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By Kate Gilliam

“If you believe in yourself, anything is possible,” -unknown.
 On December 25, 2014 I received a Sports Illustrated magazine. You’re probably thinking, “Who cares about a magazine?” This wasn’t just a magazine. It was the start of my career as a Sports Illustrated kid reporter.
            So as I was saying, I got a magazine. Inside this magazine was an ad, which said that Sports Illustrated was looking for kid reporters for 2015. I thought to myself and I realized that this was a great opportunity for me. After that, I filled out an application and hoped for the best.  I honestly wasn’t expecting to get the chance to be a reporter for Sports Illustrated Kids, but I decided to give it a shot anyway.
            It was February 2nd. I knew today was the day; it was either I got it or not. I rushed out of school to ask my dad if he had gotten the email. The email that said I was a Sports Illustrated kids reporter. The answer was no. Yes, I was really upset, but at the same time, I wasn’t expecting anything. I still thought about it for the next two days until something crazy happened.
            On February 4th, I walked out of school. It was just a plain, normal day. My dad came over to me and said, “You got it! You got the job as a kid reporter!” I was so confused and overwhelmed; I thought that the email was supposed to come February 2nd. Well, it turned out that my dad happened to check his spam because he noticed an email in there and what do you know, it was from Sports Illustrated. (Life lesson: always check your spam- you never know what you might find).
            I got in contact with my editors and they were so welcoming and kind. They asked me what I wanted to write about, and I decided to explore what college coaches look for when recruiting. I started off my career with small local interviews. For this article, I interviewed some coaches from Hofstra University.

Then it became a little bigger. I interviewed Marty Appel, the author of Pinstripe Pride and a prior PR director for the NY Yankees. I continued to interview more and more people such as Tina Charles (WNBA Player), Abby Wambach (US Soccer Star), Ryan McDonagh (Captain of the New York Rangers), Nastia Liuken (Olympic gold medalist in gymnastics), Laila Ali (retired undefeated boxer and Muhammad Ali’s daughter). These were some really cool experiences that I know I will never forget.
            Yes, I got to interview many famous people and have a lot of cool experiences, but I also got to learn a ton. This opportunity flourished my writing skills. I learned about things that I wouldn’t learn in a classroom. I also learned a lot about public speaking, since I had to interview people a lot. Most people, I think, assumed that I just got to meet these amazing athletes, but there was also so much more to it. I learned things that I wouldn’t have learned without this opportunity!
            I hope that anyone reading this doesn’t think that I am trying to brag or boast about any experiences that I have had this past year. I honestly wrote this article to show people that you can do anything and that you should believe in yourself. I was just a little fifth grader giving something that I never would have imagined getting a shot. My overall message is to believe in yourself because at first, I didn’t and look what happened!


  1. Kate, thanks for sharing your experience. Writing for Sports Illustrated for Kids is an incredible opportunity and has clearly helped you develop many skills and achieve personal goals.

  2. Thank you for being an inspiration to kids and adults everywhere. A great experience for you means you took a risk and put yourself out there by trying for the job. We all take away a lesson from this story, “You have to believe in yourself”. Hope to see more of your interviews in the future.