#ProfilesOfTenacity: Amelia Green

Why did you choose Grady and your course of study?

Grady offered versatility and an environment that was challenging yet welcoming to a new student at the University of Georgia. I felt as though the goals outlined in Grady coursework aligned with my personal career goals and that the Sports Media Certificate would offer me real-world experience in the sports media field. I am so grateful that I pursued my undergraduate education with Grady and will cherish the experience for a lifetime. 

What does the word “tenacity” mean to you?

To me, tenacity means thriving when challenges are presented and offering innovative and creative solutions when new endeavors present themselves as difficult.

What are you passionate about?

I am passionate about presenting the world of sports to viewers and fans in a new and captivating way. Whether it is working for the PGA TOUR as head of event planning, the Nashville Superspeedway as a social media manager, or even the National Olympic Committee as a marketing analyst, ideally, I see myself in a field that allows me to make meaningful contributions to both the media consumers and the athletic organizations. I enjoy telling stories and I enjoy making compelling content, but most importantly I want to make people care about the why in sports. 

What or who has had the biggest impact on your life during your time at UGA?

Professor Finlay had acted as my mentor for the past three years at UGA. He has given me so much advice and is always available when I need to ask a question or simply decompress about school to someone who understands the convoluted times of undergrad.

Green was selected to work as an Associated Press Photojournalist for the 2022 Winter Paralympics in Beijing.
What has been your proudest moment in the past year?

My proudest moment in the past year was being selected to travel to the Beijing Winter Paralympics as an Associated Press Photojournalist. Even though we were not able to go due to COVID-19, the other selected students and myself prepared for months and strengthened our skills to be able to tell stories about the incredible athletes competing in Beijing.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received from an instructor, mentor or family member?

The best piece of advice I have received while at UGA has been to take risks. During my early years in the Sports Media program, Professor Finlay and Professor Michaelis reminded me that while skill is important, being willing to do any task that is asked of you says a lot about your work ethic and character. I was encouraged to make opportunities where there are none and that stepping out of my comfort zone is what will continue to give me a competitive edge in a very competitive field. I now believe that every success in your personal and professional life comes from taking risks and that is the key to being successful in today’s sports media industry.

Green is an intern for the Clarke Central High School Sports Information Department.
What are you planning to do after graduation?

I find myself striving for an opportunity in the sports media field because of its extensive range, rapid pace and growing influence in today’s society. After graduation, I will be attending Vanderbilt University for a Masters in Marketing to gain a more comprehensive understanding of the evolving, complex and global reach of the sports marketing and media industry.

What is your favorite app or social media channel and why?

Instagram is my favorite social media channel because of my passion for photography. Instagram allows me to follow my favorite photojournalists and photographers around the globe and provides a lot of inspiration when it comes to making engaging photographs and writing stories. 

What would people be surprised to know about you?

I am a licensed pilot and frequently fly rescue missions for Pilots N’ Paws Animal Rescue!

Where is your favorite place on campus and why?

The UGA Intramural Fields is my favorite spot on campus because I can either play in one of the many intramural sports leagues for students, take a relaxing walk around Lake Herrick or read a good book!

 

Alumni Feature: Cameron Whitlock

When Cameron Whitlock graduated from Grady in 2011 with a degree in journalism, he had no idea where the next few years would lead him. Using the skills he learned during his time at UGA and the life experiences he gathered post-grad, he now freelances and works as a wedding videographer.

Cameron Whitlock graduated from Grady College with a degree in journalism. (Photo: Cameron Whitlock)

In college, Whitlock said he was pulled toward a career that allowed him to be creative. With a heart for public relations and a love for storytelling, he ultimately decided to study journalism.

Whitlock started working for a newspaper in Jackson County after graduation, where he implemented the skills he gathered in college. Through his classes, Whitlock says he learned core photography and graphic design principles that he used and further refined at the paper.

“They let me have a lot of liberty with the front of my sports section. I did graphics and different charts and really put a lot of visual aids in a small newspaper that probably didn’t have that sort of thing really going for it before, but they let me be creative,” he remembered.

After about four years at the paper, Whitlock decided to try something new. He packed up a bag and left Georgia to travel internationally for a year. 

“It had always been a dream of mine to travel the world. I really love traveling and learning different cultures and languages and different things, so I kind of did the ‘digital nomad’ thing for about a year or so,” he said.

Whitlock freelanced in both writing and graphic design while he backpacked. Everywhere he went, he took his camera to document his adventures. 

“I had a small backpack for over two months in Spain and France, and I actually can’t believe I carried around a giant camera with me now,” he said. “But I just filmed everything and got much better.”

Whitlock now works as a wedding videographer for Whitlock Wedding Films. (Photo: Cameron Whitlock)

When he finally returned to Georgia in 2017, his newly developed camera skills came in handy. A friend saw his work and asked if he had considered wedding videography. Whitlock took a leap of faith and gave it a shot. After people saw his first video, the business “took off,” he said.

Whitlock said his time in the College taught technical skills like software editing as well as helped him grow personally. While before college he was more introverted, he credits UGA with helping get him outside of his comfort zone to meet a variety of different people.

“It really is the skills that I learned from some of the graphic design stuff in school, some of the photography stuff on the job, talking to people in Grady and in my reporter job really helped me a lot,” he said. 

When it comes to advice for students looking to pursue a more non-traditional career, Whitlock’s answer is simple: just give it a shot.

“Don’t shy away from exploring different things because you never know when you’re going to find something that is exciting and new and interesting to you,” he encourages. “I would have never thought that I actually enjoyed filming weddings and going to random weddings every Saturday. It’s not something I would have thought would have been up my alley.”

But now Whitlock said exploring this avenue has given him a career that he is not only successful at but also is job he finds genuinely fulfilling.

#ProfilesOfTenacity: Tévon Knight

What does the word “tenacity” mean to you?

When you have a goal, no matter what is thrown in your way, you find a way to succeed. Tenacity is all about persisting when things are tough, uncertain, scary or down right impossible. Growing as a human is all about leaving your comfort zone and pushing past the things that make you want to quit. That’s tenacity.

What would people be surprised to know about you?

People would be surprised to know I’m a big professional wrestling fan! I never talk about it, but watching professional wrestling from a young age is what got me very interested in storytelling and video production.

What are you passionate about?

Storytelling has always existed, but in the last 20 or so years, the technology and access to quality storytelling is extremely abundant. My goal as a filmmaker is to use that abundance to give voices to minority groups who have been underrepresented and unheard throughout history. We can’t fully love and accept each other if we don’t understand each other. Everyone has baggage, everyone has challenges and everyone has a voice. I want to help move to a place where everyone’s voice is not only equally elevated, but we can also accept each other’s individual experiences. I want my art to convey that just because someone’s path doesn’t reflect our own, we do not have to be in opposition.

Who is your professional hero?

Ava DuVernay, who is the director of several critically acclaimed films that educate on the African American experience up to this point in history. Some of her films include “When They See Us” and “Thirteenth.”

Why did you choose Grady and your course of study?

Coming into college, I knew I wanted to learn how to effectively tell stories. Grady is predicated on telling meaningful, impactful stories. Whether that be through a branding campaign, a movie screen or a newsroom. I decided on Grady because I knew I’d be able to gather tools and network as I learned my craft.

What is your favorite app or social media channel?

I like to post my photography on Instagram, but I like Vimeo and YouTube as well.

What has been your proudest moment in the past year?

My proudest moment in the last year would have to be purchasing my first professional camera, the Panasonic GH5. Having this camera has allowed me to continue creating in my free time and apply things I’ve learned in Grady to more of my personal work!

What are you planning to do after graduating? Do you have a dream job?

After graduating, I plan to grow my freelance business in the Atlanta area. From there, I hope to expand into other large cities around the United States. Ultimately, I one day want to own a nonprofit that focuses on educating children of color in low-income neighborhoods in the subject of media production.

Where is your favorite place on campus?

The Main Library study rooms

What has been the hardest part about adjusting to COVID-19 in your life as a student and future professional?

Things being online can be challenging, but I think the hardest thing (especially for Entertainment and Media Studies students) is searching for opportunity. The film industry and videography industry is seeing difficult times right now. However, having tenacity is all about creating your own opportunities in any way possible. That’s what I’ve done, and what I’ll continue to do.