Comm Alums Share Experiences with Comm Students to Guide Them to Success

UMass Alumni virtually joined Communication students and faculty for the annual Alumni Career Event. Attendees had the opportunity to listen and talk to alums from different career stages and industries about their experiences while at UMass and to hear about their lives after graduation.

The nine alumni shared information they wish they had known or done while they were at UMass, such as: doing more internships and work studies, joining more clubs and extracurricular activities, taking advantage of resources and speakers who come to campus, and pushing themselves to get out of their comfort zones.

George Lentz ‘91 is the president and founder of Lentzhouse Media Group, a consulting and investment company. Lentz also formed Silver Shamrock Productions with the award-winning podcast producer Jon Cross and writer/poet James Wallace through which the trio produce original scripted audio entertainment that focuses on the horror/sci-fi and absurdist comedy genres.

“Follow your passion and what you are driven to do,” said Lentz. “If you follow what you are most passionate about, don’t worry about what business opportunities you will get. Be patient.”

Lentz said students need to start thinking like entrepreneurs. Also, he suggested that if you have an idea of what you want to do, try to find an internship in that area.

The alumni also shared their advice for students who are graduating this year. They emphasized the importance of getting out of your comfort zone, networking as much as possible, and challenging yourself.

Annelise Mahoney ‘17 is currently working in an elementary school while she still tries to figure out exactly what she wants to do and who she wants to be. She says she has not stopped dreaming about what's next, and that is the best thing she has learned since graduating.

“You have nothing to lose, just do it. Just because COVID-19 has stopped a lot of things, don’t let it stop you,” stated Mahoney.

For the second half of the event, students had the opportunity to join breakout rooms with the alums and ask questions about their varying professional experiences and advice. Students added to their professional networks and strengthened themselves with useful information to take their college and professional careers to the next level.

-- Emily Brooks '21