Thursday, April 26, 2018

Life in UF's CMIR

WUFT's Monday crew! Go gatas!
Hey, everyone! The countdown to graduation is here, and I am SOOO excited. Looking back on the last four years at UF, I can't help but think of all the time I spent in UF's CMIR, or Center for Media Innovation and Research. I spent hours and hours and hours in the Innovation News Center, reporting and working on projects. And my last semester, I even had the opportunity to anchor for WUFT's First at Five. So let's just say, I definitely grew some gray hairs in the journalism building...
Striped socks on live TV!

Post-show pic with my co-
anchors Henry and Nicolette!
Some of my favorite memories come from the stories I reported on for WUFT. One of my recent projects on Tim Tebow's Night to Shine prom event really opened my eyes to the kindness that exists in Gainesville (and globally for that matter). I was able to see how the community worked to make kids with special needs feel great for prom. Another project I enjoyed working on was my story on law enforcement PTSD and suicide rates. It wasn't a happy story by any means, but it taught me so much about reporting and talking to people who are going through hard times.

Monday anchors with our wonderful
producer and director.
Aside from my projects, I've loved all of my time with my lovely co-anchors and reporter at WUFT. I've made some unforgettable relationships and friendships that I'll take with me even when I leave Gainesville this fall. We always joked around and made light of even the most stressful newscasts. I will miss the Monday WUFT crew so much! Until next time. ;-)

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Review of Malcolm Gladwell's "The Tipping Point"

Nowadays, trends pop up in all sorts of ways in the average consumer’s life. From Facebook ads, to viral YouTube videos, to style flares on a fashionista’s blog, trends are everywhere. But how did they get there? And why did they become such huge social attractions in the first place? I recent read the novel “TheTipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference” by Malcolm Gladwell, and I learned some interesting things about what Gladwell defines as “social epidemics.” Social epidemics being the trends that emerge in society. I know not everyone has the time (or the interest) to sit down and read a full-length book, but at the very least, use this review to question in some way your own consumer habits.

Gladwell states that there are three different ways to understand social epidemics. Logically, you’d start with the source of the message, or the people who cause the epidemics. Let’s stick with a social media analogy here. The source would be the poster/creator of some sort of internet content, like a video or picture. The second way to understand social epidemics is, naturally, the content of the epidemic itself. So, as I previously mentioned, this would be the video or picture that the content creator published. Lastly, you can also understand social epidemics through the environment or context in which a particular epidemic takes place. In the social media analogy, the environment would be the internet, or the specific social media site the content was published on (i.e. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter). And just keep in mind, that while my analogy is fairly specific, Gladwell extends this idea to content that isn’t singularly published.

Just like there are three ways to understand social epidemics, Gladwell extended his exploration of trends and created three associative laws of social epidemics. The first is the Law of the Few. This refers to the few people in society who have a large control over content popularity, like celebrities, salespeople, public figures, etc. I think it’s interesting how Gladwell classifies these types of people as Connectors because they do serve an important function in content distribution that often goes overlooked. People tend to follow these people more than lead their own trends. Moreover, the second law Gladwell discusses is the Law of Stickiness. Yes, you read that right, stickiness. Stickiness is what the product has to be to society in order to become popular. It needs to be intriguing and memorable to its audience, which makes a lot of sense. Things actually have to be of good quality to gain traction in the consumer market. And of course, the third law is the Law of Context. This law refers to the consumer’s trends, hobbies, likes, physical location, and so forth.

All in all, I found Malcolm Gladwell’s novel “The Tipping Point” to be an extremely though-provoking read. Since I’m soon going to graduate school for public relations, it was interesting to understand Gladwell’s perspective on social trends. I also find myself asking how something became popular, or for that matter how I can produce content that draws in a large viewership. I suppose at the end of the day it’s all about context, quality and availability. I hope this review was helpful!

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Blog Review #2

Well, I was on a roll with my last blog entry so I felt like continuing some more blog reviews! Here are a few more blogs from my classmates:

Isabella's blog is similar to Nicolette's blog (from my last entry). She talks about all the quirky spots and things in Gainesville that you can enjoy as a college student. Isabella and I are both fourth year students, so I appreciate her entries on UF's campus area. Her pictures are lovely too! Visuals are always great to add to a blog like hers.

Shelby does a great job in her blog showing her passion for news and sports. I like that she shares some of her own work in the industry, it's motivating to see how much work she puts in to what she does! Although sports may not be my forte, Shelby does a great job presenting everything in a way even I can understand.

Andrea is another wonderful sports/news student at UF! I get to work with Andrea on Mondays for WUFT's First at Five newscast. Her blog is visually very clean and organized, which I like a lot. Her posts are interesting and passionate.

Blog Review #1

Blogging. I have to say, it certainly pushes me out of my comfort zone sometimes. I like being able to share what's on my mind with you all in a completely open forum. And with this open forum comes unlimited opportunities. This week, I tried comparing my own blog to entries by some of my fellow classmates. Everyone is so creative and original; it's truly inspiring. Here are outlines of some of my favorite blogs I came across! :-)

I was truly inspired by Daniela's blog. I find her blog posts very moving and personal. I like that she shares her own stories, particularly about mental health and wellness, to help others. She talks about relatable topics like stress, school, managing a job, and eating disorders.

Nicolette's blog was also equally as inspiring and helpful! She writes about Gainesville and what you should know if you're trying to take on this bustling college town. Honestly, I wish I had a blog like this to guide freshman-me during my first year at UF. Nicolette's tips could've seriously helped me back then. She does a good job picking topics that are relevant for college students like myself.

Samantha's driven personality can be seen so clearly in her website and blog. I like that she uses her blog as a mixed platform for news and relevant social topics. As a news student myself, reading someone else's perspective on the industry is very intriguing.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading all of these blogs! These ladies are truly so inspiring to me.

Friday, March 30, 2018

All about me :-)

While I'm on an all-about-me tangent, I thought it would be an appropriate time update my biography! It's always great to have updated information just in case a job or internship pops up that you really want to apply for. Having a strong resume and biography will help you compile an application quickly an efficiently. You always have to be one step ahead of your potential employer, and you always have to put your best foot forward! Here's my "best foot":     

Amanda Grohowski is a senior at the University of Florida double-majoring in Telecommunication News and Music Performance. Driven by her two passions of storytelling and music, Amanda one day hopes to merge her passions in the field of arts media.   

Amanda currently works at WCJB TV-20, a local ABC affiliate news station in Gainesville, Florida as an associate producer, photographer, and web editor. She is responsible for editing content for the station's daily live newscasts and assisting in the successful delivery of news to much of North Central Florida. Amanda also works as a reporter, multimedia journalist, and news anchor for WUFT News and its respective NPR affiliate WUFT-FM 89.1. She has previously interned at WESH 2 News in Orlando, Florida, as well as at the Hippodrome Theatre in Gainesville as a marketing assistant.   

Amanda has been playing the violin since she was 5 years old.  She has studied with Dr. Janna Lower, a Juilliard graduate and Head of the String Area at the University of Florida, and Mrs. Cindy Camp, a Juilliard graduate from South Florida. Amanda served as the Vice President of the University of Florida's Symphony Orchestra. She also performed as a featured soloist with the Treasure Coast Symphony when she was 15 years old.   

Amanda has her black belt in American Kang Duk Won Tae Kwon Do and is a strong advocate for healthy living and fitness.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

The Perpetual Student: Me

My last semester is coming to an end at the University of Florida, and I have to decide soon which graduate school I want to attend in the fall! So with all of the applications I've had to do recently, I did some reformatting of my existing resume to get my information up to date. Check it out, I'd love some feedback! :-)

Here is my updated resume:

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Traveling on a tight budget!

Traveling is a dream for so many people but sadly, money restrictions often prevent people from making their travel dreams a reality. I know that's the case for me. I can list you easily two dozen countries and cities that I would love to visit but can't because of my tight budget. I'm a senior in college after all.... paying my grocery bill is hard enough sometimes!

So how can you do it? How can you see your dream location without breaking the bank?

Jaime and Liana looking for money in their
bank accounts... Just joking! They're trying to
figure out the metro map in Paris.
One of the most valuable resources I came across recently is I was able to get roundtrip tickets to and from London Gatwick on Virgin Atlantic for around $600 total, and it was great! For an international flight like that, Skyscanner was able to keep the cost fairly low. Do a quick search for your dream destination and see when tickets are the cheapest so you can book your trip now!

If you happen to travel to Europe, for inter-country travel I would always recommend taking buses between locations instead of flying. It's much cheaper and really easy to handle when you're abroad. The two bus lines I would recommend are Eurostar and FlixBus.

And how about when you make it to your dream location? Eat smart and have fun, but plan ahead! Map out your meals and when you plan on eating out at restaurants so you don't overspend on food. So, if you have a long day of sightseeing ahead, stop at a grocery store and make some PB&J or Nutella sandwiches to take on the go. That way, you can really enjoy running around without running out of steam.