UGA Amazing Student: Kelly Krincek

This story was originally published on UGA Today as part of its Amazing Students series.

Kelly Krincek, a graduating senior majoring in entertainment and media studies from New Jersey, was recently named Student Employee of the Year. Krincek is the student media coordinator at the Office of the Dean of Students. She was recognized for her web and video production skills as well as her “infectious energy, enthusiasm, initiative and joyful spirit.”

Chatham, New Jersey

High school:
Chatham High School

Current employment:
I am the student media coordinator at the Office of the Dean of Students at UGA.

Degree objective:
Entertainment and Media Studies Major

Other degrees:
Film minor, Entrepreneurship Certificate, New Media Certificate and an Arch Ready Certificate.

Expected graduation:
May 2021

Family ties to UGA:
My grandfather’s brother and wife both graduated from UGA.

Top university highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:
My four years at UGA have been some of the most rewarding, fun and crazy in my life. I have met amazing people, learned from incredible faculty, and have grown personally, academically and professionally. One of the clear highlights of my experience here at UGA though has been working as the student media coordinator at the Office of the Dean of Students. I create video content (e.g., student staff spotlights to Orientation videos), photograph campus events, help update/maintain the dean’s office website, and assist with crafting newsletters to freshman students. This position has allowed me to form a deeper connection with UGA and become more involved with campus events, including Gettin’ Down with Dean, Dogs for Dawgs, and countless University Union events.

Kelly Krincek holds her Student Employee of the Year plaque

Undergraduate student Kelly Krincek with her Student Employee of the Year plaque. (Photo by Dorothy Kozlowski/UGA)

Honors and Awards:

  • Student Employee of the Year 2021. I was nominated and extremely honored to win this award for my work as student media coordinator.
  • Selected for OneUGA. In an effort to showcase varying UGA experiences, OneUGA featured profiles on select members of the Bulldog community.
  • Presidential Scholar (four semesters)
  • Dean’s List (three semesters)


  • Delta Gamma – As an out-of-state student from New Jersey, I was nervous about moving to a new state and finding my footing. I really had nothing to worry about though because after joining Delta Gamma, I immediately had a support network and an instant family. People always say that the UGA community is huge, but as you become more involved that community is smaller than you realize. Becoming a part of Delta Gamma was the first step in me seeing how connected all UGA students truly are. Through this organization, I have found forever friends and have been able to put my time back into the Athens community through our philanthropy, Service for Sight. From volunteering, to participating in “Do Good” weeks, which are weeks dedicated to Service for Sight events, (e.g., creating “Touch and Feel” books for visually impaired children or writing holiday cards in Braille to visually impaired students around the region), to working at fundraising events (e.g., Anchor Dash and low country boil), I have seen how small actions can have a gigantic impact.
  • The Guide Dog Foundation– I joined my sophomore year and have absolutely loved it. I am a permanent camper, which means I “camp” or look after guide dogs in training while their raisers are unable to or are in a location that does not allow dogs (e.g., guide dogs in training are not allowed in labs on campus). As a camper, you undergo training that teaches you specific commands, rules and etiquette for having a guide dog in training in public places. Being a member of this organization has been an important part of my college journey, as it has led me to yet another wonderful community within Athens and UGA. It has been amazing to see some of the dogs I have worked with go on to become actual guide dogs who are now helping others.

How did you decide to come to UGA?
I chose to attend UGA for a few reasons. As an only child coming from a relatively small town and high school, I wanted to go to a bigger university. I also knew I wanted to major in entertainment and media studies so Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication’s high ranking and its connection to the Peabody Awards were both big draws for me. And I am a huge sports fan so UGA having a D1 program was an added plus. The moment I knew that I would come to UGA though was during an admitted students day visit. I walked from the Arch all the way through campus and up to Milledge Avenue. I was able to see how beautiful the campus was and knew UGA was where I was meant to be.

Kelly Krincek standing in front of the Journalism Building.

Kelly Krincek came to UGA in part for the sports. “I could relay to my family the NY Yankees box score on TV before I could even read a word,” she said. “Obviously, my love of sports started early.” (Photo by Dorothy Kozlowski/UGA)

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be:
The UGA Notre Dame night game during my junior year. It was the 21st of September and the Redcoats played Earth, Wind and Fire’s “September” during half time. We were all just screaming the lyrics and I remember the band all rushing toward the student section at the end. On top of that it was a night game, and they debuted the new red stadium lights, which had the crowd going crazy. The energy in the stadium was insane, for sure one of the most intense and electric games I have been able to attend. Oh and of course, we won … Go Dawgs!

My favorite thing to do on campus is:
Walking through the main sections of campus. No matter what time of year North Campus is stunning, so normally I will get off the bus at an earlier stop than I need to and walk through there. I also love walking around Tate Plaza since there is always something fun going on outside. And of course, stopping by Sanford Stadium is a must, especially with the new access point from Sanford Drive. So much of UGA’s campus is centrically located, which to me shows how connected our community is.

When I have free time, I like to:
Read, hang out with friends, go on day trips, or to try out new restaurants in Athens. Even after four years, I feel like I have barely explored all there is in and around Athens.

My favorite place to study is:
Herty Field. I love studying outside and Herty Field is the perfect spot since it is quiet, peaceful and has gorgeous views. With Herty Fountain as a backdrop, the sound of water is constantly filtering through the area making it a relaxed place to focus and get work done. Grab a bench or lay out a blanket and you’ll be set — 11/10 recommend.

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with:
Ryan Reynolds. Ever since I saw him in “The Proposal,” I have been a huge fan. His social media is hilarious (highly recommend checking out his Twitter/Insta because he’s always cracking jokes or being super sarcastic). He seems like just a happy guy and whatever we ended up doing would be off the wall and kind of crazy but totally fun. And if I’m lucky maybe we’d run into his wife Blake Lively along the way.

If I knew I could not fail, I would:
Move to Los Angeles and pursue a career in Hollywood as an editor or producer.

If money was not a consideration:
I would love to go on an all-inclusive trip across Europe. I have been to Italy with my family and really loved it! It would be amazing to go back and see all the places we missed in Italy, then travel across Europe by train.

Kelly Krincek in front of building

Kelly Krincek knew when she was applying to UGA that she wanted to major in entertainment and media studies. (Photo by Dorothy Kozlowski/UGA)

What jobs or internships have you done? What have you learned?
Currently, I work as the student media coordinator at the Office of the Dean of Students. In the past, I have interned at the National Institute of Corrections as a part-time creative/research intern, where I worked with the executive producer of Live Webinars to prep for multiple 1,000-person webinars. I have also interned at Jaclo, a company that specializes in designer plumbing fixtures, where my role was conducting social listening and website maintenance. In high school, I interned at HTTV, a local TV station and production studio. There, I helped with recording shows and live award shows. Through these experiences, I have learned so much about the creative process, specifically involving preproduction and postproduction. Further, I have learned how to manage my time properly, effectively approach problems/troubleshoot and spearhead projects on my own.

What is your passion and how are you committed to pursuing it?
My passion has always been telling meaningful stories. To me, stories are the ultimate way to connect with others, shift perspectives and make an impact. I have been lucky to work on projects in the past that have allowed me to share other people’s stories. Currently my job as student media coordinator lets me do this daily. In the future, I hope to continue on this path by having a career dedicated to creating and sharing stories.

After graduation, I plan to:
Get a job in New York City, California or Atlanta in creative development or editing.

UGA Amazing Student: Taylor Gerlach

This story was originally published by UGA News as part of its Amazing Student series.

Taylor Gerlach is a senior from Charlotte, North Carolina majoring in journalism and sociology. She’s passionate about using visual storytelling for social justice and making the outdoors a more inclusive and accessible place for everyone. Currently photo editor for The Red & Black, she has interned with Ryan Seacrest Studios in Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina and backpacked the Teton Crest Trail in Grand Teton National Park.


Charlotte, North Carolina

High school: 

Providence Day School

Current employment: 

Photo editor, The Red & Black

Expected graduation: 

May 2021

Degree objective:

 A.B. Journalism and B.A Sociology

Top university highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:

• Georgia Recruitment Team ambassador
• UGA Classic Scholar
• Photo editor at The Red & Black
• Production intern for Seacrest Studios in Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, NC, summer 2019
• Athens PBJ volunteer

Taylor Gerlach is currently photo editor for The Red & Black. (Photo by Peter Frey/UGA)
What has it been like working at The Red & Black? What have you learned?

Working at The Red & Black has been one of the most defining experiences of my time in college. While many newsrooms are high stakes, intimidating environments, The Red & Black has been somewhere where I could grow and learn while engaging in important work with my peers. I’ve learned how to do community journalism well and lead a team of photojournalists in creating necessary content for our community.

Have you done any internships? If so, where and what did you do?

I interned with Seacrest Studios in Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte, North Carolina, during the summer of 2019. There, I joined a team of other future journalists as we all hosted our own live, on-air radio and television programs that were broadcast throughout the children’s hospital each day. I learned how to use my technical skills to cultivate an environment of joy and healing with the patients and their families.

I chose to attend UGA because:

When I visited Athens and UGA as a prospective student in high school, I fell in love with the people and the culture here. I felt welcomed by everyone I met and felt like everyone was truly excited for me to become a freshman and join the UGA community. I like to stay busy and engaged in the broader community of wherever I live, so I was also drawn in by the wealth of activities and opportunities in the Athens community.

How did you pick your major?

I thought of all of the areas I was passionate about and enjoyed. The list was way too long to narrow anything down much. I did change my major a couple of times and added and subtracted other majors and minors as I discovered more about what I truly found purpose doing.

For me, it was about having real experiences in different fields and seeing what clicked. I was flexible and allowed myself to reevaluate frequently and make any changes I needed when I gained new insight or clarity.

Taylor Gerlach was a production intern for Ryan Seacrest Studios in Levine Children’s Hospital in summer 2019. (Submitted photo)
My favorite professor is:

Mark Johnson. I love his teaching philosophy and how engaged with his students he is. He’s someone I know I can rely on for photo-related advice long after graduation.

My favorite things to do on campus are:

I really enjoy being outdoors, so I love spreading a blanket on the North Campus lawn and working on class assignments there. I also love to wander around the Lamar Dodd School of Art and admire all of the student artwork displayed there.

My favorite place to study is:

Before COVID-19, I loved to sit in 1000 Faces with a vanilla oat milk latte and study. Now, the picnic tables in downtown Athens are a new favorite spot.

When I have free time, I like:

Anything outside. I learned how to longboard during Athens’ stay-at-home orders last spring, so I like to take my longboard on the greenway. It’s rare to find me without my camera because I also love to make photos whenever I can.

Fun fact about me:

​I’ve backpacked the Teton Crest Trail in Grand Teton National Park.

The craziest thing I’ve done is:

I booked a cheap flight to Iceland with three friends and zero plans for last spring break. We stayed in a van and had the best time wandering around the beautiful country before our flights home were canceled due to COVID-related international travel bans put in place while we were there.

We booked the next tickets we could find to the U.S. We ended up flying into Newark a day earlier than planned, so we cut our trip a little short to get out just hours before the bans went into effect. We truly just got lucky to find four tickets together and have our friend’s dad willing to drive four hours each way to get us.

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with:

Jimmy Chin, an adventure photographer and climber whose work I am obsessed with.

After Taylor Gerlach graduates in May, she would like to land a job in photography that allows her to be outdoors and tell impactful stories in an ethical and humanizing way. (Photo by Peter Frey/UGA)
If I knew I could not fail, I would:

Climb Mount Everest. I’ve been to the Dead Sea in Israel, so I think it would make a great line for “two truths and a lie” if I could say that I’ve been to both the highest and lowest elevations on Earth.

If money was not a consideration, I would love to:

Part of me wants to live out of a van, adopt a dog, then start in Alaska and drive down to the tip of Argentina making photos and meeting people as I go. And the other part of me that is passionate about creating safe spaces for young people wants to invest time and finances into a program for young students interested in photography. There is such a huge cost barrier to entering the field of photography, and I’d like to see it become a more accessible field, allowing everyone to share the stories that matter to them. There is something immensely powerful about having a creative voice, and I’d love to be a part of amplifying that and creating space for that in others.

Favorite UGA memory:

Last fall, I was standing in a bagel shop in Jackson, Wyoming, when I saw the byline of a photo on the front page of a local newspaper. I recognized the name as a Grady alumna, Kayla Renie, who had graduated from the photo program a year or two ahead of me, so I texted our mutual friend with a photo, simply excited to see her photos in print. We had never met before, but Kayla messaged me and offered to spend the morning getting coffee, hiking in Grand Teton National Park and sharing all about her current internship in Jackson. It was such a crazy experience to be so far from home and find a former Dawg so willing to connect.

What is your passion and how are you committed to pursuing it?

I am passionate about:
• using visual storytelling for social justice. I want to create images and share stories that shape the world we will inhabit tomorrow. I am most passionate about photo stories that challenge stereotypes, humanize statistics, and bring a new perspective to the public eye.
• making the outdoors a more inclusive and accessible place for everyone. There is a lot of intimidation surrounding anything that you’ve never done before, so I hope to equip people with the motivation, inspiration, knowledge, and skill sets necessary to explore our beautiful world on their own through my work.

After graduation, I plan to/would like to:

Land a job in photography that allows me to be outdoors and tell impactful stories in an ethical and humanizing way.

I #CommitTo:

Being here. I’ve learned the importance of being present, of investing where I am, no matter how long I’m there for. It would have been easy to view my four years in Athens as just that, four years where I would be a student passing through a college town. I’m so thankful for different roles like mine at The Red & Black that allowed me to put down roots and truly be where my feet are.

Charlotte Norsworthy profiled as UGA Amazing Student

Charlotte Norsworthy has already racked up two bachelor’s degrees, numerous awards and scholarships and is now working on her master’s in journalism. Her passion is communication — presenting information in an understandable way — because she believes knowledge is power.

Norsworthy received her Bachelor’s degree in journalism in 2019. She is currently pursuing her Master’s in journalism and expects to graduate later in 2020.

“Since graduating from UGA in spring 2019, I decided I couldn’t leave Athens,” Norsworthy said. “I am back as a master’s student studying journalism. I am currently serving as the Morris Master’s Fellow for the Cox Institute. One of the best decisions I could have made was sticking around the best university in the world.”

She says through her involvement with the Cox Institute and her journalism classes, she has formed a great bond with journalism professor Keith Herndon.

“I have traveled across the U.S., co-edited a book, co-written academic conference papers, received fellowships with The New York Times’ Ian Urbina and NPR, hosted a podcast, received scholarships and even received my current graduate assistantship, all because of Dr. Herndon’s support,” said Norsworthy. “He has truly made my time at UGA extraordinary because he is extraordinary.”

See the full UGA Amazing Student profile here.

Lottie Smalley shares student experience with thousands of YouTube followers

The intersection of visual creativity and efficient communication is where video thrives and where Lottie Smalley is most comfortable.

The fourth-year public relations student uses those skills daily as she shares her college lifestyle with more than 80,000 YouTube subscribers.

Lottie Smalley has learned many different ways to communicate digitally.

Developing compelling content, editing video, hosting discussions and curating social media audiences are all skills students learn and refine at Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. Smalley is using professor guidance and peer feedback to build on a multi-year foundation of content creation.

“I started my YouTube channel seven years ago as a creative outlet and never imagined it would grow to the following I have now,” Smalley said. “My videos started out as middle school makeup looks and must-haves, but as I grew, my channel grew alongside me.”

The Chattanooga, Tennessee, native grew up performing through dance and theatre. She had seen other fashion videos online and knew she could bring her voice to the medium. Her comfort on a live stage naturally translated to hosting for a global digital crowd.

“I was bored during the summer and had all the equipment and skills necessary to make my first video, so I just decided to go for it, and I’m so glad I did,” Smalley said.

Smalley has taken her audience through fashion trends, college admission, study abroad and a prestigious summer internship with The Coca-Cola Company.

On the third day of that internship, Smalley joined supervisors on the set of a commercial shoot for Sprite.

“I love all things video, so this was a dream for me,” Smalley said.

A few weeks later, she saw the ad premiere at the BET Awards as part of a new Sprite campaign.

Smalley brings her audience with her through those internships and study abroad trips, but she also focuses on smaller, everyday moments that collectively create authenticity and relatability. She tours her apartment, details the contents of her college backpack and shares her favorite apps for students. Her video “How I’m a Paperless Student in College!” has more than half a million views.

“My favorite creative outlet has always been YouTube,” said Smalley. “I feel like I can be most authentically myself in my YouTube videos whereas Instagram and other social media can tend to portray a sense of false perfection.”

Smalley’s post-college path is still very much unpaved and, in some ways, that is preferred. She is not chasing a particular dream job, but instead leaning on her creative convictions and interests to guide her pending professional destination.

“The social and digital media landscape is ever-changing, so the perfect job for me might not even exist yet,” said Smalley.

She is likely to explore work as a social media content creator for a digital company or a creative director for a public relations agency.

Before any of that, Smalley still has plenty of videos to produce as her audience will witness her journey to graduation one YouTube link at a time.

UGA Amazing Student: Emily Giambalvo

Emily Giambalvo, a Ramsey Honors Scholar, started in sports journalism at The Red & Black on a whim. It led to nearly 300 stories, multiple awards and the opportunity to cover the Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro for The Associated Press

Giambalvo names Vicki Michaelis, director of the Grady Sports Media certificate program, as her favorite professor.

“She’s always willing to help, whether it’s editing a Paralympics story with me at midnight in Brazil or answering questions when she happened to walk by me in the MLC while I was writing,” Giambalvo said. “Professor Michaelis offers both encouragement and criticism, and every one of her assignments has the purpose of steering students toward success in the real world. Each time I leave her class or her office, I feel excited to be a journalist.”

In her profile, Giambalvo also reflects on how her time at The Red & Black has shaped her. “During my first week of freshman year, I attended an information session at The Red & Black on a whim. I thought it might be an enjoyable hobby for a semester or two. Three years later, I still haven’t left the student-run newspaper and have written close to 300 stories.”

Read more about Giambalvo at