Yes, I really did reference a TikTok in my title, and yes as the title says, my name is John. I’m 20 years old, I’m a sophomore in college, and I’m a Mass Communications major. Let’s start at the beginning, but I don’t remember the very beginning so this is what my mom tells me.
I was born on September 17th in Habersham Medical Center, so just right down the road from my college. Who knew that I would be born in the town that I would later move to? Not me. I have 3 siblings; two sisters and a brother. Growing up I was the youngest… by 10 years. Yes, before you ask, I was an accident. My mom was a nurse, and my dad owns his own company. I know that it sounds like I would be rich, but since my dads company isn’t doing too hot, I’m broke.
My freshman year of high school I thought for sure that I would go to college to study music. That’s what everyone in my family thought too. My parents had raised me around music, and had put in me into piano lessons from a young age. I never did quite pick up piano, and although I love the way it sounds, playing it just didn’t really work for me. Late in elementary school and early in middle school I joined the school band and played saxophone. I practiced almost daily, spent most of my free time learning scales, I practiced harder pieces of music, and eventually practiced to the point where I started to hate the instrument. My junior year of high school I went through the most life changing experience I had ever had. I dropped all of my previous friends, quit the band, and started being who I wanted to be instead of this person that I had assumed my family wanted me to be. When I realized that no one was holding me to such a standard except myself, I found my biggest passion to this day and that’s journalism. While I was a kid I had asked my parents for a small camcorder for Christmas one year. When I got said camcorder I started filming everything. I would film anything from walking around my room at home, to me acting out skits that I wrote, to me playing with my dog. This is where my love of journalism really grabbed its roots.
Let’s get back to high school. I had been in a video class my first two years of high school in order to complete what my school called a pathway. I anchored our schools news show for the first two years and to me it wasn’t something I put any effort into, it all just came naturally at that point. My junior year after quitting band I was beginning to wonder what I would really want to do with my life. I started focusing so hard on my scripts for the news show at my school. I would spend hours in a night just trying to edit the script to make it into my idea of what I thought was something to be proud of. Looking back at those videos now– they’re terrible. Looking back at my passion during that time– unmatched. I grew to love everything from making our news show to creating commercials as well as short films. Towards the end of the year my friend Haley and I decided we wanted to compete in Broadcast Video Production through SkillsUSA. We made our feature story, edited it with our team, and sent it in. A few months later we found out that we had won 2nd in our region. Fast foward to the end of the semester we went to compete for the title of state champions. We competed, and sadly we lost to North Cobb High School. I found out my senior year of high school that the only reason we lost to North Cobb was because our bus was late picking us up the day before competition and they had deducted us the exact amount of points needed to win first place.
I say all of that because all of that emotional rollercoaster you just experienced has led me to here. I didn’t know where I wanted to go to college, I thought I wanted to go to Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville, GA, or maybe the University of Georgia. I couldn’t decided where to go. One day I went to my friend Autumn’s house. We had been planning to hangout and it was early fall so we went hiking and then back to her house so that she could change into warmer clothes before we went to eat because the temperature had dropped drastically. She invited her mom to come eat with us, and I didn’t know it at the time but her inviting her mom would change the next few years of my life. We ate dinner, and her mom, a Piedmont College alumni, asked me where I was wanting to go to school and I talked about how I was deciding between UGA and GCSU. She didn’t hesitate in asking and said “Have you considered Piedmont?” and instantly I said no. I did not want to go to college where I would still be so close to home, or go to school with a lot of the same people I had went to high school with. She convinced me to take a tour of Piedmont with her. She took me to meet the President of Piedmont College, he played the organ for us, and he told us about how the Mass Communications Department was growing and about different types of scholarships offered. I didn’t decide on a college for sure until January 1st of 2019. I moved into my dorm at Piedmont College on January 7th that same week.
My life so far has been something completely decided by making up my mind the last second like quitting the school band my junior year, and deciding on a school right before I had to move in. If this story shows anything, it shows to not let anyone tell you what will make you happy, you decide for yourself what will make you happy, and you roll with it. Don’t join band because you think your family will be upset if you don’t. Don’t go to any college until you know for sure where you want to be. Don’t waste your money, and don’t waste your efforts on something you don’t care about. That’s my life until now, and I hope you enjoyed reading about how I constantly change my mind.