My UNCW experience has been interesting to say the least. I became a Seahawk during the Spring semester of 2017 as a First Year Spring Admit. This is a program that defers students to the Spring semester. I met all of my Freshman friends through this program – I loved it! The reason I choose UNCW is because I wanted to work at SeaWorld as a killer whale trainer and thought a marine biology degree would get me there. However, after one day of biology class, I remembered I wasn’t good at science and began my search for a new major. This was the best decision I would ever make. Not only because the Blackfish documentary opened my eyes to SeaWorld’s treatment of killer whales, but also, because it led me to the Department of Communication Studies.
On the search for a new major, I enrolled in COM 105. On the first exam for COM 105, I made a 70 and went home and cried to my roommates. Throughout that semester, I tried harder than I ever had in a course and ended up with the 3rd highest grade in the class – out of 150 students. I realized it was the only course that I was passionate about. The next semester, I enrolled in COM 200 and joined the Communication Studies Society (CSS).
Junior year began and I felt like I was finally finding my way through college. I was vice president of CSS and had made some awesome friends within the department. Shortly into the semester, Florence hit. It was a time filled with uncertainty. Luckily, we were able to return back home after a month of no school. I think we were all a little more appreciative that year.
As senior year kicked off, I found myself as president of CSS. My goal for CSS was to help COM majors grow professionally and personally. During my time as president, I threw a networking event, held Make the Most Of your Major (MMOM), a holiday party, and many other professional development meetings. But most importantly, I got to bond with other COM majors and professors. I think the best part about the COM department is the people.
Now as my final semester has been flipped upside down, I reminisce on the last few years. This semester, I was supposed to go on a study abroad trip to Italy, have my official last day of class, and say goodbye to my friends. This isn’t how I imagined this semester ending, but I’m trying to stay hopeful. I focus on our first core skill, confidence: Feeling able to do what you set out to do, mentally, emotionally, and physically. This semester, I set out to finish my college career on a high note and, using what I’ve learned in communication studies, I know that I will.
Allison Phillips, UNCW COM class of Spring 2020
Allison is a Communication Studies major with minors in Leadership Studies and Political Science. She plans to work in the marketing field after graduation.