May Student Spotlight



May Student Spotlight:  Skylar Nicholson

College and Career Academy: Central Educational Center

Skylar’s Story:

I can say without a doubt that my local college and career academy, Central Educational Center(CEC), has changed my life.

Three short years ago, I became a student at CEC. On my first day of classes at CEC, I became fully enthralled with the audio and broadcasting program. In this program I had the opportunity to work with industry professionals, receive hands on experience, and get to learn in two fully functioning professional film studios. After completing classes and getting the base knowledge of audio & broadcasting, I then began to branch off and started producing my own projects.

“I am the youngest intern that Georgia Public Broadcasting has ever accepted”

With the training I received from the CEC, I was able to apply and obtain an internship with Georgia Public Broadcasting and work three to four days a week, from nine to five. Being an intern, I got to assist with all aspects of production. I worked in the pre-production, editing, and live production departments. I also got to be the on air talent from time to time. I have been a host for their pledge broadcasts, behind the scene of the “Shuler’s” broadcast, and multiple scientific broadcasts.

I was sixteen when I first started. All of my colleagues who were interns had just graduated from college. I was brought on part time in January of 2017, and started working on the show “LawMakers”. This show covered the daily legislative changes at the capitol. I am so thankful to have the opportunity to work in the corporate world at such a young age. Being in this type of environment has instilled important principles of work ethic, and required me to perform with a high level of professionalism.

In the summer of 2016, I got to be a part of a Turner Broadcasting Media Institute. This was an immersive experience at Turner where I was able to be a part of innovative discussions and was able to present pitch ideas for changes in the company. Also, in the summer of 2016, I was chosen as one of four video production journalist from around the world to participate in the Grammy Foundation’s “Grammy Camp”, held in NYC for two weeks. I produced and wrote videos about up and coming artists for the National Recording Academy. This was an incredible opportunity to get to work with some of the top video professionals in the industry.

Up next, I will be an interning this summer with CNN, and will be working on the show "Headline News".


I also had internships with Creative Studios of Atlanta and New Link Communications. I have been able to produce multiple Public Service Announcements that highlight different issues in my local community. I was recognized by the Southeastern Emmy Awards (Student Production Awards), and won two awards in 2015, and received a nomination for the directing category in 2016.

This year, I was recognized and won three awards and two nominations for my own original content that I produced. I also was recognized by the Atlanta Business Chronicle in 2017 as one of the "20 under 20" in Atlanta, and in turn won a Georgia Youth Leadership Award.

Central Educational Center’s Impact on Skylar’s Life:

During my time at Central Educational Center(CEC), I was taught the skill set that every strong leader should have. I am now currently an ambassador for 21st Century Leaders, an organization that promotes leadership qualities in the state of Georgia.

I have learned so many skills that will help me for years to come. My core support system, besides my parents, has been Central Educational Center(CEC). My college and career academy has provided me the resources to set me on a path for success. They have listened to my dreams and have encouraged and helped me obtain them while still in high school.  I have not only learned to step out of my comfort zone, and to dream big, but to also thrive in any environment. Furthermore, I’ve gained invaluable work and post-high school experiences while still being enrolled in high school through my local college and career academy.

What’s Next for Skylar:

I’ve taken classes at West Georgia Tech and the University of West Georgia while at the CEC, completing 36 hours of dual enrollment college credit. I have been able to save my parents a lot of money and I have also saved a significant amount time by completing core college courses during high school. I will be entering the University of Georgia in the fall of 2017 as a Junior.

I chose to go to UGA because they would take all of my dual enrollment credit, and it is one of the top five programs in the country. I am delighted to continue my education while staying in my home state. Thanks to the CEC, I had a flexible schedule which allowed me to have internships and real life work experiences.

My local college and career academy has changed my outlook on the workforce and my future. I now feel more equipped when graduating high school in May to enter into a new chapter of life, and ultimately be a viable contributor in the Georgia workforce.