Juan Meng named Department of Advertising and Public Relations Head

Juan Meng, an associate professor of public relations and founder and director of the Choose China Study Abroad program, has been tapped to direct the Department of Advertising and Public Relations at Grady College effective August 1, 2022.

Current department head, Bryan Reber, will retire effective August 1, 2022.

“Dr. Meng adds to the long line of distinguished faculty who have stepped up to lead AdPR over the decades,” said Charles N. Davis, dean of Grady College. “She possesses the leadership skills needed for this demanding position, and she’s earned the role through years of strong service to the college. I’m so excited to work with her.”

Meng joined the AdPR faculty in 2012 and is an affiliate graduate faculty member, serving as the founder and advisor of the UGA/SHNU cooperative education 3+1+1 degree program, which recruits undergraduate students of Shanghai Normal University in China to complete their undergraduate and graduate degrees at UGA. Meng’s teaching focus includes public relations foundations, public relations campaigns, PR ethics, diversity and leadership, and global PR. Her research specialization includes public relations leadership, leadership development, diversity and leadership in PR, measurement in PR, and global communication.

Meng has published more than 70 refereed journal articles, scholarly book chapters and research reports on leadership-related topics. She is co-editor of the book, “Public Relations Leaders as Sensemakers: A Global Study of Leadership in Public Relations and Communication Management,” published by Routledge in 2014. Her most recent scholarly book, “PR Women with Influence: Breaking through the Ethical and Leadership Challenges” (Peter Lang, 2021), is the Volume 6 of the AEJMC-Peter Lang Scholarsourcing Series. Meng has presented her research at various panels, workshops, webinars, podcasts, and symposiums nationally and internationally.

Meng serves on the editorial advisory board for six leading scholarly journals in the field of public relations and communication management, including Journal of Public Relations Research and Public Relations Review, among others. She was recently named to the advisory board of PR Daily. Meng was recently tapped to serve as an inaugural member of the Institute of Public Relations new initiative called IPR ELEVATE, a group of PR leaders dedicated to advancing the research-focused mission in the industry. She currently also serves as the Research Co-Chair on the executive leadership committee of the Educators Academy at Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).

Meng serves on the national advisory board of The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations at the University of Alabama. She has collaborated with The Plank Center over the past ten years on several signature research projects, including the largest global study of PR leadership, Millennial Communication Professionals in the Workplace, the biennial Report Card on PR Leaders and the biennial North American Communication Monitor.

She is a graduate of the UGA Women’s Leadership Fellows program, the Office of Service-Learning Fellows program and UGA Teaching Academy Fellows program.

Meng earned Ph.D. and Master of Science degrees from the University of Alabama; a Master of Arts degree from Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio; and a Bachelor of Science degree from Fudan University in Shanghai, China.


“I am honored and thankful for this opportunity. I look forward to working more closely with our talented students, dedicated colleagues, passionate alumni, and other brilliant leaders in the field to continue upholding AdPR’s legacy of excellence in education, research and service.” — Juan Meng

AdPR is the largest department at Grady College and graduated more than 200 advertising and public relations students this past Spring 2022. The department, one of the most prolific in terms of research productivity and cited articles according to a 2019 study, houses several certificate programs, labs and key programs within the College including the Crisis Communication Coalition, the student-run agency Talking Dog and the Center for Health and Risk Communication.

Incivil replies to ‘The Squad’ nearly doubled after Trump tweet, researchers find

After Trump’s 2019 tweet telling four congresswomen, known as “The Squad,” to “go back” to their home countries, the number of incivil replies to tweets made by the congresswomen almost doubled, new research finds. 

Despite all four congresswomen Reps. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ayanna Pressley of Massachusetts — being U.S. citizens, many of the remarks echoed Trump’s sentiment that the congresswomen don’t belong holding office in the United States. In particular, two types of incivility towards the congresswomen increased significantly after Trump’s tweet — the use of stereotypes and threats to individual rights. 

According to the researchers, these four women “represent the racial, gender and religious minority in the United States” and have been the target of a large amount of incivility online. This research provides insight into incivility on Twitter, particularly when it is directed towards members of minority groups. 

“Conceptually, we were trying to figure out what incivility is,” said Itai Himelboim, a co-author of the study and the Thomas C. Dowden Professor of Media Analytics at Grady College. “Part of it is vulgarity, name calling and so on, but another element is a threat to one’s rights and democracy as a whole.”

To conduct their study, the researchers collected all replies to all tweets made by the four congresswomen from June 1, 2019, to August 31, 2019 six weeks before and six weeks after Trump’s July 14 tweet.

Out of the total 102,815 replies to the congresswomen’s tweets during the time period, a sample of 20,563 were coded for 14 variables, including tones and popular topics such as immigration, Muslim ban, abortion, LGBTQ rights and more. 

The researchers determined that just under two-thirds of all replies during the 12-week time period included at least one type of incivility. The findings also showed that, after Trump’s comments, the total number of replies to the congresswomen’s tweets jumped by roughly 20 percent. 

Overall, the most common type of incivility used against The Squad was “name calling,” identified as using disparaging remarks, such as “idiot” or “stupid.” Second was “stereotype,” which was identified as associating an individual with a group and using terms, such as “Muslim,” in a derogatory manner. Third was “threats to individual rights,” which is implying someone should not have rights, such as freedom of speech. Fourth was “vulgarity,” which is the use of swear words. 

Less frequent types of incivility included “aspiration,” which is making disparaging remarks about a policy, such as immigration, “pejorative wording,” which is using disparaging words about how someone is communicating, and “threats to democracy,” which is stating or implying a threat to the democratic method of governance as an ideal or system, such as advocating an overthrow of the government. 

“We need to understand that it is more than being vulgar and calling names not that there is justification for that but it comes down also to threatening individual rights and threats to democracy,” said Himelboim.

The study, titled “‘You are a disgrace and traitor to our country’: incivility against ‘The Squad’,” was published in the journal Internet Research.

Additional authors include recent Grady Ph.D. graduate Bryan Trude (PhD ’22), Kate Keib (PhD ‘17), associate provost of non-traditional programs and an assistant professor of communication studies at Oglethorpe University, Matthew Binford (PhD ‘21), assistant professor of practice at Western Carolina University, Porismita Borah, an associate professor in the College of Communication at Washington State University, and Bimbisar Irom, an assistant professor in the College of Communication at Washington State University. 

7 Grady students recognized as 2022 Multicultural Advertising Intern Program fellows

Seven Grady College students have been selected by the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) Foundation to participate as fellows in the 2022 Multicultural Advertising Intern Program (MAIP).

These students, along with a group of over 200 of their peers from colleges and universities across the country, are engaging in a 22-week fellowship program that prepares them with the skills and connections they need to build a foundation in the industry. 

“Being selected as a MAIP fellow has been the highlight of my advertising journey thus far,” said Smera Dhal, a third-year Advertising major. “This program emphasizes the unique experiences that shape multicultural students and the significance of their representation in the advertising world.” 

In the spring, MAIP fellows participate in a 12-week virtual training series on topics within the industry, which is geared to prepare them for their 10-week paid summer internships with top agencies across the United States. 

“I’m looking forward to spending the summer gaining hands-on experience with real clients!” said Priya Desai, a fourth-year Advertising major. “I’m especially grateful to the 4A’s Foundation for creating a program that values my diverse experience and champions equity and inclusion throughout the industry.”

Throughout the program, fellows also have the opportunity to learn from a team of over 200 volunteer coaches and participate in advertising workshops and panels. The fellowships are available in over 16 disciplines, including social strategy, copywriting, design, public relations, communications planning and many more. 

“I feel lucky to have found an internship that isn’t just another desk job,” said Midori Jenkins, a second-year Entertainment and Media Studies major. “Additionally, I cannot wait to move to Los Angeles for the summer and will be using this time to maximize networking opportunities and explore the city.”

Since it started in 1973, MAIP has grown a vast and diverse alumni network of more than 4,100 who have come from more than 80 colleges and universities across the United States. Nearly 80 percent of MAIP’s participants are female, and 100 percent are members of minority groups. 

“I am honored to be a MAIP fellow and to contribute to the diversification of predominantly white spaces,” said Dhal. “I hope to see a future where more Indian girls can wholeheartedly and unapologetically pursue their creativity.”

The seven Grady students participating in the program are Priya Desai (SSCG Media Group), Smera Dhal (Digitas Boston), Melissa Flores (Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners), Madison Greer (MSL Group), Midori Jenkins (Ignition Creative), Jocelyn Peña (Sony Music Group) and Heaven Robinson (Saatchi & Saatchi).

Grady researchers explore the effectiveness of humor in STD advertising

For decades, companies, government systems and other organizations have incorporated humor into their advertisements as a way to grab consumers’ attention and help them retain information. 

It’s clear that humor is a powerful tool when advertising, for example, chips and beer during the Super Bowl. But could it be effective when presenting information about stigma-associated health issues, such as human papillomavirus (HPV)? 

That’s the primary question Hye Jin Yoon, an associate professor in the Department of Advertising and Public Relations at Grady College, set out to answer through her most recent research. Yoon worked with Eunjin (Anna) Kim, an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Southern California, and Grady Ph.D. student Sung In Choi, to conduct the research. 

“I wanted to see how humor can help communicate health information, especially health information that people are not very comfortable communicating or talking about,” said Yoon. 

As noted in the research paper, HPV is the most common sexually transmitted disease. It is known to infect almost all sexually active adults at some point in their lives, causing health problems such as genital warts and cervical cancer. However, despite how common the disease is, there is still a significant lack of public knowledge about HPV, the researchers explained in their paper. 

“In 2022, it has shifted a bit for sure, but it is still the case that people hear HPV and don’t necessarily know that it is a sexually transmitted disease,” said Yoon. 

Therefore, there is a clear need for health communicators to develop ways to effectively educate people about HPV prevention and treatment methods. 

While conducting their research, Yoon and her team showed HPV advertisements, some that incorporated humor and others that did not, to a diverse group of more than 150 individuals. Ultimately, they determined that, among those who did not know much about the disease, incorporating humor, without including information about HPV being an STD, proved to be effective in creating greater attention and more positive responses. 

However, when information stating that HPV is an STD was brought into the ads, the researchers found that the ads without humor proved to be more effective for those with low HPV knowledge. To those who already knew a lot about HPV, incorporating humor had no impact on the effectiveness of the ads. 

“It is likely the case that once you tell them it is an STD, they have to focus on that information,” explained Yoon. “Humor takes up our cognitive space in order to process it. You have to process humor to find it funny.”

Yoon explained that the takeaway from this research is that when advertising HPV prevention and treatment methods to people who don’t know too much about the disease, it is best to use humor without explicitly mentioning that HPV is an STD. However, if HPV advertisers do decide to give explicit STD information in their ads, it is better to not use humor. 

The study, “Will Humor Increase the Effectiveness of Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Advertising? Exploring the Role of Humor, STD Information, and Knowledge,” was published in the March 2022 edition of the Journal of Marketing Communications.

New book ‘Social Media and Crisis Communication’ (2nd edition) bridges gap between theory and practice

Yan Jin, the Georgia Athletic Association Professor and a professor of public relations at Grady College, has released a second edition of her book “Social Media and Crisis Communication.”

Co-edited by Lucinda Austin, an associate professor and the Ph.D. program director at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill’s Hussman School of Journalism and Media, the book integrates theory, research and application to orient readers to the latest thinking about the role of social media in the field. 

“This book offers the most updated research insights in the field of social media and crisis communication,” explained Jin. 

 It features chapters written by dozens of researchers and professionals from around the world, including many Grady College faculty members, graduate students and alumni. 

“For this edition, we have a really strong UGA presence,” said Jin. 

Jonathan Peters, an associate professor of journalism, Bryan Reber, the C. Richard Yarbrough Professor in Crisis Communication Leadership and Joseph Watson, Jr.,  the Carolyn Caudell Tieger Professor of Public Affairs Communications, Advertising and Public Relations, all contributed to the book. So did Grady graduate students Marilyn Broggi, W. Scott Guthrie, Xuerong Lu and Taylor Voges and alumni LaShonda Eaddy (PhD ’17), Yen-I Lee (PhD ’17) and Logan White (MA ’21). 

The mission of the book, which Jin describes as one of a kind, is to bridge the gap between theory and practice. The book takes a deep look at specific crisis arenas, including health, corporate, nonprofit, religious, political and disaster, as well as emerging social media platforms and newer technology. It provides a fresh view of the role of visual communication in social media and a more global review of social media and crisis communication literature. 

“We want to connect research and practice,” said Jin. “You learn theory and insights, but also there are tangible cases and ongoing dialogues from practitioners shining light on what is important for the industry.” 

With an emphasis on ethics and global perspective, a brief overview of social media research in crisis communication and case studies for each area of application, the lessons in the book, Jin explained, are useful for scholars, advanced students and practitioners who wish to stay on the edge of research. It will appeal to those who are in public relations, strategic communications, government and NGO communications, corporate communications and emergency and disaster response, among others. 

The first edition of “Social Media and Crisis Communication” was published in 2017. Austin served as the lead editor of the first edition, while Jin co-edited the book. 

UGA and UMD researchers partner to explore strategies for combatting misinformation during health crises

Yan Jin and Brooke Fisher Liu lead FDA sponsored research to gather evidence to guide future messaging.

In the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic, researchers at the University of Maryland (UMD) and the University of Georgia (UGA) are collaborating with researchers at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER) Office of Communications to develop and test messaging strategies that can help overcome misinformation that arises during public health emergencies.

Brooke Fisher Liu, professor in UMD’s Department of Communication, and Yan Jin, professor of public relations and Georgia Athletic Association Professor at UGA’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, will develop and test message strategies concerning vital health information that can help keep people safe.

“Past research found a clear link between COVID-19 misinformation exposure and vaccine hesitancy,” said Liu, the project’s principal investigator. “Research also connects misinformation exposure to lower compliance with government health and safety guidance. In short, misinformation is just as great of a threat to public health as the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease, but our knowledge is limited on how to combat misinformation.”

Through two large-scale experiments on how messages containing misinformation and various types of responses are interpreted by U.S. adults, the researchers will be among the first to explore how public health misinformation can be corrected through strategic risk communication and what methods work best in thwarting misinformation.

“This project exemplifies the importance and promising future for more collaborative risk and crisis communication research across universities and with the government to provide theory-driven, evidenced-based insights to protect public health and safety,” said Jin, the project’s co-principal investigator.

The FDA is investing nearly $225,000 to fund the three-year project, which began in October 2021. The research team will  recommend best practices for how public health agencies can combat health misinformation for the COVID-19 pandemic and future threats.

The team defines misinformation as a claim of fact that is false due to a lack of scientific evidence or conflicting scientific evidence. The researchers will conduct online experiments gathering information on how adults respond to medical and health misinformation. The research team will also provide a targeted deep-dive analysis of previous research to identify best communication practices that promote safety during public health crises.

Liu and Jin are two of the leading risk and crisis communication scholars in the world. Their collaborative work dates back to 2001, when they both studied in the graduate program at the Missouri School of Journalism. They are joined by Tori McDermott, graduate research assistant from the UMD, and Xuerong Lu, graduate research assistant from the UGA.

“It is a great opportunity for me, as a young scholar in crisis communication, to collaborate with Dr. Liu and Dr. Jin to significantly advance research and practice in misinformation management,” said Lu.

The research findings will provide an opportunity to address real-time challenges, and the lessons learned from them, to guide future leadership decisions in health communication. The mission behind this research is to equip authorities with communication to respond to misinformation in a way that protects public health and safety.

“As an emerging scholar, I am so grateful to work on a project of this magnitude not only to help mitigate the negative effects of infodemics, but also to learn from Dr. Liu and Dr. Jin how scholarship can inform and change practice and policy to better society,” said McDermott.

 

Hooper & Sanford podcast: Kendell Williams (AB ’17)

Kendell Williams (AB ’17) has competed in two Olympic Games (2016 in Rio de Janeiro and 2020 in Tokyo). She graduated with her undergraduate degree in advertising and is currently pursuing her Master’s degree while also training for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris. In this episode, learn more about Williams’ decorated track and field career, her plans after athletics, and why returning to Grady College for her Master’s degree was a priority. Williams joins Dayne Young (ABJ ’11) to share her story.

Listen to this episode on Apple PodcastsYou can also hear it on Spotify. Learn more about Grady College podcasts here. 

Department of Advertising and Public Relations to celebrate 7th annual AdPR Week

Grady College’s Department of Advertising and Public Relations will celebrate its seventh annual week-long celebration of National AdPR Week at University of Georgia, September 27 – October 1. 

The week will feature a lineup of presentations by alumni and professional development opportunities facilitated by industry leaders. AdPR is also featuring its second annual Calling All Dawgs AdPR Giving Day campaign, asking alumni and friends of the Department to contribute to the AdPR Excellence Fund. The goal is to reach $6,500 in gifts within 24 hours on Monday, September 27. Many AdPR students rely upon scholarship support to make the most of their education. This AdPR Giving Day, gifts will tackle this issue head on by helping to fully endow a permanent scholarship for AdPR students. Once endowed, the scholarship will be awarded every year during AdPR Week.

 “I’m excited about the programming that is in place for our seventh annual AdPR Week. The week’s events are dedicated to giving our community an opportunity to network and learn from professionals and alumni.  Each year is about celebrating the advertising and public relations professions while providing a great opportunity for students to network and learn from industry leaders,” said ADPR Department Head Bryan Reber. 

Alumnus Marc Cassimus (ABJ ‘11) will be on campus on Tuesday, September 28 to talk to students about “Navigating Your Career to Twitter”. Cassimus started in the agency world as a TV Media Buyer for Initiative and MEC, then transitioned into the digital sales space as an Account Manager at YuMe (now Tremor). He then moved into the social media space by going to Twitter where he currently manages the Advertising Performance Academy, focused on hiring external talent to ultimately develop into Account Managers in Twitter’s sales organization.  

Two alumni from Google, Kasaye Wilson (ABJ ‘17) Destiny Smith (ABJ ‘17), will continue the technology conversation with a panel discussion, “Google X Grady: AMA (Ask Me Anything)” where students will learn what it takes to succeed in big tech and ask anything about life at Google. Kasaye Wilson is a Global Sales Specialist and Destiny Wilson is an Account Strategist.

“Learning from our alumni who are professionals in the technology field provides a great opportunity to our students as they explore career options.  We’re excited about the programming that’s planned,” said Reber.  

Grady College’s bi-annual Dawgs with the Dean is always a highlight where Dean Davis dons his apron and provides lunch and entertainment to students, faculty and staff on the College Lawn. It is a tradition everyone looks forward to celebrating during AdPR Week.

The Department of Advertising and Public Relations remains one of the top programs in the country and has award-winning teaching and research faculty and highly successful alumni who are influencing the world of advertising and public relations by applying the knowledge they gained from a top-notch education at UGA. 

AdPR pride will be shared on social media with the hashtag #AdPRide. 

The schedule of events is as follows:

PhD student Xuerong Lu wins 2021 IPR-Ketchum Don Bartholomew Award for Excellence in Public Relations Research

Public relations PhD student Xuerong Lu was recently announced as the winner of the 2021 IPR-Ketchum Don Bartholomew Award for Excellence in Public Relations Research. The award honors the work of a public relations scholar and helps them connect their research to public relations practice in the professional setting.

“I was on cloud nine for several hours,” Lu said. “I called my parents who were in China and proudly told them I won it.”

Lu’s research focus is crisis communication. Specifically, she examines how organizations communicate crises to audiences on social media when conflicting information exists.

The award links Lu to a legacy of renounced public relations scholars, including two members of the Grady College faculty. María Len-Ríos, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, won the same award in 2000 and Bryan Reber, Advertising and Public Relations Department Head, won it in 1999.

“I’m glad that Ketchum continues to support this award,” Reber said. “I received it more than 20 years ago and it’s exciting to have one of our own earn the honor and experience of the Bartholomew Award. I’m glad to have Xuerong in the fraternity of winners of this award.”

“It’s a huge inspiration for me,” said Lu. “Dr. Reber and Dr. Len-Ríos are big names in the PR field. It was my dream to have my name listed with their name somewhere one day.”

In her research, Lu worked with Yan Jin, AdPR Assistant Department Head, on a study published by Public Relations Review that focused on how information is vetted when be used to manage crisis communication. Jin, who also serves as Lu’s faculty advisor and dissertation chair, also guided Lu through the IPR-Ketchum Award application process.

“Xuerong’s passion for advancing communication theory and practice via social and behavioral scientific research is remarkable,” Jin said. “As doctoral student, Xuerong has published in some of the top journals in our field and received external research funding, with extensive experience of leading projects and collaborating with scholars and practitioners in the U.S. and worldwide. She is bright, diligent, optimistic, creative and perseverant.”

Lu says the experience with a leading global public relations agency gives her greater perspective on the field of public relations.

“Such experience really opened my eyes to the PR industry, which is also really helpful to my own PR research,” Lu said. “It helps me to rethink “so what” questions in a deeper and wider manner when doing my own research.”

Lu plans to pursue a faculty position at a research university to continue her passion and contributions to scholarly work in public relations and crisis communication.

You can learn more about the Bartholomew Award and see the full list of previous winners at their website.

High school students learn, hone skills at virtual Summer Media Academy

Thirty-four high school students from around the country studied media and completed specialized portfolio projects during the virtual 2021 Summer Media Academy at the University of Georgia.

The program, a partnership between the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication and UGA Summer Academy, was divided into three weeks by subject: Journalism, June 14-18; Advertising and Public Relations, June 21-25; and Entertainment and Media Studies, June 28-July 2.

Hands-on learning was a focus of the Academy. Journalism participants wrote articles, made photo essays or produced podcasts for The Post-Covid Post digital publication. Participants in the ADPR Academy collaborated as a group to craft a campaign for a nonprofit organization. EMST participants wrote scripts for short films or designed a movie poster.  A showcase of their work is available at summermediaacademy.wordpress.com.

“This camp has allowed me to explore many different opportunities, and has also strengthened my initial skills,” said ADPR participant Jaidyn Mosby. “This organized camp helped me engage in public speaking and allowed me to show off my leadership qualities. I am extremely grateful for the educational opportunity that this camp provided me.”

Each course was designed and led by the following faculty and staff: Laurena Bernabo, assistant professor, EMST; Tom Cullen (MA ‘18, MFA ‘21), lecturer, ADPR; and Charlotte Norsworthy (AB ‘19, MA ‘20), instructor, journalism. Recent graduate Emily Minnick (AB ‘21) co-taught the EMST camp and Stephanie Moreno (ABJ ‘06, MA ‘20), scholastic outreach coordinator, assisted with all of the camps.

ADPR participants researched a client, the Georgia Innocence Project, and crafted a mini campaign during the 2021 virtual ADPR Summer Academy.

Alumni guest speakers and other professionals also shared advice and offered participants glimpses into the range of careers available in the industry.

Journalism guest speaker Tori McElhaney (AB ‘18), who covers the Atlanta Falcons for The Athletic, advised participants to gain skills in many areas and across platforms. “Being able to be multifaceted in your skill set is so important because you do so many different things and you are on so many different platforms,” she said. “There really is something for everyone.”

A conceptual design for the upcoming movie Blade features a black and smokey background with the Marvel Studios red and black logo at the top. The title Blade is in an angular, silver font. The starring actor’s name, Mahershala Ali, is listed in an outlined white font on the left. An image of the actor appears in the middle. The premiere date of “Coming in 2023” is included in the white outlined font on the right side of the poster.
This conceptual movie poster was designed by EMST participant Micah Robinson.

Other journalism speakers included Rebecca Burns, publisher of the Red and Black; Hillary Davis, New Voices advocacy and campaign organizer, Student Press Law Center; Carlo Finlay, assistant director of the Carmical Sports Media Institute; Clare Norins, director of the UGA First Amendment Law Clinic; Kelsey Russo (AB ‘19), Cleveland Cavaliers beat writer at The Athletic; and Becca Wright (AB ‘19), CNN photo editor and freelancer.

Speaking to the ADPR participants, Angela Alfano (ABJ ‘10), senior director of corporate communications at Major League Soccer, emphasized the importance of networking.

“As you’re building your career, getting into college and doing your first internships and classes, it’s never too early to create what I like to call your own executive team,” she said. “Building your executive team is so important and crucial to your personal success. What has really been so instrumental in part of my career is having a ton of mentors.”

This logo for the news website publication features a white square with a dark blue border. The words “The Post-Covid Post” are left-justified in a dark blue sans serif font with Summer 2021 below also in dark blue.
This logo for The Post-Covid Post news website was designed with input from the journalism camp participants.

Alfano continued: “The diversity of thought and the diverse backgrounds is something so important to have in mentors…to advise your career and your transition from high school as a free agent to college as a free agent to landing that first job.”

Additional ADPR speakers included Megan Bush and Anna Kate Newall (AB ‘20) of Marketwake; Anne Noland (ABJ ‘15), senior director of communications for the Miami Dolphins; Marquan Norris (AB ‘21), brand intern at Edelman; and Dayne Young (ABJ ‘11), public relations specialist at Grady College.

Deja White (ABJ ‘17), digital marketing specialist at WarnerMedia, advised EMST campers to get involved early on in their college years with industry-related activities.

“Try to get into at least one thing that you are passionate about each semester,” she said. “And get into one thing that stretches you a little bit—that’s outside of your comfort zone… take a deep breath and take it one year at a time.”

Other EMST guests were Dugan Bridges (ABJ ‘06), freelance director and producer; Neil Landau, associate professor and professional screenwriter; Booker T. Mattison, assistant professor and professional filmmaker; and Keith Wilson, lecturer and professional cinematographer.

Participants from all camps also had the opportunity to learn more about UGA and Grady College from advisers Helen Mahany and Brittney Minor.

Information about 2022 Summer Media Academy opportunities will be available in late fall at grady.uga.edu/apply/high-school-discovery and www.georgiacenter.uga.edu/youth/summer-academy.