The Charisma of AJ Calloway: TV Personality Comes to Campus as Part of Student Activities’ Lecture Week

Photo courtesy of Student Activities

AJ Calloway, an American personality who got his start on BET (Black Entertainment Television) visited Manhattan College as part of the 2015 Lecture Series.

Calloway was the first and former host of the popular music video countdown show 106 & Park.

The lecture took place at noon and saw a smaller crowd of students. Calloway, who now works for the entertainment television show, “Extra,” is known amongst celebrities for his interviewing techniques, down- to-earth personality and charisma. He has interviewed some of the most popular performers in the entertainment industry including Katy Perry, Jennifer Lopez, Madonna and Oprah.

He started as an international business major in college at Howard University but was always a natural communicator.

“I was just a people person, I was a talker,” he said when I asked him how he started in the communications industry.

Calloway, was also in his college’s entrepreneurship club, which he himself founded. He had always been a very creative person and forward thinker.

While still in high school in New Jersey he started producing and promoting parties, fashion shows, and fundraisers. This early experience ultimately led him to host the No. 1 rated video-countdown show in America, “106 & Park.”

Calloway won an Emmy award in 2014 for Outstanding Entertainment News Program. But even in the midst of his success he still believes in giving back to the community and accepts speaking engagements to talk to young adults about the importance of striving for academic excellence and pursuing entrepreneurship.

“Right out of college I started a company in Atlanta called Black Diamonds, I moved to New York, did events and right from there, I started ‘106 & Park’” he said about his post-graduation career.

Even though he is a very professional person, he frequently cracks jokes–something makes interview subjects feel comfortable and open up.

As for his favorite childhood memory, Calloway, surprised by the question answered: “When I made everyone notice Bill Murray in a army navy store. He ended up buying me a beer afterwards” then he added, “but I will never tell him that story, because we are really good friends now.”