Katie Weatherford

Celebrating Our Graduates: Film program graduate named Academic Recognition Day Representative

Katie Weatherford, who is graduating from the film program at Georgia Highlands College (GHC) this May, was selected as a Board of Regents Academic Recognition Day Representative for 2023. 

Created through the University System of Georgia (USG) 35 years ago, every year, each of the system’s institutions selects a student with a 4.0 GPA who also reflects the system’s best qualities: “They aim to strive for excellence and have the ability to share knowledge in various areas of expertise.” 

For recipients like Weatherford, being nominated and selected as an Academic Recognition Day Representative can often come as a shock. 

“I was really surprised. I didn’t know I was nominated, so when I saw the email saying I was chosen it was really neat!” Weatherford said. “I dropped what I was doing and sent it to my mom.” 

When Weatherford first transferred to GHC, she majored in music because she was coming from a musical theater pro- gram at another college. That was until she learned about the Film Production pathway at GHC. 

“I knew that I wanted to make children’s television, and because of that I thought it made perfect sense to be a music major,” Weatherford said. “When I learned that the film pro- gram here was a hands-on program where you actually got to make films, I quickly changed to be a film major. It was an amazing decision that has opened so many doors.” 

In August of 2022, Weatherford was voted president of the Highlands Film Society and has been working with the organization to plan events and short film productions. In addition, she serves as vice president of membership for the college’s chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, Alpha Psi Omicron, giving her the opportunity to work with college administration to develop an ambassador program, as well as non-profit organizations like Open Door Children’s Home. 

In her free time, Weatherford enjoys auditioning for short films and writing screenplays as well as having coffee with friends and streaming films and television. 

After graduation, she hopes to move to Atlanta and start working on set in either a cast or crew capacity and to continue creating with those she met at GHC. 

“I just heard Janina Gavankar say in an interview, ‘I don’t have a dream role; I have a dream career.’ That is really true,” Weatherford said. “I just want to be surrounded by creative people helping each other make what we are passionate about.” 

“I think this has been a great place for me to learn and grow into myself,” Weatherford said. “GHC gave me the space to become confident in myself and my abilities.” 

Academic Recognition Day is hosted annually by the Board of Regents in Atlanta. 

Georgia Highlands College will hold its 2023 commencement ceremonies on Thursday, May 11, at the Floyd Campus gym, 3175 Cedartown Hwy, Rome GA 30161. The 2023 commencement ceremonies will be held May 11 at 11AM and 7PM, with the Nursing pinning and commencement ceremony at 3PM. More information can be found on the commencement ceremony page regarding details, directions and campus guidelines. 

A livestream of the event will be available here.