Three students in Georgia College’ s December 2016 graduating class have risen to the top. The valedictorians are Angela Moryan, a mass communication major who has taken nearly every opportunity her major provides; Breon Haskett, who by chance found his calling for sociology and mentorship; and Lizzie Perrin, who honed her skills as a scriptwriter by gaining different perspectives along the way.
It’s hard to imagine there’s a facet of mass communication that Angela Moryan hasn’t tried to conquer. The senior has spent her time at Georgia College trying to “do it all.”
“I did basically everything I could,” said Moryan. “It just so happens I managed to fall into leadership positions along the way.”
Moryan says leadership comes naturally to her. The Peachtree City native has a penchant for honesty—a trait that has served her well in leadership positions and is also her inspiration for going into journalism.
“I want to tell the truth and provide the facts,” said Moryan. “My approach is to present this information and let people decide what they think for themselves.”
During her time at Georgia College, Moryan has been an integral part of the student newspaper, serving on the Colonnade’s editorial board. She also served as a writer, then entertainment editor and, most recently, sports editor. She was also able to attend College Media Association conferences three times.
“It’s funny, because I can remember my first Colonnade meeting and how they entrusted me with the story idea that I came to them with,” said Moryan. “Now to be able to be on the other side of it and witness production nights at the paper—it’s really come full circle.”
Moryan says her investigative fervor comes largely from her father, a retired Army forensics detective.
“I want to find those harder stories, those stories that seem to be covered up,” said Moryan. “For me, it’s about uncovering the truth.”
Moryan has also been a DJ on WGUR, anchored for GC360, had her photography published, served as president of Thunder Crew, spent two months studying abroad in Italy, had photos from her time in Italy place 1st and 3rd in the GC International Photo Contest and completed a successful internship with WTOC in Savannah.
Most recently, she zeroed in on her passion for sports. An avid sports fan growing up, Moryan says the family television was constantly set to either news or sports— so for her, it’s a natural progression. While she came into Georgia College knowing she wanted to pursue sports broadcasting, her time spent as sports editor of the Colonnade and now working in athletics solidified that pursuit.
Moryan serves as the Athletic Department's Sports Information Assistant, taking on the task of media liaison for Bobcat Volleyball, Men's Basketball and Men's and Women's Tennis. After graduation, she plans to remain with Georgia College Athletics but eventually enter into the sports broadcast industry.
Senior Breon Haskett had a plan as soon as he stepped foot on Georgia College’s campus. He was going to get an English degree, teach the subject and coach high school basketball.
“I was confident in that plan,” said the Kennesaw, Georgia, native. “But then I took an intro to sociology class my sophomore year.”
The English and sociology double major quickly changed gears as he realized the subject brought out his natural talents. One of the first experiences he had was an assignment to simply people watch.
“I was always a little more shy, so to have that assignment and to be able to use skills that I already have to learn more about the world - it was the best experience I could ask for.”
Since then, he’s taken several courses that have impacted his college experience. He also presented research on affirmative action attitudes toward government spending at the Southern Society Sociology annual conference in April 2016.
Another important part of Haskett’s experience at Georgia College was serving on the executive board of MALE (Mentoring African-Americans for Leadership and Education) Connection. The program pairs college students with Georgia College Early College and High Achiever students. The experience reinforced Haskett’s belief he was called to teach.
“It’s inspired me to want to teach more,’ said Haskett. “My hope is that I can inspire them by showing them actual data that proves why and how their actions now matter. I want to continue to teach and make a better future.”
Haskett, who also won honorable mention for an essay written about the importance of liberal arts, says he is grateful for the opportunities he’s had at the university.
“I found that I could enhance my experience by pairing seemingly unlike courses with each other,” said Haskett. “My experience in a GC2Y equity and justice course could easily be applied to courses where we’re discussing Ghandi and Kant.”
Looking to the future, Haskett is applying to graduate schools all over the U.S. He wants to continue the mentoring and teaching he started at Georgia College and pair it with his love of sociology.
“Learning is rad,” said Haskett. “I like books and any experience I had where I had to teach. I’ve been fulfilled, so I want to continue that.”
Senior English major Lizzie Perrin knew exactly what she wanted to pursue during her first year at Georgia College.
“Ever since elementary school, I knew I wanted to be a writer,” said the Canton, Georgia, native. “I started watching ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ in junior year, and that was the first time I saw how powerful and influential scriptwriting can be. The depth of character and levels of ambiguity that was achieved was inspiring.”
Perrin has been involved in the Honors program and credits it largely for making a close knit circle of friends during her time here. She’s also been heavily involved with Wesley Foundation, an organization she attributes to her “spiritual walk in faith” while attending Georgia College.
Perrin has also been part of Peacocks Feet, the university's undergraduate literary and creative arts journal. She has served as the poetry editor and, this year, as the Red Early Reading chair.
“It’s been a great experience to have the opportunity to read a lot of my peers’ work,” said Perrin. “Another wonderful thing about this major is that I’ve been exposed to so many perspectives and cultures through my courses. It’s made me more open minded, empathetic and given me the ability to wear many hats as a writer.”
A thirst for greater perspective also led Perrin to study abroad for a semester during her sophomore year. She spent spring 2015 in Plymouth, England.
“That was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had,” said Perrin. “I was able to be fully immersed in the culture, make friends and take literature classes abroad.”
After graduation Perrin plans to pursue film school where she will eventually enter the film industry.
What attracted Perrin to Georgia College in the beginning is what the senior looks back on as a graduating senior: the personal learning experience and close relationships she was able to make.