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Scholarship Profile: Oliver W. Colbert

Posted: May 15, 2013

When famed filmmaker Spike Lee spoke at Buffalo State in fall 2011, Oliver W. Colbert took one of Lee’s message to heart: “You’ll never work a day in your life if you do something you love.”

Colbert realized he could make a living doing what he loved—writing—and changed his major to journalism.

“I never looked back,” Colbert said.

A Brooklyn native, Colbert is now looking ahead to an exciting opportunity to intern at CBS Sports in New York City this summer.

“I knew that if I ever had the opportunity to write about sports, whether for TV or print, I would jump on it,” said Colbert. After a phone interview, he was hired for a position in the CBS Sports’ New Media Department, which oversees advertising.

“It’s more PR than writing, but it’s a foot in the door and a big name I can put on my resume,” Colbert said.

Nina M. Silberstein, ’85, who studied journalism at Buffalo State, is helping Colbert in his journey with a $1,000 scholarship she designated for a journalism student in need. Silberstein is a medical writer/copy editor for the corporate office of Banfield Pet Hospital in Portland, Oregon. She also wrote freelance articles for various publications for years.

“Being a writer, I know how hard it is. The competition is fierce. It’s important to have people support you along the way to help you reach your goals,” Silberstein said on her decision to make the gift to Buffalo State. “It’s one thing to get support from family and friends, but when people in the outside world support you, it makes you feel good.”

Silberstein also had a personal reason for her gift. She recently underwent radiation treatment for breast cancer and has been cancer-free for one year.

“A lot of people who didn’t know me took good care of me and basically saved my life,” she said. “Providing this scholarship is one way of giving back.”


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