AdPR Student Spotlight: Shelby Clayton

Shelby Clayton, senior advertising major 
Shelby Clayton is a senior advertising major pursuing a sociology minor. Shelby is from Orlando, Fla.
What encouraged you to apply to Grady College?  

At first, I was a pre-business student because I figured business was the route I wanted to pursue. However, many upperclassmen I met were Grady students. They told me about their amazing experiences within Grady College, and I decided to do some research. I found that Grady partnered with many great organizations that I was interested in. My major in particular, is business-oriented, but media focused. I liked that combination, so I applied to Grady just in time.
What activities are you involved in at Grady/UGA/Athens?

I loved attending the ADPR Connection with Grady, and I got a chance to help provide gifts for guest speakers. I was a former promotions intern for the UGA Athletic Association. I serve as an officer for the R.O.S.E. Society, where we host prospective football recruits on UGA game days (GO DAWGS)! Currently, I am the Vice President of Women in Sports and Events (WISE, UGA) where we provide various networking opportunities for college women who are interested in the sports industry. My favorite community involvement at UGA is Shop with a Bulldawg (SWAB). I have been a mentor and served on a committee for the past three years at UGA.
What kinds of internships or work have you been involved in, and what were your responsibilities?

The summer before I entered UGA, I got an amazing opportunity to intern with the United States Tennis Association, Southern division. I was primarily a tournament intern for what is now known as the BB&T Atlanta Open in Atlantic Station. At the time, the event took place at Racquet Club of the South in Norcross, Ga. I worked under the ticket sales manager handling VIP, media, and player credentials for the tournament. 

Additionally, I interned at the UGA Athletic Association as a promotions intern for a year. I started out as a volunteer working sporting events every week. The promotions team was responsible for handing out promotional items as well as in-game promotions like t-shirt tosses. Then, I worked specifically worked softball handling youth team tours and on-field appearances. I also managed student volunteers who helped out at softball games. 

This past summer, I worked at the Mayor’s Office of Special Events in Atlanta as its intern. Our office was responsible for assembling event permits for outdoor event organizers. We also planned and executed the mayor’s signature events throughout the year. 

My most interesting experience was having the opportunity to appear on CNN three times. Everyone asks me how that happened, and it honestly came from a Facebook post that led to an interview with the producer. I appeared on-air as a Generation Y Panelist discussing my views on race relations with other college students. Don Lemon was the anchor for two segments. Poppy Harlow and Jim Sciutto were the moderators for my last segment where we discussed the Israel/Hamas conflict. I am so grateful for that opportunity because it helped me grow as a young adult and college student.  

What were the best parts of these experiences?
My favorite part of these experiences has been the people I got a chance to meet along the way. I am still in contact from my supervisors from my first internship. I have fostered these relationships over the years, and it has been very rewarding in return. Many of my past co-workers and supervisors want me to succeed, and they are willing to help me. I have also enjoyed the skill sets and first-hand working experience that will make my resume very marketable.
What part of your Grady experience (classes, professors, etc.) has been helpful in your internship or work experiences?
My professors, definitely. I have gained valuable knowledge from some great professors. They have helped understand the industry as a whole. I am able to talk about my coursework and course concepts in my recent interviews. Employers were impressed when I could apply my knowledge from my class to my internship. I have to credit my peers as well because they have taught me how to work with a team, which is crucial for many jobs.
What advice would you give to someone who is considering pursuing an AdPR program?
Research, research, research. Do not choose a program because it sounds nice from others. Before I chose Grady, I researched the college to understand what I would be gaining from their programs. I wanted to know the opportunities with a degree from Grady, and that came from going online and reading the degree program description and visiting Grady College’s website. Since this is a competitive program, keep your GPA high and start gaining work experience early.
What are your career goals and interests?
This was actually the question I have been battling with for the past three years in college. I knew I wanted to get involved in sports, but I did not know where. After speaking on CNN about social issues, I realized I wanted to leverage that with my passion for sports. Luckily, I figured out that I want to work in corporate philanthropy for a sports entity. For example, NBA Cares is the NBA’s global community outreach initiative that addresses social issues. So, I get to help people and still be involved in sports. A win-win.

You can follow Shelby via her personal blog and Twitter.

No comments: