“Oh my gosh, what day is it?” It’s Thursday, August 3 as Scott Carpenter, ’17, found out. “It’s only been two days. I’ve done so much,” he laughed. Life comes at you fast when you’re pursuing your dream.
Two days prior, Carpenter accepted the position of TV sports anchor at WLTZ in Columbus, Georgia. Scott will be seen Monday through Saturday nights on the NBC affiliate at 6, 10 and 11 p.m. doing what he loves most: talking sports.
Columbus sits on the western border of Georgia just next to Alabama. With a population just under 200,000, Scott gets his start in a large media market. "That market is usually, for most, a third job," Nathan Cutietta, director of the Media Communications Center, said. “For him to be able to start there is huge.”
Scott never relented pursuing his dream job after graduation. “I kept my options open,” he said. “It took a little bit of a learning curve to be able to be told, ‘no.’” While the job search came with its share of rejection, Scott knew there’s nothing else he would rather do. “If there was a 9-5 p.m. job I wanted instead, I’d already be doing it.”
Scott credits those closest to him in the Heidelberg community who took chances on him and helped push him to find the right place to start. “Robyn (White) and Nathan (Cutietta) at the MCC, Tony (Paradiso) and WTTF, they were such great teams to be a part of. I came from a great team at Heidelberg and I’m going to a great team at WLTZ.”
August 14 is Scott’s first official day at WLTZ. While the next two weeks of preparing to start may be a whirlwind, he’s determined not to get lost in the moment. “There will be times where I’ll be on the sideline at Georgia and Georgia Tech games, I’m sure, and I’ll have to put the camera down and take a step back,” he said. “I get to live out my dream of being a sports anchor.”
Countdown to Commencement: Scott Carpenter
Scott Carpenter walked into the Media Communications Center as a freshman and asked Robyn White, media producer and coordinator, a simple question. “What do I have to do to get my picture on these walls?” Scott admired the radio and TV Hall of Fame throughout the MCC.
Wanting to be a sportscaster is nothing new for Scott. It’s been on his mind since he was just 7 years old when his father bought him a microphone set and a scorebook.
“I started ‘announcing’ my own (Cincinnati) Reds games, I guess you could say,” Scott laughed. “It’s something that I’ve always known I wanted to do. My dream job is calling college football. Reacting in the moment and being concise in your words is something that kind of comes naturally.”
Over Scott’s four years at Heidelberg, his resume has become an impressive one. He’s called Heidelberg football games for WTTF, interviewed Olympic gold medalist Gabby Douglas and award-winning sportswriter Jackie MacMullan, filmed and interviewed executives behind the scenes at Cedar Point, and job shadowed SportsCenter host John Buccigross, ‘88, at ESPN.
Scott traveled to ESPN in Bristol, Connecticut, along with his fellow anchors of Live at 5, in April. Robyn accompanied the group to Bristol.
“I saw a huge mentality change in him after the trip. I constantly tell him that his looks and charm will only get him so far,” Robyn laughed. “After speaking with actual sportscasters and hearing their journeys, I think the passion and drive really kicked in for him.”
The advice and learning experiences haven’t gone unappreciated. “The MCC, Robyn (White) and Nathan (Cutietta) have done so much for me. It’s been so great. I wouldn’t get some of these opportunities anywhere but here.”
Through all the trips and interviews, one opportunity still sticks out for Scott: The Siggys.
The Siggy Awards are annually presented by the SAAC, MCC and the Office of Athletic Marketing. The ceremony is the premier event of Division III Week. Scott has hosted during all three years.
“We built that from the ground up. They said they wanted it run like the ESPYs and I said, ‘I’m your guy!’”
Jeff Garvin, director of athletic marketing and information, appreciates what Scott has done for the ceremony. “It combines his natural abilities with his passion. He really puts his heart and soul into hosting and it shows.”
“I love it,” Scott said. “It’s an opportunity for the student-athletes to dress to the nines and celebrate their accomplishments. It’s something I hope that continues for a really long time.”
Aspirations remain high in his job search, with his resume and demo reel reaching as far south as Gainesville, Florida, and as far west as Medford, Oregon. Scott feels his time at Heidelberg has set him up for long-term success in the industry.
You aren’t going to get the experiences I’ve had here at a bigger school. Because of that I’m going to have a leg up on everyone else.
The path to becoming a sportscaster may not be the easiest one but Scott Carpenter is certainly up for the challenge.
“Who knows,” Robyn said. “Maybe his picture really will end up on the wall someday!”