Our students have gone on to successful careers. Read about the experiences of two of our recent graduates — Olalekan Dada and Amy Roberts — and how their studies at UAB prepared them for successful careers.

Olalekan Dada in the UAB Digital Media soundlab. Olalekan Dada

I work as a Proposal Coordinator at Rite Way Service. Rite Way Service is a national provider of janitorial and other facility maintenance services with active customers in all 50 states. Headquartered here in Birmingham, Rite Way offers facility maintenance service to many of the large corporations in downtown Birmingham, including the Regions and Wells Fargo Towers.

My position requires me to synthesize information from a variety of sources in order to create proposals for potential clients. These proposals act as marketing material that represent the entire Rite Way corporation, so it is imperative that there be no typos, grammatical errors, or misinformation that could ruin our chances of conducting business with the client. Along with making sure the proposal is grammatically correct, I also must make sure that the proposal is appealing to the potential client. Information must be clearly stated, easy to locate, and not overwhelming. Also, with the expansion of our company, it is even more important that our written material be perfect.

I can honestly say that I would not be able to do what I am doing at Rite Way if it were not for the UAB English Department. The Professional Writing program exposed me to various ways of communicating with different audiences and the importance of knowing the most effective way to deliver information. In this era of information overload, it is important to be able to package your material in a way that makes your audience recognize the importance of the material. With the technical knowledge, research skills, and writing practice I received from the Professional Writing program, I am able to do just that. The Professional Writing program at UAB has proven to me, and my employer, the importance and value of an English degree.

Amy Roberts

I am the Communications Coordinator at Growing Kings, a non-profit organization that was started in 2009. We provide school-based, group mentoring programs for at-risk males in Birmingham City Schools. Our programs focus on character development, violence prevention, and personal enrichment. We are based on a high school feeder pattern, so we can provide long-term engagement with our students from 4th grade through high school. Currently, Growing Kings is in five Birmingham City Schools, with plans to be in 10 by fall 2014.

As Communications Coordinator, I am in charge of our social media platforms, but my priority is developing a fundraising strategy for the program. My first project was to submit an application for our first federal grant proposal, where we are looking to partner with the Department of Justice Sciences at UAB. Below are some of the things I do in the position:

  • Develop and implement an integrated strategic communications plan to advance Growing Kings' brand identity; broaden awareness of its programs and priorities; and increase the visibility of its programs across key stakeholder audiences.
  • Serve as communications counselor to Growing Kings' leadership.
  • Oversee development of all print communications.
  • Work closely with the Executive Director on donor management and fund development.
  • Develop and oversee day-to-day activities of all Growing Kings' social media outlets.
  • Actively engage, cultivate, and manage press relationships to ensure coverage surrounding Growing Kings' programs, special events, public announcements, and other projects.
  • Research funding sources and trends, with foresight, to get ahead of major funding changes.

I am indebted to the Professional Writing program at UAB. Had it not been for the wonderful professors and classes I wouldn't be where I am. The wealth of knowledge I gained from Dr. Bacha, Dr. Ryan, Dr. Wells, and Dr. McComiskey is immeasurable. I've made a lot of great connections in my short time with Growing Kings and every time my boss introduces me to people or I tell them I'm a Professional Writer and this is what I can do, they are so impressed.SaveSaveSave