Skip to content

Alumni Spotlight: Caylin Carter

Alumna Caylin Carter is currently a student at Clark Atlanta University (Class of 2023) and is a graduate of Hardaway High School(Class of 2019) in Columbus, GA .  During her high school years she participated in the Warner Media Institute for Future Leaders in 2018 and several other 21CL’s programs and received the 2019 Georgia Youth Leadership Awards. At her college, Caylin is involved in many student activities, holds various leadership positions and currently serves as Clark Atlanta University’s United Negro College Fund Miss Empowerment 2022-2023. She gives back and recently served as a roundtable speaker on our 2021 Leadership exCHANGE fall summit.

Paint a brief picture of what you are doing now.

I just finished my internship for CNN Commentator Angela Rye this past semester while attending Clark Atlanta University where I’m a majoring in Mass Media Arts with a concentration in Radio, TV, and Film and a minor in History. I am also the host of “The Scoop”, a show I started at Clark Atlanta University, and I occasionally guest host “Blackout”, another show at CAU. I am Vice President of Broadcast for CAU’s National Association of Black Journalist and President of Drop Frame Production and I currently serve as Clark Atlanta University’s United Negro College Fund Miss Empowerment 2022-2023.

How did participating in 21CL transform you and lead you to where you are now?

Participating in the 21st Century Leaders program transformed me; it introduced me to people who would forever be in my corner. I met mentors at WarnerMedia that I still have today who have helped me with my resume or preparing for opportunities, which is something that I would be forever grateful for. I also met amazing friends at 21CL that I still talk to today. Being surrounded by like-minded individuals who have goals really transformed me as a person, because when I see other people working hard every single day it makes me want to work harder too.

Which programs did you participate in? How did the skills/tools/perspectives you acquired from 21CL prepare you for your next steps, going into college, taking on new leadership roles in your community, college and after?

I participated in several 21CL programs including the 2018 Turner Youth Voices Media Institute now known as Warner Media for Future Leaders, a lot of the school year training events, including the Goizueta Youth Leadership Summit and I was one of the awardees of the 2019 Georgia Youth Leadership Award . During my time during the summer leadership institute, I learned a lot of skills that I still use today, one of them is to always be ready, so you don’t have to get ready. I am constantly working on my elevator pitch and my resume to be prepared whenever an opportunity comes my way. I also understand the importance of professional and dining etiquette and manners, and it wasn’t until I got to college that I realized that those are skills that not everybody has. I am extremely grateful to 21st Century Leaders for instilling that in me.

Do you have a memorable or ‘aha’ moment during your time at 21CL? (Particular program, meeting a professional and diverse peer, speaking in public for the first time, etc.?)

A memorable moment during my time at 21st Century Leaders would be when we had our final projects during the summer leadership institute and my group came in third place. It was really a challenge completing that project because it was my first time being around people who weren’t really depending on me to take charge, and they were willing to work with me which is hard when you’re so used to being a leader. So, after all the going back and forth on the ideas that we had for the project it was amazing to see it pay off, and it really taught me that leaders have to consider everybody’s ideas no matter what.

Did 21CL assist you in developing a leadership style that makes you an effective leader? if so how? And have you recently learned something else about leadership? Please share!

As I continue to build my leadership career, I keep learning that even when it might be easier and probably faster to get some things done by yourself, it doesn’t help the people you’re leading when you take control of everything. A good leader must delegate assignments and give others a chance, if one person disappoints it doesn’t mean others will do the same. I also learned that communication is key and when people aren’t communicating with you, you must take the lead and ensure that you reach out to them.