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Trish Higgins, who works for CNN in Atlanta,
graduated from the USF School of Mass

Alumni Spotlight: Trish Higgins

Every piece of video that is received at CNN's headquarters in Atlanta passes through a person or system that Trish Higgins oversees.

Higgins, a mass communication graduate of the print-journalism sequence, is now the Media Coordinator Supervisor in the Image and Sound Department at CNN.

"For me, journalism is something that's just in my blood and I can't stay away from it," she said.

While she was attending the University of South Florida, Higgins interned and freelanced for the Tampa Tribune. She also contributed to The Oracle, as a staff writer. She even scooped a story that the Tampa Tribune and St. Petersburg Times wrote two days after she had initially reported the story.

Higgins was impacted by one of her advanced writing professors who recently retired, Randy Miller.

On the first day of class, Miller told the students that they were all there because someone had probably told them they were a good writer, however, he was there to prove that it was not the case, Higgins said.

"He was tough and he didn't really cut you any slack and he really demanded excellence," she said. "His teaching had a huge impact on my career."

After graduation, Higgins studied abroad in Scotland for three months. While her goal was to become an international newspaper correspondent, she ended up applying for an entry level position at CNN.

She joined the CNN team in July 2001, right before the moment she feels changed her -- Sept. 11, 2001.

"It changed the news business, it changed CNN, and it really changed my outlook and my career progression from that point forward," she said. "Once that happened things at CNN… got crazy. Everybody was required to work 12 hours a day, six days straight. As journalists none of us wanted to say no."

Higgins shed some light on the current state of the changing industry.

"Anybody coming out of school now whether in print, television or even web, has to think okay how can I make my content… compelling to people regardless of how they chose to view it, read it, see it, consume it," she said.

Filed under:Arts and Sciences Arts and Sciences Alumni Mass Communications School of Social Sciences  
Author: Amanda Stone