven’t heard before and those moments that can enlighten us and shine a really bright light on things that improve our human condition. Black History Month is a combination of us celebrating the contributions to our nation and just our culture, but also really digging deep to find the stories that we haven’t heard.

Explain a challenge that you had to overcome in your professional career.

I think one of the biggest challenges that I’ve overcome specifically as a Black journalist is getting editors to understand certain things culturally that need to be articulated in writing. Especially over the last few years, now we’re getting to a point where things have to be a little bit more transparent and things have to be a little bit more reflective of the communities that we serve. A great deal of what I’ve spent a lot of my career doing is educating people and educating editors on the ways in which Black communities live. Why does a certain song make sense, or if we go to the barber shop, what sort of resonance does the barber shop have on Black men and us being able to relate to one another? I’ve written about our culinary traditions and our literary canons and what they mean to the larger conversations about uplifting humanity or raising awareness. 

One of the biggest gifts that I’ve been given — because I don’t really look at it as a challenge, I look at it as a gift — is being able to expose people to the ways in which they need to understand humanity better and to really do their jobs better. When we tell stories about underserved or marginalized groups, I bring in a strong sense of pride and humanity to those narratives and really show people that the way in which they perceive Black people and Brown people is not the way the nation sees it. And it’s been a lot of fun doing those stories and really being the voice for my community.

What classes at Grady College did the most to prepare you for your career?

The first time I had a 9000 level class, there were maybe four people, and I was the only Black student and I was the only master’s student in the class. We took this class in the Peabody office, so you look around and you see all these posters of “MTV Unplugged” and “The Simpsons” and “Roots.” When I was in that class, I did a presentation on “The Boondocks,” which was at the time a big show and it was one of my favorite shows on TV. Everyone in that class was a white Ph.D. student, and even the instructor, Horace Newcomb, had no clue what I was doing. I just remember getting all of these questions from Newcomb and I had no clue why I was getting interrogated like that. But literally, probably a week or two weeks after this presentation, I was on MySpace, and I will never forget this. Aaron McGruder, who created that show and the comic strip, was on his MySpace page and posted a quote that said “Hot damn, I just won a Peabody Award.” That showed me the power of the influence that I had and kind of what my voice was meant to do.

Daniel was inspired by Charlayne Hunter-Gault to attend Grady College for his master’s degree.

I had what I call the holy trinity in Grady. This was Dwight Brooks, Andy Kavoori and Nate Kohn; those three were my thesis committee members, and Brooks was my thesis chair. And of course, my thesis was on southern hip hop music through the prism of hip hop publications. Doing something at the time that really wasn’t heavy in higher education and now you’re seeing classes on hip hop, on Outkast or on southern hip hop music in general, and using autobiographies as textbooks now. So to be able to come, you know, maybe 13-14 years later and seeing how we’ve really advanced in terms of the sort of material that we’re using in the conversations that we have. That really lets me know that those two years that I spent at Grady College was a monumental time to really move that needle, and doing this 60 years after Charlayne Hunter-Gault integrated Grady and the University of Georgia, really to me, is a big deal, and that’s what makes me proud to talk about this. The one person that helped to integrate and desegregate that program is someone who inspired and motivated me to make the decision that I made to go to Grady.

What does the recent movement to continue the fight for racial justice mean to you personally and professionally?

I feel as though what has to happen going forward so it’s not performative, that it is genuine, is you have to make sure that students are having these conversations in the media courses that they take. And yes, it’s going to be uncomfortable, but imagine how uncomfortable it is being in the newsroom or going in the community and having to write when there is a protest or someone died or something crazy happened that made national news. Literally turning your classes into incubators and making those spaces where you can have conversations about race and have conversations about sexism, so that once there is a moment where they are assigned to do those stories in the future, they know best practices and how to approach those topics so they’re not uncomfortable with it. I think we have to really do a better job at turning our educational spaces into practices, and optimizing opportunities so that when these larger issues come up in the future because those editors and those writers who are having these problems now, they were students too at some point. We just have to do a better job at really having those hard dialogues and creating tough love out of that so that things can be better.

It’s going to take a village for us to really do those sorts of things voluntarily so that we can make the necessary change that has to happen. But if you want to be a journalist especially, it does start with doing the homework. I would like to think that people that want to do those stories and win Pulitzers and win Peabodys and more awards down the line, that they are taking upon themselves the initiative to do the legwork on the ground as students so that they can morph and matriculate into those spaces where they are the productive citizens doing the necessary work. Even when things are quiet, you still have to be very vocal about what needs improvement because things won’t change if you won’t voice it and put it in people’s faces. You’re doing something that helps the larger community change the nature of what’s going on. 

How has your field of study changed since you were a Grady student?

When we were in school, Facebook was the new thing. And that’s the platform that everybody was using to promote events on campus. If people had potlucks on the weekend, that’s what they used; somebody had a birthday party, that’s what they used. I honestly don’t think people figured out at the time that you can literally use that to disseminate news. Now when you go online, Twitter is the number one way that a lot of young people get their news. You know people have breaking news on TikTok, they’re breaking news on Clubhouse and panels and things of that nature, so the way that social media and digital media have really become virtual news hubs. Now social media is the wire service. 

Another way the industry has changed is we have more spaces where we’re getting opportunities. In those days, internships created pipelines for how students would get their way into ESPN, Bloomberg, and the PR agencies and CNN.  A number of opportunities that I’ve received as a journalist have been because someone sees a tweet. It’s totally leveling the playing field so that we don’t have to look to the more arcane old school ways. It’s actually keeping things a little bit cooler and making things a little bit more laid back to where we don’t have to be so formal all the time, which I think is really a good deal. You’re allowing people who really have good voices and have the education to not necessarily be so uptight about getting their voice out to the world. It’s allowing us to be who we are, and I think that’s probably the biggest blessing that’s changed in time since I’ve been in school. We just have to be very diligent about making sure that when we get students in those moments where they can sell themselves on those platforms, they know that the stuff that they’re putting out there needs to have a certain look to it so they can get the moment in the sun that they’re looking for.

Fall 2019 graduates challenged to be informed and active in communities

Graduates Call the Dawgs prior to convocation.

Pictures from the Fall 2019 Grady Convocation can be viewed on the UGA Grady Flickr gallery:

Fall 2019 convocation graduates:

Video of convocation:

Grady College graduates were celebrated and challenged to lead in their respective fields at the Fall 2019 Convocation ceremonies on December 12, 2019, at the Hugh Hodgson Performing Arts Center. More than 160 students graduated from Grady College this semester, many of whom participated in convocation.

Graduate students eligible for graduation included 25 MFA, Emerging Media and master’s in public relations students. Undergraduates who were recognized included 24 students with an advertising degree, 19 with a degree in public relations, 52 from the journalism program and 40 from entertainment and media studies.

Dean Charles Davis presided over the ceremony, giving an overview of Grady’s accomplishments this past year and praising students for their hard work, passion and academic excellence.

Randy Travis (ABJ ’82), investigative reporter for Fox 5 Atlanta and a recent Peabody Award winner, addressed graduates with a talk focusing on fulfilling the responsibility to be informed and challenge government leaders.

“This is a crucial time for journalism,” Travis said. “Rise to the occasion and do what you have been taught here. You have got the tools now and I know you have the confidence.”

Travis encouraged graduates to consume news from respected sources every day.

“Be an ambassador for news,” Travis said. “That means being informed.”

The distinguished senior speaker, a student chosen based on an audition among the graduates for the honor, was Peyton Lewis, a journalism major. She focused her remarks on the relationships she built at Grady College.

“It was so nice to know that I would always have someone in my corner to mentor me and grow me,” Lewis said. “I think we should all strive to be that person for someone else.”

Michael Gray (ABJ ’11), a member of the Grady Society Alumni Board,  concluded the platform of speakers by welcoming the students to the alumni ranks of the college and encouraging new alumni to stay involved through mentoring, coming to alumni receptions to meet current students and supporting Grady Giving Day.

“Your time here has afforded you the opportunity to build relationships that will be with you forever if you take the time to stay in touch,” Gray said.

 

Compilation video produced by Dayne Young

 

Spring 2019 graduates encouraged to write own narrative at Grady College Convocation

Pictures from the Spring 2019 Grady Convocation can be viewed on the UGAGrady Flickr galleries:

Spring 2019 convocation candids

Spring 2019 convocation graduates:

Spring 2019 convocation ceremony

Nearly 500 undergraduate and graduate students were eligible for graduation from Grady College this semester, many of whom were recognized at the Spring 2019 Convocation ceremony on May 8, 2019, at the Classic Center.

Twenty-six graduate students graduated from Grady College, including two Ph.D. graduates. The approximate number of undergraduates who were recognized included 140 students with an advertising degree, 145 with a degree in public relations, 110 from the journalism program and 75 from the entertainment and media studies department.

Dean Charles Davis presided over the ceremony, providing an overview of Grady’s accomplishments this past year and commending the students for their hard work, passion and academic excellence.

Jonathan Wegman, charge to candidates, at Grady College Convocation, Spring 2019. Video: Jim Black and Dayne Young

Jonathan Wegman (ABJ ’04), the head of customer experience and strategy at Twitter, delivered the convocation keynote address and charged candidates to have courage to rewrite rules, pivot to new strategies and write their own personal narrative.

“When you make a mistake or your role changes, know that you hold the pen,” Wegman said. “You can write your own narrative. I am excited for this group to rewrite what is next.”

Lauren Diaz, distinguished senior speaker, at Grady College Convocation, Spring 2019. Video: Jim Black and Dayne Young
The distinguished senior speaker, a student chosen based on an audition among the graduates for the spot, was Lauren Diaz, a journalism major with a minor in sociology. She spoke on the journey her and her fellow students have had at Grady, and how it aligns them for next adventures.

“We are destined to succeed,” Diaz said. “We have each other. Most importantly, we have the help of our advisors, professors and mentors who saw our potential from the start.”

Lauren Izzo (ABJ ’05, MA ’07), vice-chair of the Grady Society Alumni Board, concluded the platform of speakers by welcoming the students to the alumni ranks of the college.

“You never know where your Grady connections will lead you,” Izzo said.

View the Spring 2019 Grady Convocation in its entirety on the Grady College Facebook Page.

Video recap of Grady College Convocation, Spring 2019. Video: Dayne Young