Meet Whitney Godwin, Recruitment and Outreach Coordinator for the Reed College of Media

HC: Introduce yourself!

WG: Hi! I’m Whitney Godwin. I’m from Flatwoods, West Virginia. I love Jesus, coffee, sports, and sunsets. My favorite teams are, of course the Mountaineers, the Green Bay Packers, and the Pittsburgh Penguins. My hobbies include baton twirling, reading, working out, traveling, and working as a freelance instant replay operator for live sports productions.

HC: To get to know you, what's your favorite book, movie and food?

WG: My favorite food is tacos. I love to read so picking a favorite book is hard, but currently I love “Girl, Wash Your Face!” by Rachel Hollis. I don’t watch a lot of movies, but my favorite TV show is The Office.

HC: What did you study in undergrad at WVU?  

WG: I was a television Journalism major in undergrad at WVU and I also have a Master’s of Science in Journalism from WVU. I am also a former WVU Feature Twirler.

HC: How did you decide on that path?

WG: In high school, I really found a passion for Journalism. I had a great teacher, Brenda Gibson, who really encouraged me to be creative and pursue topics I was passionate about. I wanted to go into Journalism because I wanted to make a difference. We didn’t have broadcast in high school, but it’s something I wanted to try. Video makes it so easy to connect emotionally with a viewer and I felt like it was an opportunity to tell someone’s story and make a difference. So I applied directly to the Television Journalism major and never looked back. As I moved through college and had internships and experiences, my interests changed a little bit. I still absolutely loved video, but I ended up loving sports video more and more---specifically I found that I enjoyed video production much more than being on air.

HC: What is your role at the university?

WG: My role at the university is a Recruitment and Outreach Coordinator for the Reed College of Media. I have a really cool job. I get to travel to high schools in eight states to share the amazing opportunities at WVU and in the Media Industry. I talk about media careers and all WVU has to offer to help students achieve their goals. When I’m not traveling, I get to communicate with future students, run media camps, teacher workshops, and high school journalism workshops here on campus. Additionally I do some social media strategy for our college and run our student ambassador program. It truly has some of the most genuine kind-hearted people. It’s not just home for me, but for my students too.

HC: What advice do you have for students that may be undecided on their education or career path?

WG: If you’re undecided, it’s totally okay! I think it’s hard for anyone to know what they want to do at age 17 or 18—whenever you’re applying to college. Even through college there were times I questioned my path even though I loved what I was doing. There’s often a stigma about changing your major, but it happens more often than you think. If you’re considering it, talk to your academic advisor—they can be really helpful! It’s okay to end up somewhere you never imagined yourself to be. I never dreamed I’d work in higher education, but I absolutely love it and it’s the perfect fit for me. For me, making a difference has always been important. That’s my purpose. Whether it’s a conversation with a student, an email to a parent, or praying for a friend. That’s what drives me to be the best I can every day. Find what makes you excited and pursue that. If you’re not sure, get some experiences like an internship or talk to a mentor. If you don’t have one, talk to me!

HC: What advice do you have for students that are "set" in their paths going into college/in college currently?

WG: I started in Television Journalism and I never looked back. Many people know exactly what they want to do when they grow up. For me, it was sports television. I still do that, but in my free time. And I love it. But I also work in higher education. That’s my career. And I love that too. I am able to do both because I’m adaptable. Even if you’re on a career path that you know you want forever, you still have to be willing to adapt and change. Each season of life looks different. You have to be willing to be hard-working and innovative in your profession. We live in a world that’s constantly changing and demands that we adapt. Never lose sight of your purpose, but be comfortable with the fact that your plan might look slightly different than you imagined.

Reach out to Whitney at [email protected] or @Whit_WVU on Twitter!