After taking that last exam, and thinking “Holy shit, I’m done with school forever,” I started to panic.

Thought I’d End Up A Journalist, But It Wasn’t A Match

Now I have a degree in Mass Communications, but I am not so sure journalism is really what I want to do. How am I going to get a job? What am I even qualified for? What skills do I even have? I have not been this stressed since the first day of Dr. Motta’s History & Principles of Communications Law.

And with that thought, I started to reflect.

I have developed so many skills and have been given so many opportunities here at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg (USFSP). While I know it’s time to move onto the next phase of my life, I need to reflect on some Thank U’s before I go to what is next for me.

It was my first semester in the journalism department, and let’s just say I was certainly not a natural. Photo courtesy of Bailey Mosley/Connect. 

One Taught Me Perfection

I’ve dealt with tough graders before, but nothing will compare to the grueling moments of waiting for Dr. Silvia to read off my grade for my recent article. It was my first semester in the journalism department, and let’s just say I was certainly not a natural.

Article after article, I kept getting major points off for pesky AP Style rules I clearly could not get the hang of. Luckily, we were assigned press releases, which I knew I had mastered.

Biting my fingernails, he finally got to me.

“This is by far the best lead I have read,” hearing that felt better than Ecstasy. But that didn’t last long as he continued,

“So why did I give you such a low grade?”

The word educated instead of educate. Damn it. I was so annoyed, but I never forgot that. A year later, as I was interning for a public relations company in Nashville, you better believe my electronic press kits and press releases were flawless.

Thank U for educated me, Dr. Silvia.

One Taught Me Passion

Did I go through three job titles before finally realizing I have no idea what I wanna do? Absolutely. That’s because in communications, there’s no limit to what you can do. I was offered a position as a videographer with USFSP Connect after my first semester. I loved exploring the videography field with all the gadgets that the digital magazine had to offer. Then the following semester, I was asked to be a writer.

I was pumping out a lot of fun articles such as How not to get Arrested on St. Patrick’s Day or The Truth About Traveling with Bae. I was having a blast and started to realize I really understand an audience and what they wanted to read more so than how to write in AP Style (sorry, Haley).

It wasn’t just me who noticed it either. As I started my last semester at USFSP, I was offered a promotion as the Marketing Director of Connect.

If you would have told me four years ago that I would know how to do all those things instead of just the one specification, I would have told you you’re nuts. However, I learned I am so passionate about communications as a whole. The diverse skills and how each skill intertwines and plays a huge part in every company intrigues me to no end. It’s like a puzzle on how to create the best content and how to connect it to its audience.

Thank U, Connect, for bringing out my passion.

One Taught Me Patience

Ah yes, the misfortunate sight of the Mac rainbow beach ball appearance just when I was about to save my final video project. Hours of editing and possible vision impairment from staring at the screen for just too long. I would have never thought of myself as technologically savvy, so it was a surprise to even myself when I signed up for a mini-mester in Advanced Video Storytelling. Eight hours a day with a less than optional two hour lab after sounded like a real snooze fest. However, with Casey Frechette and Chris Campbell there was never a dull moment. I don’t think anyone owns as many wigs and costumes as these two do. These characters taught me not to sweat the small stuff and reminded me to laugh a little. They made those almost 10 hour days fly by. At the end of it all, I became really confident in video skills. I even made my own mini documentary. Rainbow beach ball issues and all.

Thank U, Chris and Casey (and all your wacky characters).

Sunday I’ll Walk Down The Aisle…

 I walked the stage Sunday with my graduation cap decorated, my gown ironed and the biggest smile on my face. Despite the nerves of starting this next chapter, I know I am fully equipped for whatever life is going to throw at me. How could I not be? USF, look what you have taught me. I cannot be more proud to be a Bull.

Thank USF, Next.

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