One of the many distinguished honors given at the University of West Georgia (UWG) is the “30 Under 30” award. This award honors professional faculty and staff members that have successfully entered their career field before the age of 30.
Of those that have received this award, many have been UWG alumni that entered the university with different dreams and career aspirations. Because of their love for UWG, they some decided to stay and give back by becoming full-time faculty members. One alumni in particular had the dream of becoming a professional baseball player, but his love and admiration for sports and event management led him to follow a different career path and to stay at UWG.
Jeremy Sheffield is the event coordinator for the UWG Coliseum. While he has not yet received the award, at the age of 25, he holds a prominent position at UWG. His position allows him to supervise 25-30 undergrad students that are responsible for the set-up and takedown of equipment for games and events. He also makes sure on-campus and off-campus clients are in compliance with UWG and Coliseum policies before hosting the event.
“We go over the paperwork and tell them what can happen and what can’t happen,” said Sheffield. “I am also responsible for risk management during events and employing and termination of our student workers.”
A native of Leesburg, Ga., Sheffield entered UWG in 2008 on an athletic scholarship to play baseball. He majored in Business Management and is currently working towards earning his Master’s in Business Administration. Along with playing baseball, Sheffield was a student employee all four years and worked with sports management.
As far as future career or life goals, Sheffield stated he has no specific goals but always has the desire to continue learning new things every day.
“I really don’t have any set plans in regards to where I want to be or where I want to go,” said Sheffield. “I don’t have a specific spot I want to be in as long as I never stop learning.”
Sheffield success came in part of his drive and passion to enter his career once he graduated college. His desire to be successful in the workplace allowed him to execute his plan to graduate in four years as well as receive quality work-related experience.
During my four years, I received good experience to lead me to where I am today,” he said. “It gave me the building blocks into becoming successful and land a job right after college.”
Since coming to UWG in 2008, Sheffield has seen and experienced the growth of the campus. With the additions of two new residence halls, School of Nursing, the Coliseum and increases in student enrollment in just a six-year period, he said he is excited for the direction that campus is headed.
“Ever since I’ve been here there has always been construction fences going up or going down with something new being added,” he said. “I can’t wait to see where this campus is going in a few years.”
In regards to the overwhelming transition from being an undergrad to becoming a full- time staff member, Sheffield said he really did not have trouble adjusting to the new position and the challenges that came with it.
“I love hanging around students and working with them,” he said. “I’m young, so I can relate with them more, which has made my experience easier.”
Sheffield advises all students to make themselves different and strive to set themselves apart from the rest of the pack. He said in regards to becoming successful, it is important to get quality work experience while you are still in school.
“What I mean by quality experience is not just being a server or having a job, but meaning if you want to be in the sports field, go out and get sports-related content or experience,” he said. “If you’re in the medical field, go out and get volunteer experience at doctor’s office or hospital. Just make sure that the experience that you set is relatable to your field.”