Author Archive

Student Spotlight: Katie Atkinson

katie atkinson

Katie Atkinson, a Senior from Peachtree City, truly inspired us this week with her views on technology and the future. An extremely clever budding developer, Katie is fully ready for the future and excited to explore more and more growing opportunities. As both a Mass Media Arts major and one of our fabulous NMI Certificate candidates, Katie participated in the first ever TEDxUGA class! We’re so happy we got to pick her brain this week.

Question: What about technology are you in love with?
Katie: I love that technology is always changing and that it connects people to one another.

Question: What has been your favorite moment in the NMI? 
Katie: My favorite moment is seeing the graduates coming to the digital brown bag class to discuss their jobs and how the NMI helped them prepare for the future. My favorite moment at UGA was being accepted into the Mass Media Arts program.

Question: Where can you see yourself going with your NMI skills?
Katie: I hope to develop a life changing app or technology in the science field that will benefit society.

Question: You can have coffee with one New Media or technology person, alive or dead. Who is it and what would you talk about?
Katie: I would like to have coffee with Heddy Lamar. She was an actress in the 194O’s. She developed a frequency-hopping idea. Lamar and Antheil’s frequency-hopping idea served as a basis for modern spread-spectrum communication technology, such as Bluetooth, COFDM used in Wi-Fi network connections, and CDMA used in some cordless and wireless telephones.

I would love to ask what her ideas are for technology in the future. Also, I would ask how she came up with her frequency-hopping idea.



No Failure: Dr. Shamp’s Guide to Job Interviews

Scott Shamp

Any student in the New Media Institute knows to always be on the lookout for a coveted “J-word” – a job! With the Career Center’s Summer Job and Internship fairs coming up, we know that many of our students have gotten down to business writing and rewriting their resumes, double-checking business cards, and testing out handshakes. In my case, I had something just as frightening in my path – an interview with my dream graduate school. Fortunately, I knew exactly who to go to for advice – the one and only, Dr. Scott Shamp!

I was lucky enough to sit down with Dr. Shamp and pick his brain on what he wants to hear from a job applicant – and what he really doesn’t want to hear. Whether you’re practicing at the Career Center, interviewing for your dream job, or anything in between, Dr. Shamp’s fantastic advice is bound to improve your tactics.

The First Things:
According to Dr. Shamp’s experience, the first thing you need to do when walking into your interview is shake hands, and set down your resume and business card, always dressed to impress.  And if you haven’t heard it before, always be aware of having open body language – no crossed arms, no touching your face, no fidgeting.

Be sure to get to your location at least 10 to 15 minutes early. “Being late is deadly,” Dr. Shamp said.

And if you’re too early? Read something! “Always carry something that you’ll be proud to read,” said Dr. Shamp. Whether it’s your favorite newspaper or a book on your interests, let your interviewer catch you reading something that will impress, because as Dr. Shamp says, “your interview starts the minute you walk through the door. Don’t check your phone in front of them and never bring an open computer.”

The Purpose of the Interview:
Much to my surprise, the purpose of a good interview isn’t just to ensure that the applicant is skilled, but rather to establish a connection between both parties. “You want to let people know that you’re easy to work with – that you’re the kind of person they want to work with. Always get to know your interviewer.”

“My future depends on the students I bring in,” said Dr. Shamp. He doesn’t just want students that will make him proud in class, but students that will improve the reputation of the department after they leave.

How Much to Say:
So how do you really start the interview?

“Pick the three things that you want [your interviewer] to remember about you – I like to have fun, I know my stuff, I get along with others. And you can always talk more about passion.” Those three things can carry your interview a long way.

“Some of the worst applicants feel like they have to jam in everything into the interview. That’s BAD. Don’t do that.”

But what if you want to talk about your great internship or your summer job? According to Dr. Shamp, as long as your experience is on your resume, don’t talk just about those things listed. “Talk about why that experience made you better – what it gave you to make you stand out.”

On manners, “Southernness has that advantage in manners and in being polite,” said Dr. Shamp. But he emphasized to always be on the top of your game with etiquette. “I don’t call someone by their first name until they’ve told me three times to do so!”

“Don’t talk too much,” he added. “If you’re using specific words just to be impressive, it’s going to backfire. Smile – just be engaged!”

Leave Them Wanting More:
“When you’re talking, you better make sure you’re talking about what you care about,” Dr. Shamp said. “If it’s what you care about, I’m interested. But don’t tell me what I should care about.

“Don’t start your conversation talking about what the interviewer does. Give them some positive surprises,” he said. “Always leave your interviewer wanting more. Don’t jam every little detail in and leave them with that positive connection.”

What Doesn’t Work:
“Humor never works,” Dr. Shamp said. “Don’t try to be funny, because 99% of the time, it won’t work.”

“Don’t talk about alcohol, and don’t drink there,” he added.

My favorite tip, though, was to never act like Dr. Shamp’s least favorite type of applicant: “people who don’t listen.”

“Listen well. Pay attention. You want them to see that you’ll help their department.”

No Failure:
Dr. Shamp’s advice comes with years of experience and wisdom, so read carefully, pay attention, and always remember, “the interview isn’t a success if you get the job. The interview is a success if you got your three main points across.”

“Even if you don’t get [the job], you’ll leave with a new connection that can tell others about you.” That’s where you find the success.

Student Spotlight: Shayna Brandi

shayna brandi

Shayna Brandi isn’t your typical UGA student. As another of our NMI scouts, spunky Shayna works hard to not only promote the NMI with a solid reputation, but to carve herself a path into the entertainment industry. Most impressively, Shayna has already earned her New Media certificate, working hard as her group’s programmer. She’ll be graduating in December as a Mass Media Arts major and Sociology minor, so we’re certainly lucky we get to hear from this excitable and driven student!

Question: What about technology are you in love with?
Shayna: My Roku! It is so much fun. There is a puppy channel where you can watch a live stream of puppies whenever you want. What could be better than a device where you can discover all sorts of TV shows and movies AND watch puppies whenever you want?

Question: What has been your favorite moment in the NMI?
Shayna: My favorite moment in the NMI was definitely presenting at my Capstone’s Slam. As my group’s coder, I worked my butt off creating our app all semester and nothing was more rewarding than showing off all the hard work at the Slam!

Question: How about your favorite moment at UGA?
Shayna: One of my favorite moments at UGA… that’s definitely a tough one. One moment that sticks out in my mind is when we beat LSU this year in Sanford Stadium. As an avid football fan, I was going nuts and to share that excitement with everyone in the stands was an incredible experience. I have never heard Sanford Stadium so loud. The campus erupted with school pride and I loved every second of it.

Question: Where can you see yourself going with your NMI skills?
Shayna: I want to go into the entertainment industry in some way. I have already started using my NMI skills to market myself to the job world in order to get hired. Beyond that, I hope to introduce the skills I have acquired in the NMI into any job I have in order to make a positive impact on that industry.

Question: You can have coffee with one New Media or technology person, alive or dead; who is it and what would you talk about?
Shayna: Percy Spencer- I’d like to thank him for inventing the microwave oven. Without him, I would probably starve. I’d like to thank him for making microwavable meals a possibility.

Question: What if you could have coffee with ANY person alive or dead?
Shayna: My grandfathers. I never really got to know them and I’d give anything to hear about their lives and tell them about mine. I bet they would have some pretty interesting stories to share.

We loved hearing from Shayna and we know you’ll love keeping up with her on her Twitter!

Leading in Innovation

The NMI was recently mentioned by DiscoverUGA, as a program that’s making innovation happen within the university! Click “Read More” to see how the NMI, along with other programs, are pursuing this concept of innovation and making it a way of life!

Student Spotlight: Danielle Meinert

Another of our NMI Scouts, Danielle Meinert, sat down with us this week to talk all about educational inequality, volunteering, technology, and her own life. Danielle has an impressive background in volunteer experience and immediately gives off a feeling of passion and excitement. An avid bagel-eater and a third year at UGA, Danielle is a double major in Advertising and English – as well as a New Media candidate! We can really see Danielle going big places with New Media and truly changing the world.
What about technology are you in love with?
Danielle: Technology connects more people to more resources. I’m passionate about improving educational inequality– I do a lot with the literacy nonprofit First Book to give children the books they need, but I’m interested in spreading knowledge faster, more efficiently, and more equally. The internet allows anyone with a connection to watch a cooking tutorial, learn calculus, or read literature on the common market. When these educational tools succeed, they empower people to make their own web solutions: write on a helpful blog, share their personal experiences, or jump into entrepreneurship with their own startup. The internet is our best contemporary solution to make the world smarter, more connected, and full of more opportunity.

Have you worked for any social movements or volunteer opportunities regarding your passion for educational inequality?
During my first year at UGA, I volunteered weekly with audiobook recorder Learning Ally. They focus on making educational textbooks for the blind, dyslexic, those with learning disabilities, and anyone who could benefit from audio learning supplements. I learned to record audiobooks in a soundbooth; sending off completed files was a tangible way to know I was helping at least one person. I still volunteer each month.

I also volunteer with the Jeannette Rankin Women’s Scholarship Fund to rate applications for the scholarship created for low-income women 35 or above who wish to finish college.
I volunteer with First Book UGA to fundraise, advertise, and event plan, but also to distribute the books to the kids. We’re starting a program with elementary schools to read to the children, and I am thrilled to deliver them their first books just for them.

What has been your favorite moment in the NMI? 
At the NMI Slam, media and technology professionals come back in town to learn about the projects and hold mock interviews for the Capstone students. Many of these professionals are alumni of the Institute, and their faces are filled with an immense joy to be back on the fourth floor of the Journalism building surrounded by new projects and great ideas. Students get to interview with at least half of them– all have mastered their fields, and many have started their own companies. Interviewing with alumni was sometimes intimidating, but always encouraging and inspiring. I keep many of their ideas and lines of advice written above my desk; those two hours still empower me to make my best work and to push past initial failures. They remind me to keep starting.
How about at UGA?
My favorite moments at UGA are every other Monday. I’m the editor for a positive press publication called The Chapel Bell(TCB). Our goals are to make content that inspires students, that makes people shift their perspectives, and that puts enormous smiles onto their faces. We distribute the physical paper across campus every other Monday when students need it most, always personally giving them a positive publication and a genuine smile. Seeing how TCB has motivated students and brightened their days encourages me to make things that not only make the world work better, but make our minds more positive places to live in.
What brought you to both Ad and English as majors? What brought you to the NMI? How would you hope to combine the three?

When I applied to UGA as a senior in high school, I knew I wanted to work with words. My narrowly-focused mind didn’t trust that an English degree would get me far, so I chose Advertising on the application. I didn’t add English until my second year; the two majors balance each other well, allowing me to research, write in multiple styles, and learn how to brand products and services from multiple perspectives. That balance has proven invaluable to me.
My sister completed the New Media Certificate when she was here, so I already had a positive introduction to it. I started working toward the certificate during my second year and was able to complete it early, learning skills halfway through college that benefit me every day.
You can have coffee with one New Media or technology person, alive or dead. Who is it and what would you talk about?
Author John Green and his brother Hank make YouTube videos on their Vlogbrothers channel. Their vlogs connect a close-knit community to important and quirky information, amazing nonprofits, new technology, and big ideas. I had the privilege to meet them for about 32 seconds in January of 2012, and I’ve wished since then that I could talk to them more about where their inspiration and drive comes from to make such wonderful books, videos, startup companies, and innovative products. They are my role models of the real world and of the internet, and I wish I could personally thank them for how positively they’ve shaped my goals and life.

What other vlogs would you recommend people to look out for?
I also like vloggers Ze Frank, CGP Grey, and Hannah Hart, and educational channels like Crash Course, Mental Floss, and ASAP Science. I also like to watch SoulPancake and Ed Stockham (Smiling Limpet).

Don’t forget to follow Danielle’s twitter account!