Meet The Team

As each semester comes and goes, so does the staff of UT Today. As new seasons begin and new staff produces the shows, they will be added here.

Spring 2018






Sam Maneri

I am a senior Journalism/Electronic Media major at UT. Originally from Worcester, Massachusetts I have grown to love the unique aspects of Southern Culture. I am the main producer for UT Today and have always had a passion for storytelling. I have been working with various media outlets since my Freshman year on campus and have worked with campus and local stations as well as stations in Rhode Island and Colorado. Once a wannabe reporter I has found happiness in Producing. I am eager to graduate this upcoming May and hope to work in a medium sized market after doing so.  I have a desire to travel and see as much of the world as I can, telling stories as I go. Besides my love of all things News, my outside hobbies include dog watching, beach lounging and restaurant reviewing.









Jake Albright

I am now entering my Senior year as a Journalism and Electronic Media Major at the University of Tennessee Knoxville. Through my experiences at UTK, I have been involved in the Broadcast Journalism field gaining experience in a multitude of ways. I work as a Producer of the on-campus television news series titled TorchLight. I work as a Videographer and Writer for the universities online portion of the daily publication The Daily Beacon. I am also the President of UT’s chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists and serve as the Vice President for the Diversity Student Leaders Society. When I am not focusing on my studies or working on a Broadcast project, I enjoy spending time with family and friends (along with my dog, Zoey), exploring East Tennessee, photography, playing the saxophone and guitar, and watching TV!









Hannah Milby

I am from Goodlettsville, Tennessee. Growing up minutes away from the Tennessee Titans and Nashville Predators helped shape my love of sports. I enjoys spending her time with my cat, Talouse, and binge-watching on Netflix. Fun fact: I worked at Walt Disney World.





Savanna Jacoby

I am a senior double majoring in Journalism and Electronic Media and Political Science. I have a passion to report on politics and plan to go to law school after undergrad. I am currently heavily involved on campus as a student leader. I am one of the Executive Producers for TorchLight News, under The Volunteer Channel. I represent the College of Communication and Information as a Land Ambassador and am the Vice President of the Society for Professional Journalists. I have interned at the Knoxville affiliate for CBS Channel 8 WVLT and the NBC affiliate Channel 10 WBIR. Last summer I interned in Senator Lamar Alexander’s Press Office in Washington D.C. When I am not focused on my studies she enjoys talking politics, spending time family and friends and cleaning.









Olana Osborn

I iam originally from New York, and came to Tennessee via Florida. I found a passion for journalism after studying abroad in Australia for a semester and have been working in a local newsroom for close to a year. After graduating in May, I want to be a general assignment news reporter. I love storytelling, hiking, swimming, meeting new people, travelling, and all things Tennessee!












Allison Woodall

Since leaving my hometown of Corpus Christi, Texas, I have called the Knoxville area my home for the past four years. I have been interning with WBIR, the NBC-affiliated news station for the past year.
I spent my high school years at Incarnate Word Academy playing varsity soccer and volleyball as well as running the yearbook until I graduated in 2014. After that I moved up to Knoxville, Tennessee. At the University of Tennessee, I plan to receive my degrees in Journalism/Electronic Media and English with a concentration in Creative Writing this May, 2018. Go Vols! While balancing school, I am also a member of the Delta Gamma Sorority and a member of the college’s radio (WUTK) station. When I’m not working or studying, I love volunteering with Club VIBES and Lion’s Club Mission to help with the visually impaired.






Mariah Rock

All my life I grew up watching the news, and reporters on the TV. My first time realizing that I wanted to become a reporter was the Summer going into my freshman year of college here at UT. I was sitting in a hotel room with my parents after a long day of orientation and the news came on. Right then I watched how much one of the local reporters appeared to be enjoying her job and how she was able to interact with someone outside of the office. It’s not everyday that you can wake up and say that you are excited to go to work, and I cannot wait until I get the chance to say that! Until then, I am awaiting graduation in May, and working as an intern at WBIR-TV 10 News. I know that there are so many people in this world who have a powerful and emotional story to tell, and I want to be their voice and help them tell their story. How great is it that my job and career will be to tell empowering stories for a living? Pretty amazing.







Cayla Graner

I was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania but moved to Knoxville, Tennessee when I was six and have lived here ever since.  I started my love for journalism when I watched the Olympics in 2008, and became obsessed with them.  I wanted to be a sports reporter up until I started my second semester of Freshman year.  That’s when I joined our on campus news station, TVC, and I learned that I loved to report news more than sports.  I went to Sydney, Australia in the spring of 2017, and interned at Fairfax Media, one of the top media centers in Sydney. I have also interned at Local 8 News, and plan on becoming an MMJ after I graduate next May. Fun fact- I once got to hold a koala and feed a kangaroo.





Anslee Daniel

I am a junior at the University of Tennessee- Knoxville studying Journalism and Electronic Media. I am from the Metro-Atlanta area.
In the summer of 2017, I completed a Foreign Correspondent Course through TOL Education in Prague, Czech Republic. That summer, I was an intern for WATE (ABC Affiliate) in Knoxville, Tennessee. Throughout my collegiate career, I has had the opportunity to serve in various leadership positions. I am a member of The Society of Professional Journalists and Delta Gamma Fraternity. In spring 2018, I will be participating in another internship with WBIR (NBC Affiliate) in Knoxville, Tennessee as I complete my junior year. I plans to graduate in May of 2019.






Camille Gear

I am a senior studying sports and broadcast journalism while minoring in business administration at the University of Tennessee. I have worked at WATE, the ABC-affiliate news station as a digital news and sports intern. I loved my time at a local TV station, however my passion lies in network sports. My dream is to one day be a sports anchor for ESPN, Fox Sports, or NBC Sports covering football and hockey. My love for sports stemmed from my father taking me to UT football games, Titans games and the inaugural game for the Nashville Predators in 1998 when I was just two years old. My love for sports will have to wait one more semester, however as i am not graduating this spring like most seniors. In the fall I am studying abroad in Florence, Italy to finish my business administration minor and further my journalism degree. When I’m not watching sports I love playing with my Bichon Frisée, Snowball and shopping with friends. Follow me on Twitter @camille_gear13 and Instagram @geared__up to learn more about my life!





Tala Shatara

I am a senior majoring Journalism & Electronic Media and minoring in Arabic. I am an executive member of The Diversity Student Leader Society, and a member of The Society of Professional Journalists. I have worked with The Volunteer Channel as a Feature reporter, and had my own show called uTrending. I plan to go law school after graduating from UT. I work at the Knoxville Entrepreneur Center as a video specialist and journalist. I also have my own business through Instagram, which is where I feature all things fashion, beauty, travel, and lifestyle. I have amassed over 15,000 followers and have found this wave of technology to help me businesses wise and financially too!     Look me up! @talashatara


Ashley Sharp

I am a senior studying broadcast journalism at the University of Tennessee. I currently work as a visual storyteller at WBIR in Knoxville, where I completed an internship two years ago. I have also interned at WMC Action News 5 in Memphis, Tennessee. I am pursuing a career as an MMJ in local news markets and hopes to one day work in Memphis or Atlanta as an anchor.Last year I traveled Europe for five months where I visited 10 different countries and over 30 cities. I consider this to be one of my best college experiences because I learned how to adapt to new surroundings.I has also worked on documentary teams and served as an anchor and executive producer for TVC news. You can see more of my work on my website,



News Director

Dr. Rene Smith