I think being a business student at UMassD gave me a lot of opportunities to explore how I was going to develop my personal brand in such a large industry. I have to thank professors and staff such as Anthony Baird and Cathy Curran. They each gave me the necessary tools to stand out and be a leader inside and outside the classroom.
Personal and professional development
Aside from developing your professional skills, I think its valuable to develop who you are as just a human. I took a sociology 300-level class as my free elective during my senior year. The class, which was taught by Professor Andrea Klimt, focused on immigration.
I knew I had to take the class because it was relevant not only to my personal life but also to today’s political climate. As part of my assignment for the course, I opted to help tutor adult students whose first language wasn’t English. This experience was so rewarding and in the end, gave me global exposure. It’s not always about yourself and when you have time to reflect on that, you grow.
The value of leadership activities
As a student, I worked on developing my leadership skills by serving on organizations and committees. Being in a leadership role is such a challenging, yet rewarding experience. I think being a leader requires you to learn how to be a team player, a better listener, and an organized planner.
I am more equipped in my professional role because of the practice I gained as a leader during my time at UMassD. Whether I was president or even a member of a club, the key takeaway for me was learning something new and gaining a new skill.
Many of the leadership roles that I was in throughout my college career required four main elements: listening first, demonstrating respect, delivering results, and recognizing opportunities for improvement. These are tools that continue to help me evolve as a successful leader and person.
Preparing to enter the real world
Pursuing an internship with Enterprise-Rent-A-Car definitely gave me the experience that recruiters are looking for on résumés. I was a management trainee intern responsible for selling rental car services and assisting in managing the assigned branch.
It was an important internship because I developed management and sales skills. The experience gave me the opportunity to apply knowledge gained in the classroom. The internship also taught me that sales may not be the only direction I want to pursue during my career.
Having an internship on my résumé gave me an added edge against other candidates. Recruiters understand college students aren’t working 9 to 5. However, they do want to know what you’re doing in your spare summers to become a professional.
Career path and goals
I currently work at Dell in a marketing rotational program, starting my first rotation in event planning. It is a great position for me considering my work experience as a concert committee president at UMassD. I get to apply many of the skills I developed such as organization, creativity, and teamwork. I also enjoy the fact that I’m doing event planning in such a creative space.
As for my long-term career goals, I plan to create my own event planning business in the future. I want to create business events as well as events that help shape communities for the better. UMassD will always hold such a significant place in my heart. It's a place that carried me for four years into what I am doing today. This inspires me to keep pushing forward.