Congratulations to all of our Fall 2015 graduates. We wish you all of the best! We had the privilege to interview CCI's Top graduate, Jessica Karsten on her time spent in the Advertising and Public Relations program. Looking back over the course of her undergraduate career Karsten says proudly, "I had an amazing experience in the ADPR program. It was comprehensive and practice-based, so it really prepared me for a career in the field. I had phenomenal professors with real-life experience who genuinely care about their students (shoutout to Dr. Abbey Levenshus and Laura Lemon), as well as wonderful advisors who helped me get all of my classes situated. It's thanks to them I was able to graduate a semester early with the skills and knowledge necessary for a career in PR."
As the top graduate from The College of CCI, what motivated you to keep such a high GPA? "I have always been passionate about school and learning. I enjoy studying a wide range of subjects, so even my non-major classes were of interest to me, including my science, English and theatre courses. Also, I've always worked to do everything in life to the best of my ability, and college was no exception."
What do you plan to pursue after graduation? "I will actually start working full time just three days after my graduation as the communications and marketing coordinator for the Knoxville Chamber of Commerce. I previously worked there as an intern and recently served as its part-time marketing and events assistant this past semester. I also plan to continue working as an usher at the Historic Tennessee Theatre, enjoy time with friends at the amazing local restaurants and watch Game of Thrones religiously."
Do you have any advice for undergraduates? "Join campus organizations that interest you, keep your resume polished and be sure to secure at least one internship. There is nothing like real-life experience to prepare you for your career, and it may turn into a full-time position following graduation. Beyond that, be sure to make time for yourself to do things you enjoy. Explore Downtown Knoxville, go see one of the shows at the Clarence Brown Theatre on campus and don't forget to sleep. College is great, and it will be over before you know it. Be sure to make the most of it!"