Abby Byrne
Fall 2019 – Junior
Expected Graduation – Spring 2021

Throughout my high school years, I found a passion for theatre. I began my theatre career with acting, but became interested in producing and directing. I worked extremely hard but did not reap the rewards; my hard work was disregarded and I faced discrimination because of nepotism.

I was no longer welcome in the theatre department and although I have no vocal or dance ability, I turned to the music department. I was the company manager for show choir (a competitive singing and dancing group) and I produced multiple musicals. There, I was given the opportunity to grow as a producer and a leader. I was challenged and the constant effort that I put into everything paid off. After producing and taking film classes in high school, I knew that I would not be satisfied with my life if I did not pursue film.

I have grown exponentially since then. I am confident in my scriptwriting, filming, and editing abilities, as well as my ability to effectively collaborate with and direct others. I am dedicated and work hard to make entertaining and moving works. One of my main driving forces is my passion. While my passion can be a strength, it can be challenging. I pour my heart and soul into everything that I do on and off of the University of Tampa campus, but the work that I put into my non-academic activities can be extremely time consuming. At this point in time, I consider myself to be somewhat behind other students. I work hard in class and always produce projects to the best of my ability and while I may be on track with my technical skills, I do not have the on set experience that many of my peers do. Although I may be a bit behind with experience, I am pursuing internships and on set experience as I head into my later college years.

When reflecting on those who have impacted my educational experience at the University of Tampa, two professors come to mind. Gregg Perkins is my advisor and I have taken many classes with him. His teaching methods and advice have helped shape me into a stronger film maker. I took a class with Aaron Walker and he has given me a lot of perspective on the industry. Professor Walker’s excitement for film and teaching make this class so fun and interesting. Time flies in the four hour lecture and the content is applicable to other types of film. These courses have given me tools that make me feel prepared to move forward in my future as a film maker.

A class that I particularly enjoy is Producing for Motion Pictures and Digital Media (FMX 342). I saw myself with a future in producing and this class allows me to learn more and put my experience to use. I expect that I will continue to hone my skills in my classes this semester as well as in my remaining three semesters. After I graduate, I picture myself working for a company that focuses on film projects. I could see myself working as a producer in the future. I will stop at nothing to pursue my passions and UT has helped me grow to be more dedicated and knowledgeable.