Alumni Advise Students for the Future


The Communications Studies Careers Conference, Taking Off to New Horizons: Ideas, Advice, Opportunities, was last week. Positive vibes and JMU love was spread throughout Harrison Hall as alumni advised students on life after college. There were sessions starting at 9:05am until 4:25pm on topics ranging from the different concentrations within SCOM, to résumé reviews, to mock interviews, to what to expect after graduation, and much more.

“The pot at the end of the rainbow may be filled with gold,” quotes alumnus Rob Burke (’85). With all class years in attendance at the conference, students asked questions relevant to all aspects of the communications field. However, transitioning out of college was an overarching topicof interest. Dealing with life after college may be a tough transition, but alumni were very encouraging. They advised students that some circumstances may be blessings in disguise and building relationships with colleagues is essential. Here are a few main comments from alumni:

  •  “You have all the time in the world; even if you don’t think you do, you do.” -Gina Scarpulla (’07)
  • “When you’re in an interview, you’re equally interviewing the organization.” – David Duncan (’86)
  • Be your own biggest advocate—It’s your responsibility to do your best and seek out opportunities
  • Don’t be afraid to negotiate
  • Don’t be afraid to speak up with work-life balance

And finally, one of the last points emphasized by many of the alumni is a classic rule of thumb: “Be kind and treat others the way you want to be treated.”

Thank you to all alumni and students that came to another successful Communications Studies Careers Conference!

Special thanks to the following alumni for their participation:
Emily Anderson (’11)
Ron Burke (’85)
Kristin Buttersworth (’11)
Chelsea Coffman (’14)
Bradford Dickerson (’00)
David Duncan (’86)
Meghan Ely (’03)
Kara Frank (’12)
Kristin Gibson (’06, ’10)
Rebekah Porter Jackson (’03)
Carrie Klamut
Rebecca Knorr (’11)
Kendra Kojcsich
Alexandra Longest (’11)
Jacqueline Maginnis (’10)
Kelsey Mohring
Paula Polglase (’92)
Caitlyn Read
Allison Robertson (’07)
Gina Scarpulla (’07)
John Taschek