College Graduation Series
Interview by Alyzia McAlmon
Chris Lindsay is a graduate of the first class of Student U students. Lindsay made a difference at UNC-Charlotte during undergrad and he is now working to make his new community at Arizona State University a better place. Find out how Chris makes a difference in his new community while still keeping Student U in mind.
Where did you attend school for your undergraduate degree?
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte
What did you study?
I earned my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Communications Studies, with a Concentration in Mass Media; and minor in Journalism.
Where are you now for graduate school?
Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism, Phoenix, AZ
What are you studying?
I am pursuing my Master of Arts in Sports Journalism
What was the toughest obstacle you had to overcome as a college student preparing for graduate school?
The toughest obstacle I had to overcome as I prepared to embark on this journey was wrapping my head around the fact I would no longer be around the people that I’ve known all my life. It was a drastic change between this transition and my transition from high school to undergrad.
What are your goals and aspirations after graduation? Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Once I graduate from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism with my MA in Sports Journalism at ASU, in December 2019, my immediate goal is to become a sports reporter in written, radio, and/or broadcast journalism. In the next five years, as I grow and develop my craft in early career sports reporting, I envision increasing responsibility and roles including (but not limited to) producing content for a broadcast news outlet, covering games, writing feature articles, producing media packages, and reporting via radio, social media “live” platforms and continue to develop via written medium. I hope to gain the skills and experience working for a major (local) station that would help me branch off into live broadcast sports reporting on broader (regional or national) level. ESPN, following in the footsteps of Stuart Scott, is my “dream” career role.
In addition, I have a passion for entrepreneurship and business ventures. Therefore, I will continue to seek out business, entrepreneurial and non-profit community engagement opportunities while growing in my journalistic aptitude. This would allow me to broaden my journalistic leadership while embracing my desire to serve my community beyond my career endeavors. Specifically, I plan to launch non-profit organizations, similar to Student U, to support youth entrepreneurial and journalistic dreams. I would love to sponsor Scholarships and Fellowships opportunities to empower and “give-back” to my community. With this keen appetite for both journalism and sports, my first non-profit will be to engage less-fortunate children with opportunities to develop their skills in the area of sports journalism. I personally would like to mentor young journalists thrive and achieve their goals.
How did you grow as a person from freshman year of undergrad to now, a 1st year graduate student?
My level of maturity has definitely grown. I find myself making decisions I never would’ve been able to make when I was a freshman. I also believe I am much more independent now than I was back then. I’ve gained a lot of things that come with experience. Wisdom, foresight, and patience are probably the three characteristics that stand out the most. My experiences over the years have taught me a lot of things inside and outside of the classroom. I now have a better grasp of “the bigger picture.”
How has Student U had an impact on helping you set and achieve goals throughout your time in graduate school?
Student U’s impact on helping me set and achieve my goals has been immeasurable. I have a great appreciation for Student U’s role in my life. From the first days as rising sixth grader, learning to embrace the excitement-building of Mr. Kimberg and the Team Leaders singing “Joy to the World” at the bridge to enter our amazing day of Summer Enrichment program… to the high school field trips that helped me to better “see” the vision for my future, set goals, and follow my dreams. I could go on and on, but the most critical (lowest) point related to my academic goals and subsequent success was at the beginning of my senior year at Jordan High School. I lost one of my best friends to a tragic car accident, which also came on the heels of two pretty severe concussions in junior year that caused me to have to hang up my football cleats. If it had not been for Student U advocating for me through the challenges of frequent migraines, the IEP’s required, the loss of focus, and the additional personal loss of my maternal grandfather mid-year, I do not believe I would have successfully completed undergraduate program, let alone now admitted and matriculating through one of the most prestigious and rigorous Journalism schools in the nation. I am eternally grateful especially to SU Founder, Mr. Daniel Kimberg, especially . He served as one of my references for ASU graduate school, but I appreciate ALL of the Student U family for their support and their individual places of impact in facilitating Student U’s Mission coming true in my life.
How have you made an impact on your community?
As a recipient of the UNCC 2018 Distinguished Leader Medal, I believe that affirms me as a Leader among my peers on campus at UNCC, meaning I indeed had a great impact in various ways. Whether through SAFE counselor/ mentor, a Student U Leadership Fellow/Mentor, partnerships with the Greater Charlotte arm of the Collegiate 100 organization through mentoring and tutoring at-risk youth at Turning Point Academy, or even in my part-time role as Desk Assistant in Lynch Hall for the last 2 years at UNCC, I believe I shared my “brilliance” in impactful ways . There have been situations where I would seize the opportunity to help a younger student through a difficult situation in their lives, and to encourage and support them in identifying viable and reasonable solutions.
Which of Student U’s core values has been most meaningful in your journey to pursuing your career goals?
I embrace all the core values. They have tremendously helped develop me in both my academic and career goals. It is very challenging to choose between “Dream Fearlessly” and “Share My Brilliance”.
How has your perspective on the world changed since graduating from college?
I guess it’s that “adulting” is real. I am no longer just engrossed in the day-to-day life of being an undergraduate college student, and sharing great times within the proverbial “walls” of my awesome UNC-Charlotte community of friendships and relationships. Now, I see the world from a much broader perspective, my “end-game” is not just to receive that degree. It is truly a life-time goal of becoming all that God has for me to be through my gifts and talents, that will lead to being a great community leader and fulfill my purpose as a brilliant servant-leader.
If you could give a student in the Class of 2023 one piece of advice as they prepare to attend college in the fall, what would it be?
I would advise them to discover and then always maintain a healthy balance of academic focus, physical and emotional health, and their involvement with community service and extracurricular activities. I learned through experience that I can’t do everything that I may be interested in, at least not all at the same time.
Want to get in touch with Mr. Chris? Or learn more about his work? Here is how: