“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves.who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be?-Marianne Williamson
Greetings GSU, my name is Angela Reknee Casson. I am a senior Mass Communication major. Dreams do come true! And yes that saying you were told as a child is true.you really can be and have anything in this world that you so desire, seek, work for and pray about!At age seven.I told my mom Wanda Porter who is a nursing major here at GSU that when I grew up I wanted to be Oprah.not be like Oprah.but be Oprah and work for CNN. We often laugh about this.
Now at age 22 my dreams are now become a fast paste reality.
Many ask me “How”.how did you make your dreams your reality. I often smile and say “G.g”
“Gg” is the nick name that my mom gave me after she saw how I was able to achieve the unthinkable. “Gg” stands for Gods girl. It’s one thing to go to church all of your life but it’s a brand new world when you really start to trust, believe and rely on God’s word.
My journey began at the GSU TV Center under the direction of Mr. Allan Blakney. It was there that I mastered my trade. I attended every workshop, every editing session, every lighting session, every football game & basketball game production. It was here that I learned the importance of relationships. Always respecting your peers as well as your teachers goes along way. I wasn’t perfect, but I paid attention and listened.I listened to everything. It is because of Allan Blakney and my mom that I am able to deal with any attitude, any negativity and every personality positively.
As my sophomore year came I applied for an internship with CNN. I sent in over 50 applications with different cover letters.
No one came to me and said “Oh let me find you an internship sweetie.” This is something I wanted.so I had to make it happen for me! CNN didn’t respond via email or to any of my online applications. I then got on the phone and started making things happen. One phone interview to the next finally someone on the other end of the phone said we have one internship left with CNN and it’s with CNN New Orleans. There probably won’t be much to do so you may just want to enjoy your summer and relax at home and try again next summer”. I smiled and said, No. I’ll be there!
Having no family or friends in New Orleans, I was blessed to have my grandparents offer to pay for my housing accommodation. CNN New Orleans really didn’t have a lot to do if you weren’t a proactive person. I found and made stuff for myself to do. I networked; I gained respect and an opportunity to be CNN Soledad O’Brien’s intern while she visited New Orleans for Black in America2. After the awesome internship Soledad asked me what I wanted to do after graduating college. I told her move to New York and become an associate producer for CNN. She then asked did I know what an associate producer did and if not I should come to New York and be her intern as well as work with her associate producer.
I’d never been to New York alone, but I knew this was my once in a lifetime chance. I went on craigslist found me somewhere to stay, flew to New York in December might I add.cold.cold and extremely cold. I’d never rode a subway before, but I prayed every day for direction and as a result I figured out how to get to CNN and back to the apartment I had sublet every day. I was so scared, but I knew God had some great thing in store for me so I tried not to think about my fear of being in a big city alone and focused on being the best intern out of thousands at CNN New York.
After this internship I came back to GSU for another semester and applied for a job with KNOE T.V 8 in Monroe. I’d call everyday.and speak with the News Director. She’d tell me they had no available positions but to keep in touch. Six months later I was hired as an associate producer part time.
In the meantime the previous SGA president Steven Jackson, asked me to serve as co-chair on a committee set to bring CNN Soledad O’Brien to GSU. The committee then nominated me to host the event. I was so honored. William Burg and I were in charge of picking Soledad up from the airport taking her to her hotel and assisting her in whatever she needed. The next morning after the event, on the way to the airport Soledad invited me to come and stay with her in her home this past summer and do something’s with her at CNN. Staying at Soledad’s home this past summer in Manhattan, NY was somewhere beyond awesome! She and her husband both treated me as their family.
After the internship I came back to GSU and went back to work at KNOE. After three months of working as a part time associate producer for KNOE “Gg” was promoted to full time as the morning producer at KNOE. I currently produce the entire two hour segment of Good morning ArkLaMiss and I am in charge of booking all of my guests to come on the show. I love my salary butmost importantly I love my job!
Since then several producers with CNN have reached out to me.as a result I will be producing for CNN New York after graduating college in December.
I’d like to thank every hand that held me, every wallet that paid my bills, every mouth that encouraged and inspired me: God, my mom (Wanda Porter),Grandparents, Soledad Obrien, KNOE Executives, Mr. Allan Blakney, Ms. Joyce Evans, Dr. Ford-Dunn,Dr. Frank Pogue,LaMarsha Porter, Coach Ponton, Cierra Handspard, Madonna Morris, Rayshan Hobdy and Terrence Lanheart. I’ll never be ever to repay or thank you all, but I promise to keep my life on track and give back everything that you all have instilled in me.
GSU tigers be proud of your little school in the country, it may be small but it is known all across the country. I am so proud to be able to say I’m a tiger!
GSU has done so much for me! What will you do for GSU? “Gg”.plans to give it all back.GSU!