Last chance to live the dream


Brittany Wagner has recently gained stardom from the Netflix Original Series “Last Chance U” she took time to meet with Emily Cole and Addison Coffey on Saturday, September 3, 2016 in Lexington, Ky. photo by Addison Coffey | Staff

By Emily Cole

One year ago academic adviser Brittany Wagner didn’t even have internet. Today she is a household name because of her huge role in the breakthrough Netflix documentary “Last Chance U.” The advisor for East Mississippi Community College has gained incredible notoriety since the release of the documentary due to the close relationship she forms with her players. Despite becoming an overnight celebrity, Wagner says that not much has changed.

“In my day to day life it doesn’t feel any different because my job hasn’t changed,” said Wagner. “I’m still a single mom who parents my child and goes to work but people just weren’t interested in it before. It is weird to have people knowing what you’re doing or caring. Obviously all the interviews are different but my life is the same, just a little more exciting.”

East Mississippi Community College has become a last chance destination for talented football players to turn their academic careers around in hopes of making it to a Division One university and ideally the NFL. In their time at EMC, players are monitored closely in class and are expected to make the grades it will take for them to advance in their collegiate careers. Wagner is responsible for supervising this academic performance and and she takes the job very seriously, which has not gone unnoticed since the release of “Last Chance U.”  

Her commitment to the athletes and the personal relationships she fosters with her advisees landed her major screen time in the series and recognition from critics and viewers alike. Despite this success, Wagner says that she had no idea what to expect when filming began.

“It happened so fast that it wasn’t something that we got to sit and talk and analyze about,” said Wagner. “We were featured in an article in GQ magazine in 2014 and the writer of that did so much time in my office and around the school doing research on us and so I told all my friends about it and I ran out to get the magazine and I was cut from the whole story. The Netflix show came from that but during the entire filming I’m thinking in the back of my mind that I could get cut from the whole thing.”

The response to “Last Chance U” has been bigger than anyone involved could have ever guessed, and Netflix is currently filming season two. When it comes to being in front of the cameras Wagner feels a bit different going in to this new chapter of the series. 

“It is different filming season two because I know now what I didn’t know then,” said Wagner. “Truthfully I didn’t have Netflix when this started. I actually just got internet a year ago. But so many people are watching us now and it’s crazy.” 

When confronted with questions about what the future holds, Wagner is open to anything, including change. “I love my job but I would also be open to a change. I could see myself working for athletic development within the SEC or the NFL, but who knows.”

“Last Chance U” is available for streaming on Netflix.