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Article - Small-town student finds a community that cares at UNL

Small-town student finds a community that cares at UNL

New grad feels grateful to the College of Journalism and Mass Communications.

Posted: mar, jun 9, 2015

Anna Schott grew up in Osceola, Neb. Her graduating class had just 21 students.

The transition to the huge student body at UNL, she says, was rough at first. But the people at the College of Journalism and Mass Communication helped her find her place. And her voice.

Anna, who graduated from UNL in May with a degree in public relations and advertising, now feels more than ready for the transition to the real world of work.

“I learned so much from real-life professionals talking to our classes,” she says, “and being able to apply what we did in the classroom was such good experience.”

Of the many words of advice from professors, she says, one piece stands apart in her mind – the importance of networking.

“Networking and the people you know and experiences you have trumps everything else,” she says. “You’re never going to go into an interview to be questioned what grade you got in that one class.” 

Her professors always encouraged her and the other students to voice their opinion in a civil way, one that makes other people feel comfortable. They told her to try to understand where people come from and to listen to diverse thoughts.

Anna is thankful for many people she met at the CoJMC. She felt part of a great community – one that reminds her of her hometown. She felt that everyone knew her name and really cared about her as a person.

“The journalism school has given me so much,” she says, “and to give that same experience to someone else, is just amazing. The opportunities and resources given to me are just phenomenal.” 

Sitting at graduation this past May, she was not only proud of herself but also of all the CoJMC classmates she sat with at the ceremony.

Anna’s first full-time position will be as marketing director for a startup company in Lincoln called the EcSell Institute, where she had been an intern during college.

“I’m a little nervous,” she says, “but I think it will be a good transition.”

If you would like to help promising journalism students like Anna, please consider giving to the College of Journalism Development Fund or contact the foundation’s David Belieu at 800-432-3216.

Story by Brooke Criswell, University of Nebraska Foundation public relations intern.
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