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Exceeding My Own Expectations in Integrated Marketing Communications


Nastausha is an Integrated Marketing Communications graduate student at West Virginia University who has a lot to say about her experience in the Reed College of Media. Between her experience with expert faculty members and her increased knowledge of consistent messaging across brands, Nastausha explains how ultimately, her IMC graduate degree has prepared her for real, marketable career success.

Tell me a little bit about yourself. 

My name is Nastausha Hefner, 29, from Weston, West Virginia.

I obtained my bachelor’s from Fairmont State University with a BS in Business Administration, and I will graduate May 2019 from WVU with my master’s in Integrated Marketing Communications! 

Exceeding My Expectations

What drew you to WVU's IMC program?

The  Integrated Marketing Communications program assists future marketers in understanding how different types of communication channels can work together to send relevant messages to a targeted audience with a budget. 

While obtaining my bachelor’s, I took an introduction to marketing course and found it very interesting and was eager to learn more. As an Administrative Assistant, prior to being promoted to Marketing Assistant at Stonewall Jackson Memorial Hospital, I assisted the Marketing Director and realized the importance that integrated marketing communications can have on a brand.

Tell me  about one faculty member who really made a difference in your education at WVU as a graduate student.

Professor Stacey Creely. During the Introduction to IMC course, she was very knowledgeable, helpful, and gave valuable feedback. She was quick in responding to my “dire needs of help."  Her encouragement and enthusiasm for the field helped me develop excitement about learning more from the IMC program.

Why do you think pursuing an advanced degree in IMC is important for people who want to promote innovation in your field?

I believe that  it is important to pursue an advanced degree in IMC because the marketing communications world is ever-evolving. Gaining additional knowledge of how to deliver messages across multiple communication channels really sets the foundation for a brand. A company can have the best products for the best prices, however, if consumers don not hear or see information about them, they are unaware. We are not in the days where newspaper articles are enough, the digital age is here and expanding quickly. In other words,  Increasing Knowledge= Better ROI.

How has WVU prepared you for success in your future endeavors?

Upon graduation,  I would like to obtain a career in the digital side of marketing. WVU’s IMC program has prepared me because the assignments and discussions are applicable to the real world. With the guidance and the encouragement from the excellent professors, they have transferred down valuable knowledge about the field. Ultimately, I am more confident in my future career goals.

What’s your favorite thing about WVU?

Naming just one favorite thing about WVU is impossible. WVU is an excellent university because the communication throughout the organization is the best that I have experienced thus far in my education. The ease of access to the professors and other support staff has been comforting throughout the journey.  The university, staff, students, and community of WVU really embodies the pride of being a mountaineer.

What advice do you have for prospective IMC students?

The IMC program is challenging, however, with hard work and dedication, you will succeed. The first step is to believe that you got this. Each course provides you with an anticipated number of hours you will spend on assignments and discussions… exceed that. Absorb all the information you are given because it will help you succeed in each course as well as your current or future career. Engage with the professors and classmates about real-life experiences because you will learn from those too.  Do not give up, take a deep breath, and move forward. This will be an accomplishment that you will be proud of because it was you who earned this for yourself.

Join the IMC community!

At West Virginia University, we understand that the marketing communications industry is changing at a fast rate.  We are dedicated to preparing people who are passionate about marketing communications to thrive in this competitive field by offering a graduate program in  Integrated Marketing Communications.  If you’re interested in establishing yourself as a thought leader in the field of marketing, we encourage you to  request more information or to  start your application today.