By Chris Glenn
My name is Chris Glenn and I am a Junior Information Technology major. One of the things that I often think about is my legacy here at Florida State. People always talk about what their mark will be on FSU and we have the hashtag #leaveyourlegacy but it can be trivial to find that certain thing that you can provide that can change your university, college, major or a student organization.
In trying to find what my legacy could be I sought out several different organizations, many of them outside of my major and CCI. This year, I became interested in something bigger and I attended an informational session for University Ambassadors. Now the University Ambassadors work within the Visitor Center at FSU and we provide tours and services to a number of people; mainly prospective students and families, alumni, and various groups throughout the year. Over the last six months I have undergone a training process where I learned an array of information about the university and I now present that information to visitors every day. I have become an extension of the university; I’m trusted to be a reliable source for information and a responsible representative of the university.
As it pertains to my legacy, this opportunity has given me the ability to touch other’s lives; students that decide to go to college because of my tour and the experience that I share with them; or the first generation college student, like me, who chooses FSU. And of course the student that chooses FSU over UF. This gives me great drive and appreciation for this position. In order to make the most out of this opportunity, it requires a strong sense of leadership, not only to physically lead a tour, but to be confident in your knowledge of the university and because of the prestige of the position. In most cases, University Ambassadors are the first contact with Florida State University that a lot of students have. It’s important to understand the magnitude of this and how impactful it can be.
This is my legacy and I am incredibly appreciative of the opportunity to leave my legacy here at Florida State University.
By Anne Pollitt
Earlier this month, a group of students from both the Leadership Class, and STARS group traveled to Tampa to visit different High Schools and Middle Schools in the area. Our goal was to spread information and awareness about Florida State and the College of Communication and Information Program. Most of the classes visited were Information Technology or Engineering based.
While choosing what topics to discuss with the kids, as a group we looked back on different questions that we might have had at that age. We also received some guidance and requests from a few different teachers. Personally, we thought that cyber bullying would be an important topic to discuss with middle school students, and that a little bit more information about the FASFA and how to apply for scholarships. Teachers requested that we touch on Robotics, Cyber Security and Mobile Applications. Each group member chose a topic to perform research on, and then prepared a guide for everyone else to study. At the schools, we split classes into smaller groups.
We’ve found that the students become more open and willing to communicate and ask questions when they are not in a teacher-student setting. After going through the topics with each group, we were surprised at the knowledge these young students had about robotics and cyber security. The world has changed exponentially over the past 20 years, and the technology and resources that the students have these days are even vastly different from those that we had in school just a few years ago.
We then allowed time to open the groups to questions; we were prepared to answer as many questions as possible about the chosen topics, the CCI program, Florida State, and the college experience as a whole. We went into this experience with the intent of helping these students. There were some who were already decided on other Universities, and those who had no intention of attending college at all. It was important for us to be honest with the students; we were focused on reinforcing the confidence in these children that with the right resources, and information, then a college experience and a future career is possible for each and every one of them.
Overall, the trip was a great success. We used the topics that the students were interested in like robotics to help transition into open and honest conversations about college and the future. Winston Churchill once said, “We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.” The preparation and time that went into planning this outreach event was paid back tenfold. It is a truly rewarding experience to see the excitement in a student’s eye when you inspire them to not only think about but take charge of their future and have the desire to become the best that they possibly can. If this experience helped a student decide they wanted to come to Florida State for IT, or even simply attend college at all, then it was a job well done.
by Megan Gerace
So first off there seems to always be a lot of confusion about what ICT actually means. ICT stands for Information, Communication and Technology, a hybrid major that takes the best of both worlds from the Information Technology major and a variety of communication majors like Advertising and Public Relations, all majors in the College of Communication and Information. But why? Communication is an ever changing thing. And in today’s world communication is more and more done through technology, so it’d only make sense to bring those two worlds together! Pretty simple right?
If you’re sitting there scratching your head, thinking “Why hadn’t I thought of this before?!”, don’t worry, I was in your exact position before. I can tell you the exact moment too. It was my sophomore year here at FSU and I was determined to land one of the 36 spots available in the Public Relations major. Because of my duel credits from high school, I had some time to kill, so I took LIS3353 Technologies with Ebe Randeree. And it was in that class that I suddenly had my catharsis, communication and technology go hand-in-hand! Professor Randeree made me look at technology as more than an after thought in communication, but rather as a tool as to communicate through. A way for communication efforts to be seen and heard in a variety of ways, through a variety of outlets. I was hooked.
After that class, it was a slippery slope. I became drawn in by the variety of classes and options available to me by this expansive major. I couldn’t get enough, first website development, then website design, even mobile application development and social media management. The options were endless. I had been open to a whole world of communication that I had never really been exposed to before and I loved it. Not only did I get to satisfy my original thirst for traditional public relations and advertising alike with ICT’s wide range of course options, but I also found a new passion. A passion for technology all with the help of FSU’s Information, Communication and Technology major and I couldn’t be more grateful.
And I am not the only one to fall in love with the ICT major here at Florida State University, check out this video to see how ICT captured the eye of other students.
By Charles Grass
Sitting in my living room right now it’s hard to contemplate that four of the best years of my life have gone by. You can be told fifty times that your college experience is going to fly by but you cannot understand how true those statements are until you have experienced it firsthand. It truly feels like yesterday when I was staying in Wildwood dorms for freshmen orientation and now I’m less than 20 days from graduating and starting my life in Orlando.
There were so many things I did here at FSU that I could not have done anywhere else. The people I met here have shaped me and influenced me in the direction that I am heading in now. I’ve gone from feeling like an arrogant teenager to feeling like a man that stands for what he believes in and can take care of himself. I think one of the most important parts about college is branching off from your friends and family and really finding yourself. I’ve experienced a BCS National Championship season, lived in a dorm, apartment, and a house off campus, and I’ve gone to the FSU High Flying Circus. I’ve gone out with friends and spoken with leaders from various industries that have told me what they did to be successful. I’ve taken classes from such great Professors as Joseph Hellweg, Mark Ziegler, Ebe Randeree, and Joe Calhoun.
I think though that it really didn’t dawn on me that I was leaving all of this until just last week when I was part of a leadership group that gave an on campus tour to kids from Marianna High School. I saw myself in those kids and it made me so grateful for my time at FSU. My group was responsible for giving the kids a tour around the campus and showing them all of the buildings and amenities that FSU offers. I did my best to tell them about all the different opportunities that students are given at this University and all the ways to get involved.
It dawned on me halfway through the tour that this might be the last time I get to see all of these places that I have such fond memories of. My day was then transformed from giving a tedious tour to high school students to me re-living all of my past four years and becoming nostalgic about it. I tried my best to maintain my composure but I could not. I began to tell the 6 students that I was bringing around to such locations as Landis Green, Westcott Fountain, and Doak Campbell Stadium stories from my four years at FSU. I stopped attempting to sound professional and started begging the kids to come to FSU. I did this because I knew that even if they only experienced half of what I did at FSU, that they would be incredibly blessed. I saw myself in these young high school students and in that moment I knew how special and irreplaceable these four years at FSU had been and how I’ve never made a better decision in my life than to come to this college.
by Brittany Sullivan
For me, there was no question on whether or not I wanted to continue my education. I knew that I wanted to attend graduate school and receive a Master’s degree. For some, the decision is not so easily made especially in our field. Some feel that it’s more beneficial to enter the workforce immediately, which is a valid argument. In my opinion, furthering my education will only allow for more opportunities both professionally and financially. On average, 61% of those with Master’s degrees earn more than the median Bachelor’s degree-holder.
I graduated from The Florida State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Information, Communication and Technology with a minor in Business. In the months leading up to graduation I prepped for the GRE, took my exam, and researched graduate schools. Obviously it came down to only one option, returning to my alma mater.
Right after I heard about the Integrated Marketing Communications master’s program at Florida State, I knew it was exactly what I was looking for. The program encompassed everything I was interested in and even allows you to zone in on an emphasis area. In addition to working towards my Master’s degree, I’m working on receiving a Multicultural Marketing Communications certificate through the Center for Hispanic Marketing Communication. This center is unique to FSU and is the first of its kind in the United States.
I’m halfway through the program and so far I love it. It’s challenging at times, but I know in the end it will be worth it. I also have a job in the communications department at the Florida Board of Governors – State University System of Florida office. I think it’s important to have a job while attending graduate school, so you’re still gaining experience in the field.
I’m confident that upon graduation, I’ll able to find a great job with the education I’ve received from Florida State and the professional experience I have. If you’re debating whether or not a Master’s in IMC is right for you contact Betsy Crawford who is the Graduate Recruiter, she’s very helpful!
http://www9.georgetown.edu/grad/gppi/hpi/cew/pdfs/collegepayoff-summary.pdf (Page 5)
By Megan Gerace
So after I was hooked on the technology classes that the College of Communication and Information had to offer, I began to feel out what other opportunities where available to me through the college, and then I found it. I found WISE, Women In IT/ICT Sharing Experiences and it was a perfect fit. So what is WISE? WISE, themselves, say that they are an organization that “allows women to develop friendships, work with peers and other students at FSU, allowing them to have a group of friends who can help them in their classes, leading to better retention in the major.” However WISE is so much more to me. WISE lets me explore my major and ultimately the career field it is leading me to in ways most women my age will not be fortunate enough to experience.
First and foremost, WISE really gives insight into the professional realm of the major, which I don’t know about you, but this was a thought I tended to overlook towards the beginning of my college career. WISE challenges you to reevaluate how you approached your day-to-day, incorporating the professional mindset to prepare you for your future. There have been a variety of topics that I have really become aware of due to this amazing organization, ranging from managing your online presence in a professional manner (complete with a professional headshot session), preparing yourself for interviews and even how to hold a professional dialog of substance with someone.
Another invaluable opportunity that WISE has provided me with is the ample amount of networking I am exposed to. As a college student I was always unsure of how to go about networking and creating professional relationships with people already in the job field. But WISE gave me the opportunity to jump feet first in a networking scenario that didn’t seem so daunting and really allowed me to ease through the limbo state between student and professional and truly develop my networking abilities. On numerous occasions this organization hosted breakfasts, meet-and-greets and various other events where I got to meet other students in the college, professors within our college and local business women. At these meetings I really got to hone my networking skills in a nonthreatening manner. All of the people involved were incredibly warm and welcoming completely taking away any doubt or nervousness that I may have had about it. But these networking events not only served as a way for me to overcome any fears I may have had, but it also served as an way to obtain internships and jobs. I know personally the first time I came into contact with my previous internship was meeting the new Vice President of TCC’s Workforce Development at the WISE Breakfast two years ago.
So professional development and networking tends to be an everyday part of majority of the registered student organizations on campus you say? So what makes WISE so special then? Honestly for me the greatest opportunity WISE has provided for me to this date has been the company visits. For this the club advisors take a small group of members (usually no more than 15) to visit a local Tallahassee business in the IT or Communication business realm that is owned/ran by a woman. During these visits we get to hear the amazing business women’s stories, how they found their career path, the difficult decisions they’ve encountered and how they approach a work-life balance. Topics during these visits have truly given me insight to the real world problems and benefits of chasing after your dream career. Being a woman in a predominantly male dominated field it is important to be prepared for the decisions we will have to make and the challenges we will have to overcome. Such opportunities to hear established women’s stories and paths to success, along with being able to pick their brains about questions only someone who has encountered such things has really proved to be invaluable as I go on to making decisions about my future.
So don’t miss out, join WISE today!
By: Brittany Holland
If you’re waiting until the last minute of your college career to deactivate your Facebook and Twitter accounts because you’ve embarrassingly used #YOLO one too many times; I have some bad news for you: unfortunately it’s too late in the game. It is important to create and maintain a positive personal brand way before you’re graduating and applying for jobs. Having a professional presence in the social media is an act of leaving your “digital legacy.” Your brand precedes you so make sure it’s something you’re proud of – if you wouldn’t say it to your grandmother, you shouldn’t be posting it.
Have You “Googled” Yourself Lately?
The very first thing your future employers are doing before you even step foot into their office is their own research; so do you know what your search results are? Be aware of your privacy settings on all forms of social networks. You want the world to see what YOU want them to see. Employers want to know that you know what you’re talking about and you want them to be a part of your conversation. What you have to say is important and people ARE listening.
LinkedIn AKA “The Facebook for Professionals”
Say “bye-bye” to business cards! LinkedIn is a great way to start promoting your personal brand in a professional manner. Think of this as your virtual resume. You can upload all of your accomplishments and make posts to promote them. This network also allows you to connect with professionals, alumni, brands, companies, groups, etc. Great ways to help boost your profile is to upload a profile photo – wisely, link your Twitter account, share articles, and keep your profile up to date.
When creating a personal brand that is both social, and professional, it is important to be strategic. Know your strengths and skills you’ve gained in your experiences and make sure your resume includes keywords that prove it. Don’t be afraid of using hashtags to create and join in on the conversation. In communicating with professionals in your network, make sure to have an official signature at the bottom of your e-mails. First it’s all about creating a positive personal brand; then it’s all about selling it. Promote yourself as you would a brand – be proud of your brand.
The next Brand Yourself workshop will be held on Wednesday, April 23th at 5pm in Shores 006.