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Meet the Class of Spring 2021

Class of Spring 2021

At the conclusion of each semester, the WVU Marketing Communications Programs are excited to celebrate our graduates. Meet the members of the class of Spring 2021 who have successfully completed their studies!

Marriah Menchaca

Marriah Menchaca

M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications 2021
Social Media Specialist, Seattle University Marketing and Communications
Seattle, WA

Why did you choose to pursue a WVU Marketing Communications Graduate Program?

Already working in the marketing and communications field, I felt that I lacked knowledge in some areas which encouraged me to pursue a masters. I chose the IMC program because it offered a number of courses that could deepen my understanding of all aspects that go into marketing and communications. Furthermore, these courses were taught by industry leaders who have come from unique backgrounds and had the ability to offer various perspectives.

What was your favorite course and why?

I do not know if I had a favorite course. If anything, I would say, surprisingly, IMC 636-Capstone. It was interesting to see how far I had come from starting in IMC 610, from understanding the language better, and having a new sense of confidence in myself within this field. Developing a campaign start to finish and scoring a perfect A on it, was the best way to end my time in the IMC program.

What advise do you have to those considering the programs?

As cliché as this sounds, like Nike, just do it! The IMC program has the ability to provide you with a suitable course option to expand your knowledge in this field whether you are focused on Social Media, Public Relations, Campaigns, Digital Marketing, Higher Ed Marketing, and more. Though the courses are only 8-weeks, within those 8-weeks you learn a plethora of information. The IMC program ultimately provides you with real-world experience that you can apply to your everyday job almost immediately.

What are your plans for after graduation and future career goals?

As previously mentioned, I started remotely last week as the Social Media Specialist for Seattle University in Seattle, WA; I will be moving to Seattle in July! In future, I hope to be a Marketing and Communications Director for a Higher Education Institution.

 Christopher Morlock

Christopher Morlock

M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications 2021
Current: College Recruitment Specialist, West Virginia University John Chambers College of Business and Economics.
Starting June 7: Campaign Program Manager, West Virginia University Foundation
Morgantown, WV

Why did you choose to pursue a WVU Marketing Communications Graduate Program?

I chose the WVU IMC Graduate Program because I have always been interested in integrated marketing and the modality fit my work schedule. My supervisor was a former IMC graduate and I felt that after our conversations the program would be a perfect fit. Starting with Introduction to IMC (610), I felt at home immediately. When I took IMC 615 and started my Creative Strategy area of emphasis, my creative freedom felt limitless. I was able to unlock a hidden skills and thinking I have not been able to achieve in previous courses. This was my most enjoyable, influential, and valuable degree I have pursued. The faculty members were engaging in every class and I consider them mentors, friends, and colleagues now.

What was your favorite course and why?

This is tough because it is a tie between 615 (Creative Strategy) and 636 (Campaigns). IMC 615: Creative Strategy with Larry Stultz inspired me to create out of the box campaigns during and after his course. The coursework never felt like a class for me. It was fun and showed my passions. IMC 636: Campaigns with Bonnie Harris tied everything we learned in the program and applied it. This course is expected to be challenging, but she was willing to help if we needed it along the way. Because of my experience in 615, I was able to create a unique campaign for 636. Professor Harris pushed me to my limits in terms of what I was able to accomplish. Both classes have contributed to my portfolio significantly.

What advise do you have to those considering the programs?

Do it or at least try it. The faculty will support you and the material will come naturally. This program was perfect because it was able to accommodate my busy travel schedule. I recommend it to any professional who works in marketing and communications. This program will allow to you to enhance your skills, continue your education, and continue your current career.

What are your plans for after graduation and future career goals?

It is with great excitement that I am moving on from the West Virginia University Chambers College to begin as the Campaign Program Manager at the West Virginia University Foundation. This position will allow me to utilize my IMC skills by launching a new digital platform and creating content for it. As someone who is a 3x graduate of WVU, it has been a dream of mine to work at the foundation. I have the IMC program to thank for the skills and education to help pursue my dream.

Depending on the workload at the foundation, I am considering starting my own agency on the side. I’ve had 3 IMC professors tell me that I should strongly consider it (after settling in my new job and taking a vacation).

Erin Fields

Erin Fields

M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications 2021
Program Coordinator, WVU Office of Graduate Admissions
Morgantown, WV

Why did you choose to pursue a WVU Marketing Communications Graduate Program?

Not only was going to graduate school a professional goal of mine because I knew I wanted to get plugged into the higher education industry, but also a personal goal of mine as well. My mother graduated from WVU with her master's degree too, so we've got a unique Mountaineer bond! It is super cool to be able to experience both sides of that coin. When I first started the program, I worked as a Graduate Assistant, and then by the time I graduated, I became a full-time WVU employee working in marketing/recruitment. I'd definitely say investing in the program has paid off for me!

What was your favorite course and why?

My favorite course was Higher Education Marketing. Dr. King has been a fantastic professional to be able to learn from inside and outside of the classroom. Additionally, I enjoyed being able to connect and have genuine discussions with other students who shared that same passion for education as I did.

What advice do you have to those considering the programs?

Upfront, it is a little overwhelming because graduate school is different than anything else you've experienced up to this point. However, always remember that there is a HUGE community of people you gain that not only are willing, but wanting to help you on this journey. There is this mega misconception that community is unable to be built as well online compared to in-person, and I have to immediately debunk that from the get-go here. The WVU IMC community builds genuine friendships and connections through interaction, empathy, and opportunity. A few of my classmates became wonderful friends of mine (shoutout to Alexis Rogers and Leah Schoolcraft), and now we talk about anything/everything together from marketing trends to why we love the Philadelphia Flyers' mascot and everything in-between.

What are your plans moving forward after graduation and future career goals?

I'm not really sure what kind of future God holds for me at the moment, but I do know that whatever it is, I'm excited to live it out day by day. I've been truly blessed to be able to build my career here at WVU, and eventually, I'd love to pursue my Doctorate...but I think my brain definitely needs a break before I start that though!

Ruth Deely

Ruth Deely

M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications 2021
Graphic Designer, Statler College of Engineering WVU
Morgantown, WV

Why did you choose to pursue a WVU Marketing Communications Graduate Program?

I knew I wanted to continue my education after I completed my undergrad but wasn’t sure what program would work for me until I learned about WVU’s IMC program. It had the flexibility of being online with a curriculum that was both engaging and interesting. I’m truly grateful for the connections I’ve made and the skills I’ve sharpened through my education.

What was your favorite course and why?

IMC 636: Capstone-Campaigns was my favorite course of the IMC program! The curriculum challenged me to apply everything I’d learned from the program and stretch myself professionally to produce a final campaign I could be proud of.

What advise do you have to those considering the programs?

Don’t be afraid to ask your professors for help. They are a valuable resource and want to see you succeed.

What are your plans for after graduation and future career goals?

After graduation, I am working remotely for WVU’s Statler College as a graphic designer in the marketing and communications department and relocating to Charlotte, NC. My hopes for the future are to remain teachable as a professional and allow my future interactions to sharpen me for the workforce.

Olivia Poole

Olivia Poole

M.S. Integrated Marketing Communications 2021
Customer Service Representative for The City of Shaker Heights
Cleveland, OH

What was your favorite course and why?

IMC 641: Social Media and Marketing. In this course I was able to feel the most creative and pick a topic I actually had a strong interest in which was ice cream. Not just any ice cream, Halo Top. We were able to select a client and develop a social media marketing plan. Through this course we were able to learn the importance of trust and transparency in social media marketing. This course doves deep in your creativity and have you think on ways you would change prescription of a companies social media. That’s interesting because we all use social media and I never realize how a companies or brand media is structure influences myself or others.

What advise do you have to those considering the programs?

Advice I would give is stay true and honest to yourself. This process isn’t easy but keep reminding yourself why you decided to pursue something that will have a great impact on your life.

What are your plans for after graduation and future career goals?

My goals is to find something I’m passionate about and in the field I’m getting my degree in.


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