The value of a college education

My name is Taylor and I am a senior Mass Communication major at Brenau University in Gainesville, Georgia. My concentration is Public Relations. After graduation in May, I plan to move to Nashville to pursue a career in Event Planning in the music industry.
I am from Bradenton, Florida, but love the Georgia mountains. I have been a collegiate soccer player since freshman year.

As jobs are becoming more competitive, everyone is advising college students to not only obtain their Bachelors degree, but a Masters as well. From personal experience, I am currently realizing that it is not about how many degrees you can graduate with, but how much experience you have and how much networking you have done in your field of interest.
As a senior that will graduate in May, I am finishing up the classes within my major, and trying to do as much networking and gaining as much experience as possible. As a communications major, experience is key for me to succeed. Keep in mind, if you are seeking a degree such as nursing or biology, as much school as you can get is how you will get a job after graduation. With fields such as marketing, business, and communications, it is about how much experience you can gather before you start in that particular field. Sure, everyone takes classes on how to write a press release and how to write effectively and the basics of business, but future employers want to know that you can apply those skills you have learned and that you have already applied the skills you have learned. This can be done through internships.
I already have three internships under my belt and am currently doing two. I can honestly say I have learned more from being out in the field than sitting in a classroom. Yes, what you learn in the classroom is very important. You have to be taught skills to know how to act when you are working at the internships.
Networking is also very important when it comes to landing a job after graduation. One very resourceful tool, that is also free, is a website called LinkedIn. It is a social media website for professionals. The website allows you to find people that are in your field of interest, and also in the town you are interested in living in. I want to become an Event Planner in Nashville, and have been able to connect and communicate with so many professionals based in Nashville. When you create a profile, you can upload a resume, the classes you have taken, job and internship experience, any work you have done such as marketing, graphic design, etc. The statement “it’s who you know” couldn’t be more true. A mentor of mine was a songwriter in Nashville, and because I know him and he knows what kind of student I am, he has helped me get in contact with people within the companies that I would want to work for one day.
To conclude, I am not demeaning school in any means. I have worked very hard at my academics, but also put great emphasis on gaining field experience so I can tell potential employers that yes, I have done what they are looking for before. Do not be afraid to put yourself out there and ask people if they know any ways for you to gain experience, and simply ask if they have any advice about the profession and the steps to getting there. The worst thing people can do is say no!

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