As my time at the University of Florida winds down, I can’t help but think about where I was when I came here compared to where I am now. As a student at UF Journalism School I can’t begin to describe the many things I’ve been taught… but I’ll try anyway. I’d have to extend a big thanks to the great faculty here, especially Dr. Andrew Selepak, who I’ve had for three semesters. Perhaps one of the biggest stages in my development as a journalist came when I began my introductory radio course and immersed myself in the bustling Innovation News Center, part of the CMIR, the Center for Media Innovation and Research. Once I began working weekly as a reporter for WUFT-FM, it seemed like I grew a great amount in a very short period of time. My confidence increased, as did my social skills and my ability as a reporter. From August of last year to December of this year, I feel that I’ve made extremely significant strides in my personal development, and I have the CMIR to thank for that.
But the benefit of the CMIR is not limited to strictly reporting. As a student with a history outside concentration, my course load involves an extensive amount of studying. Thanks to the CMIR’s A-Ha Innovation Co-Lab, I have a place to study and concentrate when I have to read for an exam or write a paper. The A-Ha is a place where all students in the J-School can get together, whether it’s Public Relations, Advertising, Journalism, or Telecom.
Speaking of all the students in the J-School, I have made many friends who I hope to stay in touch with beyond my undergrad journey. Many of them I’ve made in the Innovation News center, whether it’s at the Gainesville NPR Affiliate WUFT-FM or at the ESPN Radio affiliate upstairs from them, ESPN 850 WRUF. They are all hardworking students who share my interest in sports, gaining knowledge, and fulfilling their true potential.
It has been a true pleasure to have gone through the University of Florida College of Journalism and Communications and associate with some of the best and the brightest, whether it’s the visionaries at the helm of the news program, or the ambitious, helpful students always willing to lend a hand along the way.
My final project in my advanced radio class had some to do with recognizability of the music of the Century Tower Carillon. In it, I concluded the story with the thought that all who studied and worked here will always find their way back to the Noble Gothic Walls of the University of Florida. Judging by my experience here and my reluctance to leave such a great place and atmosphere, I’m pretty sure I’ll be consistent with the rule and not the exception.