Kiara Samuels

Degree: Master of Science in Mass Communication

College/School: College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts

As a soldier, Kiara Samuels embodies bravery, dedication, and patriotism. But she is also kind, hopeful, and most of all, grateful.

Kiara is no stranger to challenges - as an undergraduate student at FIU she unexpectedly lost two close family members. She survived domestic violence and went through a divorce. But she concentrated on her studies and earned her bachelor’s degree in communication arts. She then returned to FIU for a master’s in global strategic communications, excelled in her graduate coursework, and was a member of the Tau Sigma National Honor Society.

With experience in several professional fields and as a member of a military family, Kiara was inspired to enlist in the U.S. Army last year. She knew that she would be tested physically and mentally while she served her country, and she was. She endured the grueling military training, and she was twice hospitalized with non-combat related issues that came from the very real pressures and strain of active duty.

According to Kiara: “I’ve faced abuse and depression. However, though these things were meant to end me, they in fact motivated me, and for that I’m grateful.”

Building on past experiences she had as one of four students in the state selected for a WSVN internship in the summer of 2017, she looks forward to completing her military obligations and pursuing a career in news and communication that will allow her to engage others, make a difference and continue to live in a place of gratitude.