In a few days communication student William Canzoneri will take his last class at UW-Green Bay and his transformation from undecided major to confident and experienced graduate will be complete. Watch out world.
His happy ending is not something Canzoneri would have pictured while in high school.
“I wasn’t the most diligent student in high school, despite making varsity on both football and wrestling. I think I finished somewhere under a 3.0.”
His college career began inauspiciously. He dropped out of technical college, re-enrolled and then prepared to transfer. Two factors influenced his transfer location: a $25 career assessment test and a visit to a friend at UW-Green Bay.
“The career assessment gave me three top choices: writer, public relations, and FBI agent,” he said, “Not wanting to be a starving artist despite how much I enjoyed writing, and the fact that being an FBI agent sounded intimidating, I chose public relations.”
As for what school to attend, the visit to a friend solidified Canzoneri’s decision to attend UW-Green Bay.
“I fell in love with it,” he said, “The beautiful trails, the nature, the openness. So different from the city.”
After transferring to UW-Green Bay, Canzoneri jumped at the chance to gain even more experience by joining the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). After serving on the fundraising committee, Canzoneri was elected as Treasurer of the organization for the 2014-2015 academic year.
“The PRSSA has allowed me the chance to work on real PR plans, network with incredible professionals and fellow students around the country, and make great friends.”
Among other opportunities, Canzoneri was invited to join Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective honor society for all academic disciplines; he completed an editorial assistant internship; and he and his UWGB classmates were part of the team that won the Edelman Case Study Competition in Chicago, in Spring 2015, competing against college teams from across the nation. Most recently, he was chosen as a finalist for “Talking the Talk,” a competition hosted by Time Warner Sports. See his audition here.
“All of these successes have both challenged me, matured me, and made me more confident,” he said.
When looking to the future, Canzoneri is focused on constant improvement.
“I always tell myself: You need to do better Bill,” he said, “That shapes my thought process. I want to do more, work harder, make better habits.”
This change, from struggling student to stand out success, is something that Canzoneri is thankful his UWGB education provided him.
“From sundown at Lambeau Cottage to getting happily lost somewhere in the Cofrin Arboretum, I salute you UW-Green Bay,” he said, “You’re outstanding, incredible, fantastic. Thanks for everything.”
Story by 2015 UWGB graduate Katelyn Staaben