Job titles held by some recent master’s graduates include: account executive at Bohan Advertising/Marketing, assistant director of public information for a government agency in North Carolina, consumer research manager at Autotrader.com, designer at the Daily Advertiser, marketing engineer at Tetra Tech, and reporter at Poststar.com. Program graduates have gone on for doctoral studies at programs such as the University of Kansas and the University of Texas while others have stayed at the University of Tennessee. Read in-depth graduate success stories below.
I chose UT because it fit my requirements of having a reputable program in a great location. Through my master’s program, I learned important skills and understanding that have served me well in my professional life. I have learned to incorporate strategy into my public relations work, which provides better results than simply employing generic tactics with little consideration of the end result.
Assistant Director of Public Information
North Carolina Department of Insurance
Office of State Fire Marshal
I relocated to Knoxville from Tucson, Arizona because UT offered many options for graduate study. I was not ready to start school immediately so I began working at UT in the College of Business Administration (Center for Business and Economic Research). I worked full-time for two years when I finally decided I wanted to start a master’s program. After considerable research into programs and schools, I chose the College of Communication and Information in part because a formal study of communication would fill a hole I had in my job experience but also because I had been exposed to faculty all across campus and found CCI’s faculty to be very supportive, flexible, friendly, and dedicated.
I gained two very important experiences from the program. One: I mastered the art of juggling a full-time job and part-time program and a life by coming to terms with the fact that it was okay to ask for help from my colleagues and faculty. Two: I became much more comfortable expressing my ideas and thoughts to larger groups of diverse people and learning to accept others’ ideas and thoughts as well.
Upon graduation, my goal was to move to Washington, DC and leverage not only my work experience in public policy research but also my educational experience in communication and information to obtain a unique position that would not otherwise not be available to me without my unusual combination of skills, experience, and education. I now live in Washington, DC and after doing some freelance consulting for a lobbyist and an IT consultant, I have just started work as a Strategic Research Senior Analyst at the Corporate Executive Board. I am only at the beginning of understanding how the program will help me professionally, but I have no doubt that it helped me secure this position in the first place.
Stacia E. Couch (MS ’06)
Strategic Research Senior Analyst
Infrastructure Performance Improvement Lab Corporate Executive Board
I chose Tennessee because it offered the option to concentrate on science communication, and because the university offered me an assistantship. Without the financial aid, I probably wouldn’t have been able to attend.
I gained a much deeper understanding of science writing from my classes, particularly those taught by Dr. Mark Littmann. It takes an immense amount of skill to translate science of any kind into something that the general public will understand, care about and want to read about. And I’m sure, as an aspiring science writer, I’ll be working to improve those skills all of my life.
As an undergraduate English/biology student, I gained a much better understanding of the world of journalism, in which I am now employed. Most of this understanding didn’t come from my classes, but from my assistantship, through which I worked with the university’s Global Environmental Change Research Group. My job was to write articles about their research, all of which were published in the Knoxville News Sentinel’s science section. This experience has greatly benefited me, as I now work as a business and environment reporter at The Post-Star in Glens Falls, NY.
Erin DeMuth (MS ’04)
Business and Environment Writer
Glens Falls, NY