By Orla Kilpatrick
Communications specialist Claire Revere joined the North Carolina Collaboratory team on March 20. With a long line of training behind her, Claire’s expertise will guide the Collaboratory to new extents of transparency and authenticity, including a greater emphasis on multimedia communications.
“I am proud to be working with an organization that supports the exploration and development of solutions for pressing issues faced by North Carolinians, including those related to environmental quality, natural resource management, public health, and more,” stated Revere.
Born and raised in Seattle, Revere grew up in the temperate climate of the Pacific Northwest. She attended Whitman College and studied for an undergraduate degree in Environmental Humanities, delving into media communications and film studies.
“I’ve known for a long time that I want to work in environmental and science communications, leveraging my multimedia skills to create positive change. I think videography and photography complement this pursuit by driving curiosity and empathy amongst viewers. I get nerdy about the visual side of communication, but I think written journalism is also important.”
Revere discovered her love of documentary filmmaking during her undergraduate studies and specifically during a two-month summer internship with Sarah Koenigsberg, the owner and director of Tensegrity Productions.
“We produced a short video to celebrate the 20th anniversary of Wallowa Resources, an organization committed to ‘creating strong economies and healthy landscapes through land stewardship, education, and job creation.’ We camped in the field throughout filming and traveled to interview various stakeholders across the county. It was extremely rewarding to meet those working in this vibrant community, learn about the area’s conservation history, and weave together a cogent narrative in celebration of these efforts.”
She took a couple years off before attending graduate school and coached high school boys ultimate frisbee and basketball in Seattle.
“I’ve played ultimate frisbee since fourth grade, and it’s still a big part of my life. I currently play for the North Carolina women’s semi-professional team called Raleigh Radiance.”
In the interim, she also worked as a communications intern at the Cape Eleuthera Institute (CEI) in the Bahamas. The educational program asks students to grapple with the question, “How you do live well in a place?” while studying sustainability, marine science, and conservation. She found herself working in photography, videography, writing blogs, and partaking in various other communications projects.
“Part of my job was documenting the coral restoration team’s efforts using micro-fragmentation techniques to restore the reef. I got to [scuba] dive and film what they were doing, which was amazing.” Additionally, she reported on many sustainable research initiatives at the school, including two that increase food security in the community: an aquaponics system that produces lettuce and tilapia and a mycoremediation program that cultivates oyster mushrooms while closing the loop on waste produced on campus.
This experience made Revere’s decision to work in the science and communications fields seem fitting. “I get to use my creative skills with videography and photography while making an impact to create positive change with sustainability efforts and conservation.”
While completing her master’s in strategic communication at the UNC-Chapel Hill Hussman School of Journalism and Media, Claire worked as a graduate fellow at UNC Blue Sky Innovations, an emerging technologies lab on Franklin Street. During her graduate school tenure, she also participated in an international projects course in the Galápagos on San Cristóbal Island that informed her thesis project.
“My master’s thesis was about leveraging environmental filmmaking to promote pro-environmental behavioral change using the theory of narrative persuasion. Because of mechanisms like narrative transportation, there is significantly less resistance to stories, which make them a powerful communication tool.”
All aspects of Revere’s experiences have provided her with skills that are applicable to her current position. She ruminated, “I gained something from working as a barista and coaching high school sports.” She believes there are transferable skills that can be taken from any position, and offered the advice, “Find ways to connect experiences to take you where you want to go, and overtime, you can progress to where you ultimately see yourself career-wise.”
“In my work, I strive to promote social change for the good of many and the protection of our planet. I value that the Collaboratory connects policymakers with rigorous scientific research so they can make informed decisions that benefit the State’s constituents.”
Orla Kilpatrick (Hometown: Melbourne, Australia) is a senior Media Communications and Cultural studies major at UNC-Chapel Hill and is working as a communications intern with the North Carolina Collaboratory for the 2023 spring semester.