From Chick-Fil-A to ABC

A journey fueled by hard work and commitment

Nick Smiling

A journey fueled by hard work and commitment

Stembler Scholar Nick Perlin ’21 didn’t know if his hard work would ever pay off. Two and a half years ago he was at Howard Community College in Columbia, Maryland, and working full time as a shift manager at Chick-fil-A. Then, one day he received his acceptance letter to UNC-Chapel Hill — the first sign of his commitment paying off.

“I can’t believe that I was able to make a dream of mine a reality,” he said. “I never in a million years thought that I’d be able to come to Carolina. And here I am. It’s amazing. It’s surreal. I put my cap and gown on and realized this is really happening. I really did this.”

While at Carolina, Nick learned valuable skills that would aid him in his journey to becoming a news reporter. He gained experience creating content through the UNC Hussman School of Media and Journalism, where he anchored at Sports Xtra and Carolina Week and worked on a documentary focusing on Carolina’s field hockey team. Prior to his graduation, he acquired a job at a local ABC station in Baton Rouge, Louisiana as a news reporter and multimedia journalist.

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