Following is a Q&A with one of the 1,379 students who received a diploma May 5 at UW-Stout.
Name: Shannon Hoyt
Major: Professional communication and emerging media, applied journalism (applied field: multimedia content production)
Awards, honors: Chancellor's Award four years, Magna Cum Laude, Outstanding Student Leader of the Year nomination, Prometheus 2017 1st place poem "In Youth," second place short story "Eternity," WNA Better Newspaper Contest third place arts and entertainment story
Why did you choose UW-Stout? I grew up around this area but never thought I would attend a college so close to where I lived. When I toured the campus, something just felt right. I felt at home. Choosing Stout is something I will never regret. This small campus gave me the biggest opportunities.
What are the biggest obstacles you faced in earning your degree? Getting involved was no major feat. Stout has so much to offer. But one of the biggest obstacles in earning my degree was deciding what to do with it. Professional communication and emerging media is a jack-of-all-trades. Once I finished our core curriculum, I was able to focus on my applied field, a unique aspect to our PCEM program. I took classes in creative writing, photography and more. Those classes now make up my multimedia content production focus. The program doesn't offer direct courses in broadcasting, so I made my own.
What stands out among your college experiences? Stoutonia, the student-led newspaper, has stuck with me through it all. For three years I worked my way up to the position of editor-in-chief. The polytechnic aspect of our university allowed me to gain entry level experience in news before having graduated. Through Stoutonia, I have become an efficient writer, editor and leader, and the most amazing part of it all was working with my talented team members.
What’s next? I have accepted a full-time position as a multimedia journalist for WQOW TV 18 in Eau Claire. I hope to continue working my way up in the broadcasting industry. One day I hope to find a spot on the big screens.