Year Graduated: 2012
Major at Michigan: Communications, Spanish
Share the story of why you chose your major.
I declared my Spanish major early on, knowing that I had a passion for the language and did not want to stop advancing my studies. I wanted to compliment this major with another concentration that would challenge me to learn how to think critically in today's world. I had a vague interest in business, but did not know how I would approach this. I used communications as a vehicle to study business from a broad perspective. I refined the upper level courses I took by the industries I was interested in: mostly computer, internet and mobile communications classes. I stayed true to myself by majoring in something I was passionate about (Spanish), and something that I have always maintained a strength in (Communications). When I was an underclassman, it was easy to feel lost in the big sea that is LSA. Once I realized that I was able to carve out my own path, and choose the courses I could take inside out and outside of my major I felt comfortable and confident in my LSA niche. I took College of Engineering, School of Information, Business School and Screen Arts and Cultures courses! Having the freedom to continue to explore my interests allowed me to find a career that coincides with my passions.
At Michigan, I spent most of my time outside the classroom…
...with my business fraternity. Whether it was recruiting new members, learning about career opportunities, or dressing up in 80's clothing and going bowling, I spent a lot of time with this group of peers who I respected, admired, mentored and shared similar interests with throughout my four years at Michigan.
What story stands out to you in your first year on the job?
I work in IT at Cisco, where I am surrounded by many technically-minded individuals who ensure strict efficiency of the company's technology. In this environment I was able to offer a diverse perspective because of my communications background from day one. Once people on my greater team learned about my specialization in communications they began approaching me for advice and feedback on communications strategy and execution. Eventually my director and manager presented me with an opportunity to work on an overall communications strategy project for our team. I am constantly reminded of the choice I made in undergrad to follow my strengths and passions and major in communications.
What’s next in your story? (next steps, future plans)
I plan on getting involved in the greater San Francisco community. I want to meet new people in the area, learn about new businesses and start ups and understand the industry in Silicon Valley. I think it's important to keep a focus on "extracurricular activities" in the real world, as a means of continuing to develop yourself professionally and personally.
What is one thing every student should have on their “career to-do” list?
Every student should take the time to explore themselves and their interests in college. Volunteer for an unpaid internship, shadow a local professional, join a club, and get involved with something that you are curious about. These experiences will stick with you forever and serve as an experience that helped you understand your career interests. As Sanjay Gupta said in the Spring 2012 commencement: "When summarizing your life, you should be able to write this sentence: 'I am who I always wanted to be.'"
To learn more about careers in consulting/business analyst:
Use O.Net Online, the Occupational Information Network, for an overview of management analyst.
Contact The Career Center at 734-764-7460 to find out how you can learn more about this field.
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