By Hannah Treece
Kylie Sheaffer is a storyteller. She peppers her interview with anecdotes, and answers each question with an example from her life. She makes you laugh or cry with each of her stories, and she had a way of making you feel like you experienced each story right along with her.
A perfect example is one of the first stories Sheaffer told about her childhood. In middle school, she had to dress up as Santa for an animal shelter so people could take pictures of her with their pets. “I was a 13-year-old girl dressed up as Santa,” she said laughing. “It was terrible. I had a fat suit basically, like a pillow in the stomach.”
Continuing with these stories about growing up, Sheaffer talked about being born in Michigan, and moving to Charlotte, North Carolina when she was three. Despite the move, she has no shortage of Michigan wisdom. She described the state as being cold and gray, but added that it’s close to Canada, home to Ryan Gosling, Ryan Reynolds, and the prime minister, Justin Trudeau. All three are handsome enough to make up for the weather’s shortcomings.
Sheaffer is the oldest of three siblings, she has a brother and a sister. She laughed out loud as she talked about her brother, a 6-foot-5 man in a family of average-heighted members. “It looks like in Willy Wonka when the kid gets stretched out, like that’s my little brother.”
As a junior at the University of South Carolina, Sheaffer spent one of her semesters studying abroad in London, England, for which her passion is undeniable. “London is my favorite place in the world. Easily, in the world! Literally on my last day in the city I just sat across from Big Ben, I just sat on a bench and was crying.”
She then shared one of her favorite experiences of the trip. She and her friends went to see the new Harry Potter play, performed only in England. During the intermission, they walked outside and started joking about getting Harry Potter tattoos, and low and behold there was a tattoo shop right across the street. They took that as a sign and went for it, each getting one.
“I was in the theater and intermission came and I looked at my friend Elaine and we were just both crying because we were so happy, and we were like, ‘we both have tattoos and we’re in England for months!’”
This passion of hers isn’t just limited to Harry Potter, it spans many subjects from animals to the environment to politics to comedy. Sheaffer loves satirical news, co-founding a segment on Student Gamecock Television called Carolina Tonight, similar to Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update.
She told me about how last week, they made up a skit where they had “Ronald the White House janitor” come in, but it was actually Donald Trump with a fake mustache and a janitor suit. “It was so much fun to get the inside scoop from Donald as the janitor. It was really fun.”
In addition to this possible career path, she talked about how she’d love to get involved with marine biology, local politics, theater, and even having her own magazine. She joked that one day she would have her own empire. Sheaffer graduates in a year, but she doesn’t seem too worried about the future and which path to take. “I really would be happy doing so many different things… I’ll figure it out. I’m here now, that’s what matters.”
Treece is a broadcast journalism senior