NSC Alumnus Makes Documentary Dream a Reality


UCF Nicholson School of Communication alumnus, Presley Adamson, ’10, believes that deciding to attend UCF was his first step toward achieving his dream of becoming a documentary film maker.

Adamson graduated in 2010 with a B.A. in Radio Television, in the production track. In addition to being president of the National Broadcasting Society UCF Chapter and member of UCF’s Knightly News, Adamson found that the most valuable opportunity seized during his undergrad experience was taking part in internships.

“I interned nearly every semester as an undergrad,” stated Adamson. “As a student, you have a unique opportunity to work for any company you wish just to learn [from]. That real world experience is what’s going to set you apart from other job applicants.”

This experience accompanied by the guidance of the Nicholson School of Communication staff aided Adamson in developing a strong foundation of theories and principles used to jump-start his career. He began his career as a freelancer, shooting, producing, and editing content that appeared on major broadcast, cable, and digital outlets including BBC, ABC News, AP, Reuters, CNBC, Animal Planet, Discovery Channel, National Geographic Channel, Travel Channel, Yahoo!, Comedy Central, Fox News, WGN America and CNN. Presley later became a staff producer at the Science Channel where he associate produced prime-time programming including: How It’s Made, Impossible Engineering, and the highest rated series in network history—What on Earth?

Now, as a producer and editor for the non-profit Monterey Bay Aquarium, in Monterey, California, Adamson shoots and produces documentary films for internal and external distribution. Adamson also serves as a member on the Producers Guild of America AP Council and volunteers his time as a judge for the CINE Golden Eagle Award documentary film panel.

When asked what piece of advice he would give to current students as well as UCF Alumni, Adamson answered with this: “Try to take jobs that will inch you closer to where you would ultimately like to be with your career in five or ten years. Think of yourself and your resume as a brand. Every job you put on that resume paints a clearer and clearer picture to employers of what you’re about and what makes you tick.”

Adamson shared more on his experience at UCF, most memorable highlights in his career, and some fun facts about himself in the spotlight responses below.

Why did you choose to attend UCF?

The Orlando area is a major market for television news, and there are several production companies in the area. I felt that the city would provide ample opportunity for securing great internships.

What is your best UCF memory?

Spirit Splash!! UCF Football and of course tailgating with my fellow UCF Knights! Traveling to the Liberty Bowl in 2007 to watch the Knights go head to head with the Mississippi State Bulldogs was a blast, and just a glimpse of the great things the football program would accomplish in the following years. Even though we lost that game, it was our first ever Conference USA Championship and Kevin Smith’s breakout year. Those memories will last a lifetime.

Have you stayed involved with UCF since graduation? If so, how?

It’s a bit difficult now that I’m on the west coast, but my wife and I are die-hard Knights fans. We try to make it to a football game at least once a year!

What is your favorite thing about your job?

I get to work with amazing marine life every single day.

What is your most memorable experience on the job?

Scuba Diving on a shipwreck 140 feet below the surface, 40 miles off the coast of St. Augustine, FL. A close second is filming F-18 Fighter Jets taking off.

Adamson answered some more questions in our 30-second “get-to-know-you” portion of the interview:

If you were stranded on a desert island, besides the necessities, what three items (not people) would you want with you?

Sunscreen, snorkel kit, sunglasses.

Do you have any special/hidden talents?

It’s taken some practice, but dressing my five month old.


Comments are closed.