Amazing Students

Charlotte Norsworthy

Charlotte Norsworthy (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker/UGA)

Charlotte Norsworthy has already racked up two bachelor’s degrees, numerous awards and scholarships and is now working on her master’s in journalism. Her passion is communication — presenting information in an understandable way — because she believes knowledge is power.

Savannah, Ga

High school:
Liberty County High School

Current employment:
Morris Master’s Fellow
Content director for The Outlaw Ocean Project

Expected graduation:
Fall 2020

Degree objective:
Master’s in journalism

Other degrees:
Bachelor’s in journalism, bachelor’s in political science

University highlights, achievements, awards and scholarships:
My collegiate career at the University of Georgia has granted me more opportunity than I could have ever imagined.

I started my time at UGA heavily involved in Student Government Association, Shop With a Bulldog, Tate Society and The Red & Black newspaper. Through these organizations I was able to engage with the Athens community and learn my new home. I was able to give back to the community through community service activities and through engaging journalism. I served as the city news editor and later news editor of the paper, where I worked to reach audiences that are underserved, such as low-income children and the immigrant rights community.

I was a recipient of the Honors International Scholarship in 2017 for my study abroad trip to Prague, Czech Republic, studying travel writing. While in Prague, I was able to write stories on the city’s urbanization and its struggles to fuel a growing tourism industry while maintaining its historic landscape and architecture. To this day, this trip is one of my favorite memories at UGA.

From there, I interned with Cartoon Network, Adult Swim and Boomerang in Atlanta, where I first felt the power of the alumni network at UGA. Alumni that I had never met went out of their way to meet with me and show me the ropes. Key resources such as professors and the Career Center helped prepare me for this opportunity, and passionate alumni met me at the door to help me succeed.

Throughout my time as an undergrad at UGA, I graciously received scholarships that helped fund my studies: the Lanier E. Finch Scholarship, the Conrad E. Fink Scholarship, the Georgia Press Association Scholarship, the William H. Fields Scholarship and the M. Tyus Butler Scholarship.

I was also a recipient of the Honors in Washington Scholarship in 2018, which enabled me to accept an internship with National Public Radio through a fellowship with the James. M. Cox Institute in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication. That summer, I wrote stories for the business desk on employment and international trade. This experience solidified my love for storytelling and the need for truthful, fair journalism. That same summer I participated in the Journalism in the Era of Disinformation Fellowship. Eight students from the U.S. and eight from Germany were selected to participate while we interviewed with news organizations in New York City and Washington, D.C. Yet another experience that detailed the urgency and necessity of collaborative journalism.

My senior year, I was awarded the WSB Radio Award and the Abney Honors Award, which is an award granted to a senior student in the Grady College with the most impressive record in the Honors Program. This award meant the world to me because I applied into the Honors Program after my first semester freshman year. After being accepted, I took full advantage of all of the opportunities that the Honors Program offers, such as scholarships and research opportunities.

I participated in CURO research for the entirety of my sophomore and junior years in both journalism and political science. I worked under the direction of associate professor Anthony Madonna with CURO in fall 2016, spring 2017, fall 2017 and fall 2018 semesters studying congressional policy and amendment procedure during landmark enactments. In journalism, I was able to complete my undergraduate thesis on virtual reality as an effective storytelling medium under the direction of assistant professor Ivanka Pjesivac.

I have also found community in the honors societies I have been invited to: Tate Society, Palladia Women’s Society, Sphinx Society and Blue Key Honors Society.

Since graduating from UGA in spring 2019, I decided I couldn’t leave Athens. I am back as a master’s student studying journalism. I am currently serving as the Morris Master’s Fellow for the Cox Institute. One of the best decisions I could have made was sticking around the best university in the world. As a Master’s Fellow, I am able to continue my research interests while also continuing to host the Cox Institute’s podcast, “The Lead.” Since starting my master’s, I have been able to co-edit a book based on the podcast called “News Leadership: Conversations about Journalism and its Future.” The book was published by Kendall Hunt Academic Publishing in November 2019.

I chose to attend UGA because …
… I knew I would feel challenged and supported. After visiting the campus my junior year of high school, I felt a connection to the campus and Athens community. I saw opportunities to succeed intellectually and to develop as a servant leader. The sheer wealth of resources combined with the spirit of this university are what sold me.

My favorite things to do on campus are … 
… hitting up the Jittery Joe’s in Baldwin Hall and then hanging out in the Honors Student Lounge in Moore College to get some work done. I am a sucker for big windows with pretty views on the other side of them, and I’ll say North Campus provides a pretty stunning view!

When I have free time, I like … 
… to walk my dogs at Oconee Forest Park behind the intramural fields. This hidden gem right by campus feels like our own special spot. If you see me with my headphones in, I am usually listening to a podcast, audio-book or some form of classical music. Recently, it’s been Verdi’s “Requiem” because the UGA choirs will be performing it in April. I have always loved classical singing, piano and guitar since I was younger, and this is a passion I’ve been able to continue while on campus. Be sure to come to our choir performance!

Finally, if I’m honest, I am a huge homebody! Nothing beats a night in with a pizza, a good book (recently for me it’s been “Home Work” by Julie Andrews) or a good film. My current list of films I’m watching include “Just Mercy,” “Harriet” and “A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.” (Tom Hanks is my favorite ever.)

Charlotte Norsworthy (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker/UGA)

The craziest thing I’ve done is …
… take a weekend trip to Venice, Italy! While studying abroad in Prague, we had one free weekend. Venice had been on my bucket list, especially given the state of the city as water levels continue to rise. I knew that if I never returned to Europe again, I would have to visit Venice. The problem was, only one flight per day left from Prague to Venice. So, a couple of friends and I ditched class that Friday (with clearance from the professor) to fly to Venice for essentially 36 hours. It was a whirlwind trip, but it was so worth it. I will cherish that time forever!

My favorite place to study is …
… the Milledge Hall study rooms! I used to live in these rooms while studying French for several semesters. Expo markers and the whiteboards in Milledge Hall helped me memorize term after term — conjugation after conjugation. No distractions, great focus space. Dieu merci!

My favorite professor is … 
I have had so many incredible professors that have provided me with priceless advice and opportunity, such as Anthony Madonna, Ann Hollifield, Ivanka Pjesivac and others. To these professors and others, thank you for helping me through the rollercoaster of college. However, the professor that I have grown the closest to is Keith Herndon.

Dr. Herndon and I met when I was a sophomore as I was the newly elected president of ONA & SPJ at UGA, a student professional journalism chapter. Neither of us could have anticipated where things would lead from there. I have traveled across the U.S., co-edited a book, co-written academic conference papers, received fellowships with The New York Times’ Ian Urbina and NPR, hosted a podcast, received scholarships and even received my current graduate assistantship, all because of Dr. Herndon’s support. He has truly made my time at UGA extraordinary because he is extraordinary. Dr. Herndon — thank you for everything. I am indebted to you!

If I could share an afternoon with anyone, I would love to share it with …
… Julie Andrews. As I mentioned earlier, my heart lies with performing arts. Julie was one of my first sources of inspiration to pursue music in any way I could — to hold it close to me. She also seems to have life and the meaning of it all figured out. She has such grace and gives so much back to underserved communities. I would love to take a page out of her book. Her favorite phrase is “How lucky are we?” I feel truly humbled, lucky and blessed.

If I knew I could not fail, I would …
… find a cure for prematurity in babies. My mother lost a child to prematurity before I was born, and my younger brother was born several weeks premature resulting in a six-week stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. I have spent the past 13 years hand-sewing baby blankets and donating them to NICUs across the United States. While this is fulfilling, I would love to be able to do more for these families. I would love to be able to help families deliver healthy, full-term babies and grant them access to top-notch health care regardless of if they can afford it.

If money was not a consideration, I would love to … 
… go to space. NASA: call me.

All jokes aside (though all jokes are half-truths, right?), after ensuring my family’s financial stability, I would invest in developing impoverished communities in the United States in order to break childhood poverty cycles. I’d love to be able to give kids a fighting chance to pursue their dreams without structural setbacks.

What is your passion and how are you committed to pursuing it?
My passion is communication. Communication is one of the most powerful tools on Earth because it enables us to see and understand other perspectives, through music, journalism or face-to-face. There is always room to improve communication, and one way I hope to contribute to that is through journalism. My goal is to be able to present information to Americans in a way that they can understand it. For I believe knowledge is power, but that power is only granted through understanding of different perspectives. If we can open our minds to different perspectives and truly try to understand the message, I believe we can accomplish anything as a society.

After graduation, I plan to … 
… hit the ground running working on journalism projects I care about.

The one UGA experience I will always remember will be … 
Graduating in Sanford Stadium in May 2019. There truly ain’t nothing finer in the land.