Not everyone is passionate about what they choose to pursue in life. Sometimes people choose their career simply because they feel like they have to or because they don’t know what other path to choose. Nitya Shah, however, has been passionate about media for a very long time and is driven to make a positive difference in the world.
“Any career path or job in media that deals with people is very important. Essentially, you're getting people in your community to share their story, to share their experiences, or you yourself are the one that is covering an issue, and I think that's very important to spread information and make sure that important information is being shared with people, so everyone around you can be educated on other people in the community, or important issues going on. I just feel like it's a good way to keep people connected, and that's always been something that's important to me,” said Shah.
Shah was born in North Carolina, but his family moved to Northwest Indiana when he was a baby and he’s grown up here his entire life. He’s spent most of his life living in Dyer, Indiana, and he graduated from Lake Central High School. He is currently a sophomore at Indiana University majoring in Media Advertising and minoring in Graphic Design.
The field of Journalism has had a place in Shah’s heart ever since his freshman year of high school when his class schedule abruptly changed and he was thrown into a journalism class he hadn’t originally planned on ever taking.
“I had a bit of a schedule change and I was enrolled in Intro to Journalism. It was just to fill like my elective credit because back then I was set on doing business in the future. Then when I took that class I just fell in love with everything, journalism, everything media,” said Shah.
After that, he got involved in many different media and communications groups and student organizations, and he knew going into college that in one way or another he wanted to work in the Journalism field, or something closely related. After switching his major a few times trying to find his forever path, he finally settled on Media Advertising, and he couldn’t be happier.
What’s especially interesting about Shah is that he is a recipient of the Lilly Endowment Scholarship, a full-ride scholarship to any four-year in-state college. Earning the scholarship has been a huge blessing to Shah and he’s incredibly grateful for what it has done for his family.
“I'm so happy that my parents gave their all for me to come here and study in high school and stuff. And then I was able to lift that burden of paying for my college off of them before I went. It just kind of felt like I was kind of like paying them back in a way for all the stuff they’ve done for me,” said Shah.
Shah’s parents are originally from India. When they moved to America they chose their careers based on what would best support their family, rather than their passions. Getting the opportunity to study what he loves has made Shah realize how much he owes his parents and how thankful he is for everything they’ve done for him to make sure he can live a happy life.
“I had one of those moments where I was just like, 'I can't believe I'm like studying this.' I feel like I kind of owe it all to my parents because they kind of didn't really get to pursue their passions and kind of just studied what would make money and give them the ability to raise a family after coming to America. I get to go to college and study what I want because of all the hard work they put in to let us do that,” said Shah.
Shah is very busy with class and student organizations that are centered around his field of study, but even when he’s not in class he likes to put his skills to the test. Often, he’ll jump on Adobe Illustrator just to fiddle around and design graphics for fun. He’s also taken up vinyl collecting with his friends and has even started getting back into reading—something he hasn’t always had a lot of time for.
Shah may only be a short way into his higher education, but he’s already on the right track to having a very successful future and making a great impact on the media industry.