Superstar Journalist and Role Model

Melissa Grelo at
                           Image courtesy of CTV.

by Kim Cooper

Melissa is unstoppable and sizzling as co-host of CP24 Breakfast.  Melissa garnered exposure to a national audience as co-host for CTV’s Olympic Morning program.  Melissa not only shines on camera, but in person, she’s incredibly kind-hearted and genuine that it’s no wonder fans want more of Melissa on-air.

Melissa took time out of her busy early morning schedule to chat about her amazing journey thus far.  

VG: Tell us about your path until this point?
MG:  It’s been a looooooong windy road!  Up until my two undergraduate degrees, I thought my whole life was geared towards becoming a teacher. I did pursue that path right after I graduated highschool, then went to university, got my teaching degree and immediately got a job – which was very lucky – and taught grade 7 and 8 and I thought: that’s it?.  But it wasn’t it.  I was always interested in doing my master’s degree so I planned on teaching for a few years and then go for my master’s.  So I started the program and then that’s where this train, that had been chugging full-speed ahead, hit a wall, mostly due to burn-out. I guess I had a bit of a quarter century crisis.  So I sought the advice of a business coach and chose to take the next 3 to 4 months for myself to rest, reassess and soul search.  I asked myself: where am I really heading?  Is this it?  Because if it is, I don’t feel fulfilled.  With the help of my business coach, we hashed things out.  I had always been a news junkie and through asking myself questions, it really came to be that journalism was something that interested me.  

Melissa Grelo Superstar Journalist
Image courtesy of CTV.

VG:  So until the business coach and four months of soul searching, you didn’t realize that journalism was your passion?

MG:  Not at all!  I wrote heavily for highschool newspapers and I was always a writer and loved English.  But those clues didn’t really stand out to me when I was younger.  It wasn’t until later in life (in my 20’s) that I decided to take another path.  Then once I articulated it, it instantly took on a life of its own and it didn’t stop.  And now I realize that’s what happens when you find your passion.  My father says:  when you’re on the right path, all of the angels and saints will help you.  I feel like that’s what happened ever since the days when I said the words: I’m going to pursue journalism.

Melissa’s involvement in the community goes far beyond her career, she also speaks at fundraising events for youth to encourage them to get involved in charitable work and make contributions to their communities.  Melissa offered her insight on the pressures on youth.  

VG:  What are your thoughts on the pressures, like body image issues, on youth today?  
MG: I am very passionate about gender issues.  When I was a teacher, I noticed a phenomenon where the younger kids were bold and outspoken but by age 11 and 12, there was a shift in the girls where they started to silence themselves.  They watched more, and spoke less.  They were feisty in grade 4 and 5 but became very different girls by age 12 and 13.  There’s no woman that doesn’t have some sort of issues since society is inundated with messages and pressures.  The reality is that when I speak to girls, I’m never going to preach and say ignore what people say.  There’s a gap there, how do you make the leap from saying it to living it?  There needs to be a strong community network.  As smart as girls are, it’s not until they are a bit older that they realize they have a voice.  In the formative years, there needs to be a collaborative effort between teachers, role models, and peers to openly discuss how they’re feeling.  There’s still the message in society that girls are there to be looked at, not there to speak, and that boys make the rules.  When I was a teacher, media study was imperative.  The girls need to be asked what messages and pressures they are feeling from society and then have a discussion,  and provide them with the role models they need to figure things out.  

Find out about Melissa’s fashion style and my favourite Melissa quotes from the interview!

Can’t get enough of Melissa?  Click here to follow her on Twitter!