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10 Questions: Kelcee Clark, '13

It’s a bit dreary here today… chilly, overcast, windy, no blue in the sky whatsoever. In short, a typical summer day in San Francisco. To brighten our day, here is another set of responses to our “10 Questions” from recent alum (and gainfully-employed-right-after-graduating-alum) Kelcee Clark!

2013 COMS graduate Kelcee

2013 COMS graduate Kelcee

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

It is so hard to choose just one memory out of all four years at USF, but I would probably say learning about the city and exploring it for the first time with new friends Freshman year. It is so funny to look back to those times when everything was new and unknown. Those were some of the best memories for me.

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

Second semester Senior year, I submitted a paper from my Family Comm class to CARD (Creative Activity and Research Day) at USF and exhibited a poster of my study and findings. I had wanted to present at a conference but my paper wasn’t accepted, so I kind of did this as a second choice. But my project won best undergrad poster out of all projects exhibited that day! I was shocked! I would definitely say that it something I am very proud of. Also being awarded Cum Laude (on my degree but not at graduation… Darn that rule of it being your GPA prior to the addition of your last semester grades!)

#3: What will you miss most about college?

I will so miss having breaks. I don’t think I valued that while in school as much as I should have. Once you graduate and start working, those breaks are no more so soak it up as much as possible! Also I will miss the interesting classes I was able to take (not so much the homework associated with the classes…) as a part of the COMS major.

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

I guess I semi answered this just above but definitely the awesome classes and professors! I really did enjoy all of my COMS classes, and it was so great to figure out the style of COMS that interested me and be able to focus on that path. Especially during Junior and Senior year when you have completed all your cores, you can just focus on the classes that interest you and teach you what you need to know for your career.

#5: What, if anything, would you have done differently if you were starting your college career over again?

That’s a tough question, because anything I did in college that maybe was not the best choice or decision ended up teaching me something or bettering me in someway. But looking back on it, I would try to see even more of the city. Since I was depending on MUNI primarily, I think I kind of stayed more local to where I was living because it was easier than taking a long MUNI ride but there is so much to explore in SF and so many amazing neighborhoods to see, it is worth the trip.

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Start your internships and volunteer work EARLY. I worked at a restaurant for a year during college and although I made good money working there, it is not something I even put on my resume and it is a substantial amount of time I could have/should had been using to position myself better for career opportunities. I didn’t start making those moves until Senior year which is about two years too late. Fortunately it worked okay for me (I got a full time job 3 days after graduation!) but I was definitely nervous as I started the job search because I didn’t think my resume looked extensive enough.

#7: What are you most excited for as you start this next phase of your life after graduation?

I already love my job as an office assistant at private K-8th grade school in Portland, and am really excited to grow in this new environment. I am so happy with where post-grad life has taken me so far and am ready to settle into this new life!

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to be happily working at the same job I am at now, living in an apartment in Portland and feel established in my career. Crazy that in only five years I will be almost 28…!!!

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

I definitely have more direction than when I first started at USF. I was not sure what I wanted to do, or why I chose COMS as my major. I am very glad I unknowingly chose the degree that I feel truly prepared me for my future.

#10: What three words describe your current feelings about graduation?

Relief, Gratification, Anxiety

 

Thanks, Kelcee, for sharing your thoughts about graduation and your advice! We are so proud of you!
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10 Questions: Nikka Suleymanova, '13

Our “10 Questions” to recent graduates continue! Next up to answer my call is new alum Nikka Suleymanova, BA!

2013 COMS graduate Nikka! Isn't she smart?

2013 COMS graduate Nikka! Isn’t she smart?

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

I would have to say that laying on the grass outside Gleeson with a few friends, soaking up the sun (since sunny days are definitely rare in SF) definitely takes the win. Although, my first few days at USF were pretty memorable too. I got extremely lost trying to find my classes, and didn’t know a single person on campus. I really had to put myself out there to meet new people and had the chance to explore the beautiful campus, even if it was by mistake. Definitely scary, but looking back now, so worth it!

 

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

It may be a little cliché to say graduation, but it truly felt great to walk across that stage, knowing that all my long nights and hard work were worth it. The day I had been looking forward to for years had finally come, and I was there celebrating with my family, friends, and my graduating peers, which made it that much more special.

 

#3: What will you miss most about college?

I’ve loved going to school ever since I was a little girl, so I will definitely miss the atmosphere. College is a time to learn, find yourself, make mistakes, grow, and flourish into someone that can take on the challenges of the “real world.” So it’s definitely bittersweet that it has all come to an end. I’ll miss the wonderful professors, who really did put their heart into the students’ learning, as well as being able to sit next to my close friends in class.

 

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

My favorite (and probably the most important) thing about being a COMS major would have to be the fact that I can apply everything I have learned directly into my career. It is so extremely versatile and I love that about being a COMS major. You learn things that are so important, yet often overlooked, and are given the opportunity to apply those learned skills in a variety of different career paths.

 

#5: What, if anything, would you have done differently if you were starting your college career over again?

I would get more internships! I spent the majority of my time working at one company, and though I enjoyed it tremendously, it would have been interesting to work a few totally different internships just to see what other things I might enjoy!

 

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Network, start internships early, never burn any bridges, and don’t forget to have a good time! It’s important to meet new people and make a good (and professional) first impression, because you never know who you might meet. Remember that you go to school in SF, and meeting new people isn’t all that difficult out here, so go out and explore! Start making a LinkedIn account, and make sure your Twitter, FaceBook, etc… are always appropriate (an interviewer once told me that they purposely search for candidate’s social media accounts just to see what they post!)

 

#7: What are you most excited for as you begin this next phase of life after graduation?

I am very excited to finally start applying everything I have learned into my career. Getting a job is one thing, but starting a career that you spent four (or more) years in college preparing for is very rewarding. I’m also excited to meet new people, and continue to grow and learn new things!

 

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

I hope to start my own business (a recruiting firm for tech companies) and have my MBA by that time as well!

 

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

When I first started USF, I was still unsure of what I wanted to study, and thinking about the future scared me to pieces. Now, I am excited about what’s to come, and through my experiences at USF, I feel ready to tackle on anything that is thrown my way.

 

#10: What three words describe your current feelings about graduation?

Exhilaration, joy, and anxiousness.

 

Congratulations, Nikka, on your graduation! We are so proud of you! And is it just me, or have you also noticed that our alums are our best advertisement? Love what both Nikka and Azul have said about the Communication Studies major!

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10 Questions: Azul Corajoria, '13

As I was walking to my office this morning, the bells of St. Ignatius were chiming. Sure, they could have been announcing that it was striking 9:00, but I think they were really chiming in anticipation of today’s blog post! At long last, “10 Questions” are back!

I have asked a few of our newly minted Communication Studies alumni to answer 10 questions about their time here at USF and in the COMS department. The first to accept my proposal? Azul Corajoria, who, in addition to just graduating this past May, also just landed her first post-collegiate job! That’s right…. she was employed less than three weeks after she graduated! Congratulations, Azul! Here are her answers to our 10 Questions:

2013 Communication Studies graduate Azul

2013 Communication Studies graduate Azul

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

I have a lot of wonderful memories, but to answer the question, my most favorite memory from USF I would have to say occurred second semester Junior year. I met some fantastic people that have forever changed my life, one of them being my best friend Alica (who I just so happened to meet in a COMS class) 🙂 For me, whether it’s traveling or just hanging out, it has never been about the location itself, but the people who surround me while I’m there that I enjoy. This time I was lucky to have both. Beautiful campus in the most amazing city, and the BEST company that hold my most endearing memories. SHOUT OUT TO MY LOVES (you know who you are) <3

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

Looking back, I am most proud of the way I was able to manage my personal life and academic life so well… if I may so say myself. Graduating with honors, an amazing resume, and many many amazing memories to look back on, I would say is definitely something to be proud about 🙂

#3: What will you miss most about college?

What I will miss most about college is the ability to spontaneously do fun activities with my friends on any given day and the breaks…oh the breaks. Summer break. Winter break. Those random days off that were always welcomed. No longer will I be able to travel for weeks or months at a time…for now.

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

EVERYTHING 😉 Seriously though. Besides our amazing faculty and fellow classmates, Communication Studies classes have challenged me in ways other classes (not pointing fingers!) have not. Almost every single one of my courses helped me grow academically AND personally, not many other classes have the ability or curriculum to both those things.

#5: What, if anything, would you have done differently if you were starting your college career over again?

I transferred from a community college, which had very many benefits and I DO NOT regret choosing that path, however I did lose the whole “dorm experience.” I also wish I would have gone and explored the city more. It is all too easy to sometimes convince yourself on a Tuesday (for example) to stay in and study some more. While keeping your priorities straight obviously, try to remember that you are still in college, COLLEGE, and these are the time you will look back at for the rest of your life. So go grab a beer, eat a taco, and have fun!!

 

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Ah. ENJOY. Seriously. It goes by way too quick. Good grades are satisfying, really satisfying, but don’t forget you only have (well…usually) four years of your life in college. Make some bad decisions (I’m not condoning anything!). Learn what you can from your classes, jobs, internship, volunteer work, friends, personal experiences, etc… TRAVEL during the breaks! You have WEEKS of nothingness, take advantage while you can. Use the career center before you graduate! My resume looks absolutely AMAZING thanks to them. FINALLY (because I don’t want to type a novel) nothing is the end of the world. I’ve seen and gone through horrible break-ups, I promise, PROMISE you’ll get through it. Family problems, they will work themselves out. Friendships, come and go like the seasons, the important ones will shine 🙂 Bad grade, do better next time and it will all pan out! You get what I mean 🙂 Good luck.

 

#7: What are you most excited for as you begin this next phase of life after graduation?

I’m excited to get my career going and add new experiences and people into my life! I’ve always enjoyed  going to new places and putting myself in situations where I get to meet new people so I’m excited to do that yet again. USF was that for me, a new adventure, and now my post grad life is.

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Haha…I got asked this question in my first interview and it was the ONLY question I didn’t prepare for. Honestly, I still can’t tell you. I try not to stress about it. I guess if I had to answer though: I hope to get my student loans paid off as soon as I can and then, in between jobs, travel. I still need to do more traveling. I also want, and WILL get, my own little apartment to live in with my puppy, Kolbie 🙂

 

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

How am I NOT different would be an easier question to answer (or would it…hmm. Anyways!) I have matured on many different levels, and grown to be the woman I am proud to be today. I think a lot more rhetorically. I am more conscious of my actions and their consequences.

#10: What three words describe your current feelings about graduation?

1. Bittersweet

2. [I’m] old.

3. So…

A big thank you, Azul, for answering our questions! You shared some great advice and we are so proud to call you a Communication Studies alum!

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10 Questions: Tess Parsons, '11

Next up to tackle our “10 Questions” is recent graduate Tess Parsons!

USF graduate Tess!

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

Tess: “My favorite memories from USF come from living in the dorms and meeting all new friends.  A couple months into my freshman year I had met a great group of girls that are still my friends and    roommates today.  We decided to bike across the golden gate bridge all the way from Fisherman’s Wharf to Sausalito.  Such a great experience.”

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

Tess: “I think that graduating a semester early is a great accomplishment.  It took a little extra work during my semesters at USF but it bought me some extra time to evaluate what I am going to do next.”

#3: What will you miss most about college?

Tess: “Surprising as it may sound, I will really miss the classes and learning each day.  Of course I will also miss the summer and winter vacations.”

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

Tess: “I love that this major is so applicable and interesting in your everyday life.  Some way or another all of the Communication classes came up in my ‘real life,’ not just in the classroom.  Plus the major is so versatile and you can really make it what you choose in the job market.”

#5: What, if anything, would you have done differently if you were starting your college career over again?

Tess: “I would have started figuring out what careers interested me early on in my college career. Somehow when you’re younger you think you have so much time to figure it out, but four years goes by in the blink of an eye.  I would have taken more advantage of the on campus resources as well, the Career Service Center, advising meetings, travel opportunities, internships, the gym…(but honestly I only went like four times and now I have to buy a gym membership if I ever want to go again).”

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Tess: “First and foremost, have lots of adventures, get out of the dorms and into the city.  You’re so lucky to be at a school in San Francisco, it has so much to offer.  Second, and just as important, try to really be purposeful about where your life is going. You don’t have to figure it all out just yet, but be thinking about how each step is leading you to where you eventually want to end up.”

#7: What are you most excited for as you begin this next phase of life after graduation?

Tess: “I’m most excited to see where my life, career, and new experiences take me.  This is so exciting, but also a little scary, not knowing exactly what is going to happen.  I’m up to the challenge and adventure of what’s to come.”

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Tess: “I hope to be working in a career that really makes me happy. I hope that I am still close with all of the great friends I have made over the years at USF.  And lastly, I hope that I’m a little less stressed out about the future.”

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

Tess: “I think the major difference is that I feel more like an adult.  I have to start making more grown up decisions, and I actually wish I could go to class and do homework instead.”

#10: What three words describe your current feelings about graduation?

Tess: “Relieved, Excited, Anxious.”

Thanks, Tess! We are so proud of you!

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10 Questions: Cayden Berkmoyer, '11

Next to answer our exit interview style “10 Questions” is recent graduate Cayden Berkmoyer. Cayden wrote a preface to his answers (a true COMS major… he has a lot to say!).

“Preface: It is difficult to succinctly summarize such a significant segment of one’s life to key words and phrases without writing several blue books’ worth of text. Upon initially perusing these questions, I immediately thought to myself, ‘Well, I guess I’m writing one last ten-page essay!”’ I do not take these questions lightly, as I think there is the potential application of my responses to others’ lives as advice and guidance. However, for the sake of the readers’ eyes and saving space on the Internet for more cats, I will attempt to keep my responses as concise as conceivably possible.

Cayden, relaxing because he recently graduated

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

Cayden: “Part of me wants to say that graduation was my favorite memory from USF, but honestly I do not remember all that much of the ceremony itself. At that point I was in such a fugue that I was only physically present while my mind was off pondering the infinite possibilities of post-grad life.

It is difficult to choose just one memory over the past three-and-a-half years at USF, and as someone who has a difficult enough time deciding what to make for dinner, this is particularly trying.

One of my favorite memories is having deep existential, philosophical conversations with fellow Communication Studies major, Kylie Li, where we would often end up reveling in how applicable our studies were to real life. Discussions of the day’s issues would turn to principles we had just learned about in class that very day which connected to a class we had taken last year, which would incorporate everything from rhetorical strategies and psychological principles to qualities of communicative interactions and greater unsolved existential questions.”

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

Cayden: “I feel it is difficult to answer this question without sounding at least a little pretentious, but I will do my best. I have been looking forward to graduating from university legitimately since I was five years old, after my mother had to bribe me into taking a kindergarten entrance exam with an action figure of Dennis Nedry (the obese computer programmer from Jurassic Park). I initially did not plan on going to college, but knew deep down (i.e. by my parent’s imploring) that it would ultimately benefit me in the long run. Sixteen years post-Dennis Nedry, here I am: on the other side.

So what am I most proud of? Making it through college. To all those still in college—those just starting, those in the midst of their academic careers, and those about to finish—do not doubt for a moment that you are working towards something amazing. If you make it through college, congrats, you’re pretty awesome.”

#3: What will you miss most about college?

Cayden: “As nerdy as it may sound (and I know this is going to sound quite nerdy), I am going to miss learning. Though the setup of the various academic institutions that I have been involved with may not have agreed with me one hundred percent of the time, I do love learning something new. I hope to never lose that yearning to continually develop my mind through consistently challenging myself in what I learn. It may not seem like it at times in college, but every course you take does add something to your person. What you take away from college is up to you.

I’ve never been one much for school (see the aforementioned incident of having to be bribed into kindergarten, among a plethora of other examples that I do not have time to get into), but college, particularly the Communication Studies department, peaked my thirst for furthering my knowledge. You may not immediately find your passion in one field in college, but keep at it, there is something out there for you, whether in academia or in a small surf shop on the Pacific coast. My advice to current students is to never give up on learning. Yes, I sound like every instructor you have ever been taught by, but there’s a reason for that. Learning—inside and outside the classroom—not only serves to make you a more eloquent and erudite person, but also makes you a more well-rounded person. Go outside of your immediate interests and comfort zones, you will see that whatever you pursue has more in common with your primary interests than you might think.”

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

Cayden: “I initially picked the Communication Studies major because I did not know what else to choose. My major selection shifted from undecided to Psychology (too specific) to Sociology (too broad) to undecided again, then finally to Communication Studies (just right). I was excited and surprised to find that Communication Studies was a magical amalgamation of rhetoric, history, psychology, sociology, anthropology, language, symbology, and so much more. As I delved deeper into the major, I realized just how awesome (for lack of a better word) my choice was. Communication Studies prepares you for any situation you might face in life, save having to perform open-hear surgery on a moose on a train careening off a cliff while trying to close a business deal with your partner in Islamabad. Even then, I am confident your mind would turn to some principle you had picked up in one of your COMS courses.

Non-sequiturs aside, the professors within the department have proved time and time again that they truly care about their students’ edification and development as individuals. Never have I encountered such an interesting and involved group of souls dedicated to their work. Not just professors, if I may employ such a blunt use of ‘just,’ the instructors of the Communication Studies department are scholars in their respective fields of study and bring their passions and expertise to the table, making each course a unique and gratifying experience. And I am saying this as a graduate, so you know I’m not just kissing ass to get a better grade (although Professor Doohan still has not entered her grades yet…).” [Oh yes I have!] “In all seriousness, I could not imagine having picked a better major with a more broad and applicable realm of study and more enthusiastic and engaging professors.

People have frequently asked me, ‘So… what exactly is Communication Studies?,’ and I often had difficulty deciding where to begin, even after my first few semesters. After several minutes of me attempting to explain the interconnectedness of rhetoric, sociology, language, symbols, etc… and how COMS links them together, I would be met with blank expressions of befuddlement. Like any major, you get out of COMS what you put into it. The same goes for Business, Psychology, Chemistry, and the rest. You can skate by and get passing grades and get your degree, but if you truly embrace this amazing area of study and take what you are learning to heart, you will have a completely different experience that if you take the former route. It is an amazing course of study if you take the time to acknowledge and appreciate it.”

#5: What, if anything, would you do differently if you were starting your college career over again?

Cayden: “Departing from my previous direction of nerdiness and consumption in school, I will admit that if I could do one thing differently I would not have focused so much on academics. USF (as the name suggests) is in San Francisco, arguably one of the greatest cities on earth. One of the most diverse and busy centers of culture, commerce, and entertainment, I urge my fellow Dons to find that just-right balance of work and play. Take advantage of the fact that you are in college, and I mean that in two main ways.

First, make the most of the time you have in this city as a college student to enjoy all of the amazing facets of San Francisco. After all, you are only eighteen, nineteen, twenty, etc… once, so make the most of it! As someone who spent his first year of college in a town of ten-thousand at a school of under two-thousand, twenty minutes away from any semblance of a metropolitan area, if it ever seems like there is nothing to do—trust me—there is something. There is ne’er a dull moment in the city if you know where to look, so do it up right.

That being said, I turn towards the second signification of my prior statement. You are only in college for a brief period (believe me, it flies by as much as it crawls), so in theme with the responses to the preceding questions, revel in the fact that these are the years that you can study whatever your like. Random class that you think you might be interested in? Take it. Doesn’t add anything to your major or CORE classes? TAKE IT. You can be exposed to as much learning as you choose, so make the most of this time that you can guide the course of your education and development of your person.”

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Cayden: “If it hasn’t been made apparent already, much of this is already directed at current students as a guide of sorts (if you choose to follow this advice). However, if I had to offer one piece of advice (and once again I lament sounding like every other person offering advice who has come before me), do not listen to what anyone else has to say. You may heed what your peers or elders have to tell you, but it does not mean a thing if you can’t embody what they say yourself. Yes, it’s probably good advice, but you need to figure it out yourself. Often the best advice comes from one’s own experience. An example I am oft to cite is telling a small child not to touch something because it is hot. Let’s say a stove for example. Now certainly the kid knows what hot means and knows what “Do not touch” means. In order to truly understand the situation, however, (as is often the case) the child reaches out and touches the hot stove anyways.

By no means am I comparing new students to children; I’m not that pompous. What I mean by this metaphor is that you need to figure it out yourself. You can listen to countless people offering you an infinitely broad spectrum of advice that follows directly from their own experience. This advice will apply more or less to your life accordingly to your own experience thus far, but ultimately you are at a time in your life when you’re figuring out yourself. So disregard everything I’ve just told you and go do you.”

#7: What are you most excited about as you begin this next phase of life after graduation?

Cayden: “In a word: Life. It seems like an eternity that I have been waiting for the opportunity to blaze my own path and forge my destiny. And to answer that question that just popped into your head, yes, I do liken myself to an archetypal character. Specifically Conan the Barbarian. As I am not even a month into post-grad life, I am still reeling at my newfound freedom to do whatever I want. ‘What’s that you say?,’ you say, ‘Anything you want?’

Yes.

Equipped with the education you will hopefully receive from your time at USF as a COMS (or any other major [but particularly COMS]) student, I firmly believe that you have the ability to do whatever you want in life (within reason, sorry to those who wanted to grow up to become a time-travelling astronaut Japanese pop star like me). The capacity of what you can accomplish is only as limited as your dreams (with the exception of being a time-travelling astronaut Japanese pop star).”

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Cayden: “In five years I hope to be dangling my feet in my grape-Jello filled swimming pool sipping White Russians and enjoying life as a time-travelling astronaut Japanese pop star. In all seriousness, though, all I can hope for is to be doing well enough and have landed on my feet after the immanent global economic collapse. Personally, I’m stocking up on water, gasoline, football shoulder pads, and black spray paint in preparation of the world going Road Warrior.”

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

Cayden: “What a question. I think the form of this answer is more suited for interpretive dance, but I guess text will have to do. I came to USF a boy. I left a man. My time at USF has been a chrysalis, which on December 16th, I emerged from as a glorious graduate butterfly. Though I would like to say I completely changed, I think my core essence of my person has remained relatively the same, but I find myself more self-assured and aware. The people whom I have met here and the experiences I have had are many and have affected the course of my life and my self-development in innumerable unseen ways. I hardly remember the person I was entering this school, in a sense, but know I like the person who is leaving. I think mostly I have a better sense of self-conceptualization and self-understanding, unequivocally born from the lifelong friends I have made here. So thanks for that, USF.”

#10: What are three words that describe your current feelings about graduating?

Cayden: “Quixotic. Triumphant. AWWWWWWWWWWWWWYEEEEEEEEAAAAAABUDDY.”

Congratulations, Cayden, on your graduation! We are so proud of you and can’t wait to hear where you end up! Thanks for sharing your advice!

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10 Questions: Melissa Jenkins, '11

The new year has started, and what better way to kick it off than with a new category of blog post? I thought it might be fun to pose 10 questions to a few of our recent graduates about their experiences here at USF and what their plans are for the future. You know, so we can learn from their experiences now that they are wizened college grads! Today, Melissa Jenkins, who just graduated this past December, is answering them for us. Here we go…

Congratulations Melissa!

#1: What is your favorite memory from USF?

Melissa: “My favorite memory at USF is lying out on the grass that surrounds Lone Mountain on a hot day (rare in SF!) with Kylie and Cayden (also recent graduates) in between classes, dreaming about graduating ‘some day.'”

#2: What are you most proud of during your college career?

Melissa: “I’m probably most proud of the internship I had with NBC and where that led me.”

#3: What will you miss most about college?

Melissa: “I will miss the Professors and the college campus itself.  USF is such a gorgeous campus!”

#4: What was your favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major?

Melissa: “I would have to say that my favorite thing about being a Communication Studies major is the fact that the material I studied is actually something I can use on a daily basis whether it’s in my career, or in my everyday life.”

#5: What, if anything, would you do differently if you were starting your college career over again?

Melissa: “I would learn how to study for tests earlier on in my college career. I would figure out what my real learning style was and respect it.  I would also take advantage of my Professor’s office hours (go visit them once in a while, they won’t bite!)”

#6: What advice do you have for students in their first or second year of college?

Melissa: “Study first, play later.  No matter how fun whatever it is that’s luring you away from getting what you need to do done, it won’t be as fun if you have something due that is looming over your head!”

#7: What are you most excited for as you  begin this next phase of life after graduation?

Melissa: “I just started my own business so I’m really excited about getting that off the ground and profitable!”

#8: What do you hope to be doing five years from now?

Melissa: “Working hard in a career that I love.”

#9: How are you different now than when you first started at USF?

Melissa: “I have a much stronger sense of who I am as a person and what I want to do with my life. USF gave me the freedom to explore what really drives me.”

#10: What three words describe your current feelings about graduating?

Melissa: “Pride, Hope, Satisfaction”

Melissa at graduation

Congratulations, Melissa! Thanks for sharing your experiences with us! We are so proud of you!