Southern Belle in Training

Fashion, Travel & Lifestyle Blog || Est. 2012 || Virginia Beach, VA

April 14, 2016

Life Updates: My Post-Graduate Plans!

     First off, my apologies for being a mediocre blogger in the last week or so. I feel like there is irony in this since I just recently published a blog post entitled "How to Run a Successful Blog While in College" (which got great feedback from a lot of you!), but clearly I haven't been following my own rules in recent days. Anyways, my graduation date is three short weeks away from today, so I am trying to give myself grace until then, and after that I look forward to jumping back full force into blogging again!

My sorority took senior photos this past weekend!

     Anyways, with graduation on its away, I thought that this was the perfect time for me to share my post-graduate plans with all of you. From time to time, I like to write longer Life Update posts here on the blog. The last time that I did one was I believe around this time last year, when I shared about my plans for last summer, which included an amazing internship in Kentucky, and studying abroad later in the summer! It's crazy for me to think back to that post, because one of the things that I wrote about in it was the fact that I would be graduating a semester late, due to complications with transfer credits. Amazing things can happen in a year, because that whole situation was resolved, and I am so excited to be graduating on-time this May with the rest of my class!

     I like to think of everyone who reads my blog as more than just a reader or follower, but a friend and a part of my life. I wanted to have all of my plans set for post-grad life before I wrote this post, but now that everything is looking pretty official (those of you who follow me on social media outside of my blog know about my new apartment in Charlotte!), it's time for the official blog post. Thank-you in advance to those of you who will take the time to read this! Without further ado:

     Since I was very young, (and wayyyy before I knew what fashion blogging was, or that it could be someone's career), my dream job has been to be a radio DJ. When I was seven years old, my dad had to record a radio commercial for his job one afternoon, which would be airing on the stations that were owned by one of the larger radio groups back home in Maine. My parents let me accompany my dad to the station, and it was one of my favorite memories from childhood! The afternoon DJ gave me a full tour of the studio, and even offered to let me go on-air after my dad finished recording. I was too shy at the time and declined, but instead I got to pick out a special song request to play. (I still remember what I picked "One More Time" by Daft Punk! Haha. Still a good song today.)

     As I grew older and people began asking me more frequently what I wanted to be when I grew up, my mind would often change about what career I thought I would fit into. There was a period of time when I wanted to pursue the education field and another period when I thought about being a print journalist or author. In high school, I thought that the travel industry might provide career options that I would enjoy (And during college, this always remained my back-up plan! I still love to travel, and enjoy writing about my travel adventures on my blog). But everything always came back to my dream career of being on the radio. I didn't have the chance in high school to be exposed to a studio environment, because my town isn't located very close to any of the stations, and at the time that I was in school there weren't really intern programs for high schoolers with the Maine radio stations. (This has since changed though- a station back home now offers high schoolers from schools all over Southern Maine to be on the air every week! I LOVE this and so wish that had been around when I was in high school.)

     When I realized later into my senior year of high school that I wanted to go to college in the South, one of the things that sold me on my original college was the fact that they had an actual radio station as apart of the campus. I was told that students could volunteer their time to work shifts in the station, and then work their way up to hosting their own shows, in which they would have complete creative control over. This was all that I needed to hear as a prospective high school student, and just one of the many reasons that I fell in love with my original college.

     During my very first week as a freshman at my former college, I started work as a volunteer student DJ at the campus radio station. To date, that was one of the best experiences of my entire college career! During the fall semester I was an afternoon show host twice a week, and in the spring semester, I continued this and I also had the chance to host my own show on Monday nights. Getting to finally live out my dream of being on the radio was just incredible.

DJing at my former college's radio station in Fall 2012!

     Obviously I ended up transferring colleges, but my love affair with radio broadcasting only grew once I arrived at my new school in Charlotte. I used to blog more about this in past years, but I was blessed with an incredible internship for four semesters with the Charlotte location of the Ryan Seacrest Foundation. Ryan's charity places closed-circuit radio stations inside of the top children's hospitals across the country, and I loved getting to intern for the Charlotte branch of Seacrest Studios! Getting to be on-air for so long in a hospital radio station was such a unique experience.

My first day at the Ryan Seacrest Foundation! January 2014

My last day after four wonderful semesters at the Ryan Seacrest Foundation! December 2015

     Despite having an incredible internship, as college went on, I didn't feel like I could give my love for radio the time and attention that it deserved. My major at my new college wasn't as broadcasting focused as I hoped. I had the opportunity to take great classes over the past three years which have challenged and educated me in communication studies, in topics such as communication theory, media growth and studies, and journalism, but despite being very academically demanding my new school didn't have a lot to offer specifically related to "broadcasting." During this time, I also became a lot more invested in my blog, which began to take up more time than my internship, and balancing both became difficult!

     As I entered this past semester of college, the real world was fast approaching, and I met with my career advisor to discuss a plan for job searching. At this point, I had ruled out my dream of radio as an option. I knew that staying in Charlotte was very important for me, and I didn't think that I was qualified enough to apply for jobs at Charlotte radio stations since this is such a large market. I had settled for applying to jobs in other facets of communication. I was heavily considering the travel industry again, as well as working in PR for a hospital (since I'd spent so much time interning in one!), or possibly doing communication for a non-profit.

    I filled out some job applications this winter, and I was rejected from everything. Obviously it is normal for students my age to get rejections from applications, but after receiving a few rejections, I realized how un-passionate I was about everything that I was applying to! Even though I hadn't devoted much time to it in the past year, radio was still where my heart was. A piece of me hadn't given up on my dream....

     I am so pleased to announce that my post-graduate plans are to attend broadcasting school! This is an eight-month program, and my term begins later this summer. There are two acclaimed broadcasting school with campuses here in Charlotte, and after researching both, I found the one that best fit my career goals and needs. I applied, got in, and was also blessed to receive a merit scholarship to help cover some of my costs! Attending this program will allow me to build on skills that I learned during my freshman year and also through my internship with RSF, teach me lots of new skills, and give me a competitive edge to be prepared to enter the industry at this time next year. I will also receive lots of educating and training in the TV field, so should I decide that this is the direction that I would prefer to pursue, I can also go in that route!

     While in broadcasting school, I will be continuing to nanny and babysit for different families in Charlotte. I've been babysitting part time since transferring schools, and I've been lucky to develop wonderful relationships with some of the families that I work for. This is a flexible job that pays well, and I'm excited to have more time to work than I did while in undergrad!

     And lastly, I can't wait to finally give this blog the full time and attention that it deserves. I am proud of all the blogging that I was able to accomplish during four years of school, but school always did come first for me. I have so many ideas for my website that I have never had the time to implement- and now is the time when I can finally devote myself more to Southern Belle in Training! Big things are on the way.

     My dream career (now) would be to someday be a syndicated radio night show host with my home base located here in Charlotte, and to be blogging full-time during the days. I have a tentative five year plan- we will see how that goes!

     If you made it to the end of this very long post- thank-you! This ended up being a lot longer than I intended, but I thought that I should truly give my career aspirations the type of heartfelt and detailed post that they really do deserve.

     Here's to the last three weeks of college!

      xoxo Miss ALK



  1. How exciting! I'm so happy to hear that you have found something you're passionate and excited about. I think that's the thing that terrifies me. I'm graduating next year (hopefully) and it terrifies me that I am still unsure of what i want to do.

    I wish you all the luck with your post grad life and hopefully we'll get to meet up real soon!
    Amy | Pastel N Pink

  2. Such exciting plans, congratulations! After-college plans I feel like are the hardest, and I can't wait to see what great things you do!
    Good luck with your last 3 weeks!

  3. Wow - go you, girl!!! I'm so happy that you are attending broadcasting school and following your life long dream. If you didn't I'm sure you'd always look back and think 'what if'. I always dreamed of being a marketer and there were so many obstacles and No's I had to overcome to get to where I am in my career. I always encourage womenin college to follow thier dreams. The more peristent you are, the more things will fall in place. I'm so excited to follow along on this next adventure. Xoxo Mindy

  4. So wonderful to read this post. I truly felt like I have been able to get to know you from your blog and it makes me so happy to see you chasing your dreams. I think the broadcasting program you are pursuing will be such a wonderful way to equip yourself with the skills and knowledge you need to work in broadcasting. I can't wait to see what happens and where your hard work takes you. Congratulations!!!!

  5. Congrats on broadcasting school! You definitely have the potential to make full-time blogging a thing!

  6. How exciting to get into a broadcasting program! It really sounds like you are passionate about it...which is awesome. I know you will do well. Enjoy graduation and don't worry about blog posts. :)

  7. This is all so exciting!! Being a college senior myself, I can totally relate to the anxiety that comes with figuring out what you're going to do with your life after college. Congrats on having a set plan, and bonus on the financial blessings!

    Class Meets Couture

  8. I love that your continuing your childhood dream of being a radio broadcaster! Congratulations on (almost) graduating and starting the broadcasting program! You're going to do fabulous things and I can't wait to follow along here on your blog! So exciting! xx Merisa | Monogrammed Magnolias

  9. Congrats on graduating and getting into broadcast school! I hope to hear you on the radio one day :)


  10. You are the cutest! Congrats on everything. I can't wait to see where you go and the things you will accomplish!
    The Fashionista's Diary

  11. Congratulations on broadcasting school! It's wonderful to hear that you are sticking to your dream!

    Ane | Basque Prep

  12. Wow! Congrats on getting into broadcasting school and how amazing was it that you got to intern at the Ryan Seacrest hospital radio. Good luck and can't wait to read more about your journey this summer.

  13. I can't wait to see where life takes you!

  14. Congratulations on getting into broadcasting school, it sounds like it's going to be a ton of fun. I can't wait to read more about how everything turns out!


  15. Wow girl!!! You go. Nothing better than someone following their dreams. Can't wait to continue to follow along!

    Sara Kate Styling

  16. You always seem so happy when you share anything broadcast related. I know you will do AMAZING in school.


  18. How exciting! I have so many friends in broadcasting school and they absolutely love it! Congrats on staying in the South! I hope you continue to love it and love your new adventure even more!


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