By Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech
ShaCamree Gowdy, 23, has long been told that writing is her strength. But it was not until a teacher suggested she join the yearbook in the 11th grade that she discovered a passion for journalism.
Her teacher, Tarasa Brierly, was the yearbook adviser and pushed ShaCamree to take a leadership role. Mrs. Brierly was tough but encouraging, and ShaCamree is now thankful for how hard her mentor pushed her.
Before pursuing a degree in communications at Mississippi State University, ShaCamree thought that journalism was just a means to an end. She loved writing and thought the natural step to take once she started college was to focus on journalism and broadcasting.
While working as a reporter at her campus newspaper, The Reflector, her attitude changed. She became more invested in stories. Her words had impact. She was introduced to new writing and editing styles, which only made her grow more as a writer and reporter.
“I felt like I was made to do journalism,” she said, and to be a conduit for the voices of those she wrote about.
After graduating in 2017, ShaCamree interned on the editorial team at The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Ready to take on a challenge and excited to see a larger city with a different energy from her hometown of Jackson, Miss., she honed her copy editing skills. Upon returning to her hometown, her growth continued at the Jackson Free Press, where she handled social media and also wrote feature stories.
ShaCamree now works as a digital content producer at WLBT in Mississippi, an NBC-affiliated television station.
Of journalism, she said, “I couldn’t see myself doing anything else.”
Photo by JuliAnna Patino/NYT Institute