Jessie Robbins ’11 is honest about her initial assessment of Saint Mary’s. “I assumed this school was for ‘upper class girls' who could never relate to a small town girl,” says the native of Wheatland, Iowa. She is however, quick to admit that she was wrong. “I have made so many lifelong friendships with girls I would have never met had I not attended. I, a small town Iowa girl, am rooming with a girl from Southern California. In high school, I would have never thought we would have a lot in common. Saint Mary’s has really opened my eyes to other experiences, and has taught me to embrace every one of them.”
Jessie is majoring in communication studies with a concentration in mass communication. She recalls meeting with Professor Vince Berdayes, her advisor, about her major. “He really helped me out when I was so confused and overwhelmed about the whole college experience,” says Jessie. “A few days later when I saw him again in the dining hall he said hi to me first and remembered my name. It only reinforced how great faculty are here.”
With a minors in public relations and business administration, she is positioning herself for a possible future in radio/television work. She is in the process of applying for an internship at Country Music Television (CMT) in Nashville, Tenn. If she is offered the internship, she’ll go there with experience, having worked at Quad CityClear Channel Radio Group last summer in an internship. “This gave me an opportunity to see a different aspect of career choices available in my major while also complimenting my minor,” says Jessie of her experience. She also spent some time last semester as an intern in the Saint Mary’s Integrated Marketing and Communications Department (MarCom).
In MarCom Jessie says she was immersed into real life situations of public relations and marketing. “I sat in on a few meetings, wrote stories for the College’s Face to Face, interviewed and edited the Holiday video [on the Web site] while having my voice and opinions heard along the way,” says Jessie. “The video was so much fun. I got to see what everyone loved about our campus and community.” Click here to see the videos.
In addition to her studies and her internships, Jessie is the student director for the Office for Civic and Social Engagement (OSCE), where she works with Director Carrie Call, and Asst. Director, Olivia Critchlow. Calling the two “amazing,” Jessie says, “They really put my job in my hands and gave me room to become a leader. Both of them gave me the opportunity to find myself and grow as a person to build my organizational and communication skills while giving me more confidence in myself and my abilities.” Jessie is also a member of Lambda Pi Eta, the communications honors program, and she is the service co-chair for the Residence Hall Association (RHA).
Jessie’s education has been made possible in part through a scholarship from Saint Mary’s. “It’s an indescribable feeling knowing that hard work really does pay off for those who work hard.