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This month I had the privilege of working with a wonderful professor at Belmont University, Sara Wigal who is the Director of Publishing, to create a series for their school’s WELL-Core program. WELL-Core offers students a variety of classes, in exchange for credits, to help them become more well-rounded individuals. While we were catching up on the phone one day, Sara suggested that I put together a video interview series called “Word of Mouth: Belmont University Conversations” featuring folks I admire in which they talked about professional development skills like organization, how to create a schedule, and drum up clients. This idea resonated with me because, as much as I believe in formal education, I learned most of my lessons in the real world. Personally, I learned how to write and, most importantly, find people to publish my work through interning and being mentored by more established editors and writers.

In this series, I interviewed singer-songwriter Jenny Leigh, whose music video “Old Oak Tree” I acted in earlier this year, filmmaker Jason Hensley, owner of McCosh Films, entrepreneur, technologist, and first-time author Marcus Whitney, and real estate broker Elam Freeman. My goal was to have diversity in terms of career paths, candor when it came to talking about the ups-and-downs of everyone’s professional paths, and to relate the advice to a college-aged audience. My hope is that this two-part series inspires Belmont students to pursue their interests in a passionate, practical way.

You can view the full-length videos here. Thanks again to Belmont for allowing all of us to share our hard-knocks wisdom with the student body.

Video editing by Abigail Bowen

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Lily Clayton Hansen

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