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My Stories

I have compiled some of my favorite features that I wrote for Auburn Family and The Corner News.

“Writing has always and will always be a passion of mine.” - Behind the “I am Free Enterprise” Contest with Carrie Williams - The Voice of Jordan-Hare

- Auburn’s University Program Council Presents Frank Warren, Founder of PostSecret - Student Gets Involved in The College of Agriculture through Ag Ambassadors

Behind the “I am Free Enterprise” Contest with Carrie Williams has one of the most viewed videos in the contest. “I entered, truthfully, not knowing about the $50,000,” says Williams. “At the end of the day I wanted [job] options, so I started searching for competitions. I just sent in my video and three weeks later, I found out I made the top videos.”


s May approaches and the weather begins to taunt students of summer vacation, those seniors in college who are graduating have only one thing on their mind-To get a job! However, getting that job is not easy anymore. Students are going to great lengths to stand out amongst the crowd and get themselves noticed. Now more than ever, students need to think out of the box in order to get the life they want. “I am Free Enterprise” video contest is one of the many ways to get noticed if you have started your own business, created a new product or just have a great idea to share. All someone needs is a video camera and a good idea to enter for the $50,000 grand prize.

Not to mention that $30,000 will be given to the second place video and $20,000 to the third place, so why not enter? The rules are simple. You must be a legal resident of the United States and not a member of Congress. The video is to be original and no longer than three minutes. The video is required to be tagged with 14 different words such as, Competition, Challenge, Dream and Entrepreneur. As long as the video explains what free enterprise means to you, then it can be entered. More than 40 videos have been entered already and the top 25 most viewed will be in the running for the grand prize. Auburn University’s Carrie Williams, who is a senior majoring in Radio, Television and Film (RTVF)

Williams, who is the station manager for Auburn’s TV station, Eagle Eye, did a story on two students who created their own businesses. In the video, Williams spotlights Emma Jane Keller and David Zima who have both turned their passions into a lifestyle. “So why not take the risk, make your own employment and be your own boss,” Williams asked in her video. Williams explains that she wanted to do the story because it is now a rarity to see students have their own businesses. “People are relying on college to get them jobs nowadays and not being creative,” says Williams. “This video shows two students who don’t fit the mold by using the fundamental stills learned in college to open up their own business-why not do what you love and get paid for it?”

The contest has gained a lot of attention at Auburn over the past few weeks because of Williams’ video. The public relations department has taken particular interest in helping publicize the contest as well as encouraging students and alumni to watch Williams’ video. Robert French, a public relations professor, has been doing his best to use social media to get the word out on Williams’ video. French has posted multiple times on Auburn Family blog, PROpenMic. com blog and on his personal Twitter account. The Blue Ribbon Panel will announce on May 10 the five videos that have moved on to the final round. After the announcement, the public is able to vote for their favorite video until the contest ends on June 2. Williams has upped her campaign on Facebook and Twitter encouraging friends to watch her video. In her last status Williams wrote: “Help me win $50,000 in the American Free Enterprise competition. I need as maaannny views as I can get by April 16th. Let’s really get this video fired up!!!! Spread this link everywhere! Thanks for your help!!!!” All of these contestants just want to be seen, heard and listened to. They want to share their inspirational stories, tell how they created a business and encourage others to do the same.

Williams’ attitude about the contest is positive and she is just having fun being a part of it.

The thought of winning $50,000 is something that Wil“I really don’t care about the money,” liams is excited about and alsays Williams. “I just hope someone will though it was not her reason for see my work and offer me a job. I want to entering it would be the perfect feel acknowledged for my work.” way to end her college career.

“If I win,” says Williams, “I am definitely going to give some of it to charity. But after that, it would really help me with my move to NYC and I would buy a very nice video camera.”

The Voice ofJordan-Hare about 100 individual internships, followed by Spring then Fall. “What’s great for me is to see students have these amazing internships,” says Smith. He has seen students go to NYC, LA and even abroad for these internships.


hether you know him as a professor, the internship guy or the voice of the stadium, Ric Smith is someone that has made a lasting impact on the lives of many students, faculty and community members. Smith has been a dedicated faculty member here at Auburn University in the department of Journalism & Communication since the fall of 1992. Before joining the Auburn family, Smith earned his B.A. at the University of South Carolina. He then earned his Master of Communication and Master of Education degrees here at Auburn.

During the fall when Smith isn’t working in his office, teaching or abroad with the Olympics, you can find him in the football stadium. Well maybe you won’t be able to actually find him, but you will sure be able to hear him. Auburn fell within the circle for the Atlanta games to look for recruits, said Smith.

Smith has been the voice of the stadium since the start of the 2006 football season.

“Once you’re in, you do a good job and you have the opportunity to continue,” says Smith regarding how he got the chance to work with the other three Olympic games.

“Announcing is the next big thing for me,” says Smith. “It’s hard work but the people are terrific.”

Smith is also passionate about his position as “the internship guy” or more formally known as the Director of Experiential Learning.

Smith has had the opportunity to work with four different Olympic games- Atlanta, Sydney, Salt Lake City and Athens.

All PR, Communication and RTVF major are required to complete an internship in order to graduate. Smith oversees every single one.

How did he get such an amazing opportunity?

Smith says that the Summer semester is always the busiest with

Smith began announcing years ago by getting involved with the campus radio station, Weagle. He also announced for Auburn baseball for 5 years before he hit the announcing jackpot. He was offered the position of football announcer in the spring of 2006 and announced the A-Day game. “[Football announcing] is a lifelong dream,” says Smith smiling. “A once in a lifetime opportunity. And here I am!”

Auburn’s University Program Council Presents Frank Warren, Founder of PostSecret posts many of these on his blog or includes them in a book or exhibit,” she says. “These secret-keepers get to remain anonymous, but they also gain a sense of freedom by letting their secret go.” Warren has been touring the country and this stop will be the only one in the state of Alabama. His recent lectures have sold out weeks before the event.


or thousands of people around country, Sunday is much more than just a day of relaxation, it is the day where new secrets are revealed on PostSecret. It is a day that people eagerly await for Frank Warren to update his blog with all the new secrets he has received since the week before. Auburn’s University Program Council (UPC) will be bringing the creator of PostSecret, Frank Warren, to speak on Monday, February 8 at 7 pm. UPC’s Speakers and Comedians (SAC) will be hosting this event and are very excited about it. Kathryn Johnson, assistant director of SAC, cannot wait until Monday.

“Maybe I’m biased, but I believe this is one of the most awesome events UPC has brought to Auburn since I’ve been a student here. Frank Warren, founder of PostSecret, is coming to The Plains,” says Johnson excitedly. Many students became familiar with PostSecret from the music video “Dirty Little Secret” by the All American Rejects. However, for those who still don’t understand what this phenomenon is, Johnson gives a great explanation. “PostSecret is described as a community mail art project in which people mail their deepest, darkest secrets to Frank Warren, who

Warren will be revealing secrets that have never been published as well as telling the story of how it all got started. Students will have the opportunity to purchase a book prior to the lecture and if they are brave enough, will have the chance to share a secret of their own with the audience. Many unexpected things have happened during Warren’s lectures, including a surprise wedding proposal. The University Program Council hopes you come out and enjoy the show. Tickets are only $1 with a valid student ID. So get ready to hear some of America’s deepest, darkest secrets as well as some from your fellow peers.

Student Gets Involved in The College of Agriculture through Ag Ambassadors


hoosing a college is never easy. Especially for someone who doesn’t even know what they are looking for in a college. Kate Derby, a junior majoring in animal sciences, felt the same way when she first started at Auburn. Derby grew up in a small Alabama town just west of Tuscaloosa and was nervous about attending a large university. She didn’t want to feel overwhelmed and felt that in certain colleges she would just be a number in a class and never a name. “I graduated with only 20 people,” says Derby. “I didn’t think I would be able to find that small classroom feel at Auburn, but luckily I was wrong. The College of Ag gave me that feeling of closeness with my fellow peers, professors and advisers that I really wanted.” Now, three years later, Derby is extremely involved in her college. This past year, she served as the secretary for Ag Ambassadors and will be the president of The College of Agriculture for the 2010-2011 school year. “I never thought Ag Ambassadors was going to be something I’d be so passionate about,” Derby says. Derby goes on to tell how she and eight other members got the amaz

ing opportunity to attend the 2010 National Ag Ambassador Conference in San Francisco. Every year there are four awards given out and this year Auburn’s Ag Ambassadors were honored with the Community Service Award. The ambassadors put together a fundraiser for the East Alabama Food Bank. “We really hope to make this an annual event!” she says. “It was great winning the award but we really just want to spread awareness and help out the food bank. We want to get everyone on board so we can make next year an even bigger success.” While at the conference, Derby and the other students were able to get great ideas from many other schools including LSU and Texas. “We were able to meet with other ambassadors from different schools,” says Derby. “It was so cool because we were able to learn and really grow as a group and were able to bring back what we learned there to our group here.” Derby says that even though she is very involved now, she was not as a freshman. Her biggest regret is not getting involved sooner and she wishes that someone would

have told her to get involved her first year. She reminds prospective students that it doesn’t matter if you are a freshman because it is never too early to get involved on this campus.


I have compiled some of my favorite features that I wrote for Auburn Family and The Corner News. - The Voice of Jordan-Hare - Student Gets I...


I have compiled some of my favorite features that I wrote for Auburn Family and The Corner News. - The Voice of Jordan-Hare - Student Gets I...