Have you ever had a student who, no matter what, always went and did way more than you expect for an assignment? How about one who would work on assignments months (yes, months) ahead of their due date and produced some of the best work you have seen from a student?
My answer is: YES. I have seen this most definitely. Over the years, I have had students who have gone beyond the call of duty for assignments, asked insightful and relevant questions, and brought forth a professional attitude to the class which resonated with other students in class. As part of my #ProudProf series, I would like to feature Amanda Roberson, who was one of my great students from the University of Louisville.
I had Amanda (pictured above at the bottom right) actually first in my Strategic Writing class, and she is the standard I use for the class when it comes to always going the extra effort on any given assignment. When Amanda took my class, this was the time where I was working on an infographic assignment for the class for the very first time. I remember having several conversations with Amanda about infographics and I remember her talking about how she never made one before this class.
Amanda then took my social media class and was part of a great group of students who created a great social media proposal for the UofL Planetarium. There were two things, along with Amanda’s professionalism and dedication/work ethic, that really struck out to me. First, she is a very strong writer and really had a strong voice and perspective to share, which was very cool to see from a professor’s standpoint. She was able to get a TON of writing experience working for LocalView, a local start up that focused on what was happening in the Louisville area.
Second, she has a talent for research and piecing together facts to tell a story. Amanda was in charge of the research component for her social media class proposal, and it was extremely thorough and complete. I have reiterated many times to all of my classes the importance of having strong research and writing skills, and Amanda had both of these mastered in my opinion.
Now, fast forward a few years later, Amanda is now the research manager for Nowsourcing, which is a great inforgraphics design company here in Louisville. It’s been so fun for me to see some of the work she’s been able to produce for some of these infographics for clients all over the US and world, and several have gotten into the popular press. I remember one of my social media colleagues shared the infographic online and said how great it was – and I said, yep! That’s one of my former students!
In summary, I am very proud of Amanda for the journey she has taken from being a student at UofL to working in a company that has embraced her strong research skills. She was a joy to have in two classes at UofL and she’s an example of how one student can embrace a role in a field and company from first being introduced to it from a class assignment. This is why I feel it’s key for professors to experiment and share with students all of the various possibilities and opportunities that are out there in the field.
Very proud of you, Amanda! Keep up the great work at Nowsourcing!