One of my favorite things about Nazareth is the variety of classes and learning opportunities available to students. Thanks to small class sizes, averaging about 18 students per class, students can really tailor their educational experience to fit their individual needs. Students are able to build great relationships with professors, and get crucial advice from people with incredible experience in their respective fields. Whether you’re attending conferences related to your area of study, or networking with local business leaders, there are endless possibilities for students to learn outside of the classroom. During my time at Nazareth, I’ve been lucky enough to take part in a number of these opportunities, and I feel much more prepared for my life’s work because of it!
During my freshman year, I was unsure of what exactly I wanted to study at Nazareth. After taking a Principles of Marketing course, I decided I really enjoyed the material I was learning. What really helped me decide to pursue marketing as a career was attending an event held by Digital Rochester called “Marketing to Millennials” with Professor Mark Weber. At the event, I had the opportunity to hear from a Market Research Manager at Hulu, and a business reporter from the Rochester Business Journal. I also was able to network with representatives from local advertising agencies and marketing companies around Rochester. As a freshman, this was an invaluable experience, and definitely something I couldn’t have learned in a traditional classroom setting. Getting the chance to connect with people working in my field helped me decide what I wanted to do in the future, and opened my eyes to the availability of different jobs in marketing.
When I began my minor program in communications and media, I had the chance to attend a number of events for class credit. One of the most interesting opportunities was when my Writing for Digital Media class was invited to live tweet the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra’s season preview concert. Utilizing what I learned in the course, I shared news from the RPO’s upcoming season announcement and had an exclusive first look at the special performances and guests coming to Rochester. Social media is a crucial part of my future career, and gaining first-hand experience utilizing it was an incredible opportunity.
Speaking of social media, one of my favorite off-campus learning opportunities was attending Upstate Social Sessions (pictured above the title) at the George Eastman Museum. The event, which was organized in-part by Professor Leah Stacy, saw 30 different speakers at 14 different events covering various topics related to the field of social media. Of these events, my favorite was a discussion on livestreaming video facilitated by NPR’s Evan Dawson and WROC’s Adam Chodak. I also loved hearing about the importance of storytelling in social media through photography from Austin Henry Wallace, Blink-182’s tour photographer. It was incredible to hear stories and advice from perspectives vastly different from what I was used to in class.
Students don’t even have to leave campus to learn from experts in their field outside of class. Virtually every major has an associated club where members discuss relevant issues, and bring in guest speakers to talk with students. In the Marketing Club at Naz, speakers from companies and advertising agencies around Rochester visit during monthly meetings to provide their insight on different career fields. I’ve had the chance to hear stories from representatives at Constellation Brands, ESL Federal Credit Union, and Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, as well as multiple advertising agencies across Rochester. At one of these meetings, I met with employees from Butler/Till, which helped me land an internship at the company. In addition to club meetings, professors often organize opportunities to meet professionals working in fields that interest their students. In my Media Ethics class, I was able to hear stories from guest speakers including former Rochester mayoral candidate Rachel Barnhart, and numerous reporters from the Democrat & Chronicle newspaper.
Nazareth’s classes are taught by experts in their respective fields, and students can gain so much valuable experience during lectures as they pursue their degree. When combined with incredible partnerships and opportunities to learn outside of the classroom, there is no end to the knowledge students can gain through their unique Naz experience.