50 Feet Deep in Discovery Bay

By Lauren Haller

This is the story of how the newest UPRAISE team member found her calling and made the switch from marine biology to marketing and PR.

This story begins underwater.

You’re probably wondering how we got here. As a marine science major who had recently switched into science journalism, I often wondered that myself.

Lauren Haller scubaIt all starts on a study abroad trip doing scuba diving research in Discovery Bay, Jamaica. As I progressed through the marine science program at Coastal Carolina University, I began to realize while I loved the course material, I wasn’t thrilled with the career paths I was being set up for. After considering my core interests, exploration and conservation, combined with my skills in research and writing, I decided to create my own interdisciplinary program in science journalism — just before my study abroad trip.

As it turns out, 50 feet underneath crystal clear blue water is an excellent place for self-reflection. I ultimately made the tough decision to trade marine biology labs for writing workshops. Excited, nervous, and admittedly, a little out of place among students with straight career trajectories, I managed to find confidence in myself to pursue a new direction better suited to my talents and passions.

The best path in life is often not the straightest, and the ability to adapt and switch courses is key. Following graduation with a degree in science journalism, my path took yet another turn, and I ended up working in PR and marketing. Being research-minded and having a background in journalism turned out to be huge assets within the communications field. I am happiest at the intersection of creativity and strategy, so content marketing has been a natural fit. I enjoyed the work I was doing so much that I eventually went back to school for a graduate degree in strategic communication at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. Between the heartbreak of the 2016 NCAA basketball championship and the sweet redemption that 2017 brought, it was a really great two years to be at Carolina.

This brings us to the present as I start my next journey at UPRAISE. I’m bringing experience in digital marketing, social media, and SEO in a variety of industries to the team and I’m really looking forward to continue developing these skills. Outside of the office, you can find me experimenting in the kitchen, running or hiking scenic San Francisco routes, or exploring with my other half and our dog, Charlie. Continuing the spirit of adventure, I’m currently on a personal quest to visit all 59 U.S. national parks.

I love San Francisco already and I’m looking forward to adventures in my new west coast home, and of course, with my new team members at UPRAISE. This story is actually just beginning.


Lauren Haller UNC UPRAISE PR

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