Why COM Studies?

As graduation comes up, I’ve had a lot of people ask me why I choose to be a communication studies major, and well, I didn’t. I came to UNCW as undecided, thinking I’d pick up a journalism or English major since those were my favorite classes in high school. I quickly found out there wasn’t a journalism major, and I wasn’t committed to 4 years of English classes. So, I did the obvious thing, I went to majors fair. I remember walking around, looking at all the tables and booths, not really moving toward anything until I heard someone call out to me. The communication studies table was there, and the man presenting engaged me in conversation. He started telling me all about the classes I could take, the study abroad programs offered, and the careers I could have with COM. To be perfectly honest, all I really heard was “you can study abroad in Sweden, and there aren’t a lot of required math courses.” Later that day as I prepared for registration, I thought about this experience and signed up for Interpersonal Communication with my UNI class.

Choosing communication studies as my major wasn’t really a choice, but a pattern I fell into. I took interpersonal communication, public speaking, Introduction to Communication Studies, research methods, and then boom, I was a COM major. I kept taking the classes because I found them fascinating, but I still had no idea what I wanted to do with this degree. Then, I took integrated marketing communication. This was the first class that really showed me where I was headed. I continued to take IMC and Advertising courses, and because of those, I was finally able to figure out what I wanted to do with my communication studies degree.

For me, communication studies was not a choice, but a path I was drawn into. It was the best thing for me, and I was still able to get an English minor.

Looking back on the day I graduated from high school, I had envisioned an entirely different future for myself. I never would have thought I’d be graduating with my bachelor’s degree in communication studies in only 3 years. I never thought I’d be married before finishing my undergraduate degree. I have had the most incredible experiences here at UNCW as a communication studies major, and my only regret is not sticking around to check out the new dining hall.

 

-Eva Mewborn

Who Saw This Coming?

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Did I think that I was going to be in this spot I am in now four years ago? Haha no… When I was in high school I originally wanted to go to Appalachian State, but sadly I did not get in there, so here I am. Another obstacle I faced is that I was coming to UNCW as a spring admit. I was skeptical to come here because I thought it would be weird to come in a semester later than everyone else, but it ended up being one of the best decisions of my life. Now, picking a major was a different story. I was never one of those kids who knew exactly what I wanted to do when I was older so I would get ideas from T.V shows. I started out here wanting to major in business because that is the only place I thought you could take marketing classes, but once I figured out I could go the Communication Studies path, I did not turn back. I have been in one club since the beginning of my sophomore year and that is the High Seas. The High Seas has really been a big part of my college experience and has turned me into the performer I am now. If you would have told me as a freshman coming into college that I was going to be singing or even talking in front of 1000 people, I would not have believed you at all. This major and this school has brought me out of my shell and I am so glad that I ended up making the decision to come here because this school is way better than I could have ever imagined.

~Bryan Murray

My Final Steps

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One week from today, I will be taking some of the most important steps of my life, both as a UNCW student and a UNCW athlete. It is crazy to think that once I take those steps across the stage at graduation I will no longer be a UNCW student, and once I run the final 400 meters of my track career, I will no longer be an athlete. My experience as a UNCW student-athlete has been life changing. I accomplished things both in the classroom and on the track that I never thought would be possible.

I represented UNCW on the national level at the NCAA Headquarters.

I was elected as Vice President of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.

I found a major that I was actually really passionate about.

I was the feature student speaker in a video that was played in front of thousands of people on the Jumbotron in Trask.

I broke a UNCW Track and Field school record with my best friends in the 4x800m relay.

I was one of 13 women in the nation selected for a prestigious NCAA graduate scholarship.

The journey hasn’t been easy. There were times when I questioned if the early morning practices and late nights spent working on projects were worth it. These last four years have shaped me into the person I am today. UNCW will always be a part of my identity. I will take the lessons I have learned as a student-athlete and COM major wherever I go. Every step of the way.

-Jaime Mangold

Enjoy the Ride.

 

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Today I will be attending my last day of classes EVER at UNCW. What a bittersweet feeling. Four years ago, freshman year, I would’ve never imagined how amazing my time here at UNCW would be. I have made some of my best friends and favorite memories here and I wouldn’t change my experience for the world.

My college path started out like most freshman. I was leaving home for the first time (major home sickness), I was undecided and I was TERRIFIED. Being more of an introverted-homebody I wasn’t sure how I was going to do the whole “college” thing. But I slowly, very slowly, learned. Again, like most freshman girls I joined a sorority and immediately made some of my best friends, I was starting to feel like I was finding my place. I was finally feeling like I could actually do this whole college thing. The home sickness slowly started to fade and I was finally growing up.

School started to pick up and I was still undecided. I went from undecided, to social work, then right back to where I started. I had no idea what I wanted to do. It wasn’t until I took an Interpersonal Communication course that I found this major. I was finally taking a course which I felt like I was good at AND that I enjoyed. That next semester I decided to become a Communication major.

I cannot explain how beneficial this discipline is. We are taught how to communicate with people and understand them, and that is something that is extremely important in the world we live in now. We are shown DAILY the consequences of miscommunication, and they are not pretty.

Through this major I have learned a lot about myself. I have been able to (almost) overcome my fear of public speaking, I have learned how to successfully communicate a desired message, I have also learned that we only grow when we are pushed out of our comfort zones.

I would do anything to be in your guy’s shoes right now. To still have time in the beautiful school. If there is one piece of advice I could give you it would be to take full advantage of every second you have here. Go to the beach, walk the loop with your friends, sit in the amphitheater and soak in the sun, go downtown, take the time to talk to your professors, get to know your classmates and lastly breathe and enjoy every moment. There is nothing like these four years. You will learn more about yourself than you ever thought you could. By senior year you will be right where I am thanking all the people here who have made you the person you are today. So, good luck and ENJOY THE RIDE!!!

-Isabella Martinez

Hey, we’re not done yet!

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We aren’t done yet. We still have exams, then the school year will be over and, with that, I’ll be walking and receiving my Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies… And then I still won’t be done yet!

We all have a lot more to learn. We all have a lot more to learn!! This is why my favorite COM core skill is intellectual curiosity. We all need to be ready to continue to learn for the rest of our lives.

It’s just in my nature to learn; I came to UNCW graduating high school as valedictorian of a class of nearly 300 students (Please never look up my valedictorian speech.. I hadn’t taken COM 101 yet!) I’ve never been a great public speaker or general communicator. I honestly find myself to be quite weak in most of the core skills. But one thing is for sure: I can learn. I can put forth my best effort to keep learning everything about communication and even if I never master it I will just keep going. And eventually I will improve.

Anyhoozle (A great term I learned from Miss Gentry), I’ve loved every moment of being here at UNCW within the COM department. I started my journey in COM with COM 101 – Public Speaking with Miss Olsen and I was welcomed into this Leutze Hall family with open arms. I had terrible social anxiety and could barely speak to anyone at the time, but being in that class began to turn everything around for me. COM really saved me.

I’ve got a long summer of learning planned ahead and I’m already ready to get started. Never forget your intellectual curiosity. We all have more to learn.

-Andrew Moody ’17

Taking the Leap Proved to be Worth It

It’s safe to say that before I came to UNCW and became a communication studies major, I was living with my eyes closed. It’s hard to put into words just how thankful I am that I decided to attend UNCW, but I’ll give it my best shot.

I will start with the university as a whole.

Not only is it located in a beautiful place geographically, just look at the campus, but it is filled with people who are dedicated to getting the most out of every student. Transferring from a smaller school, I have to admit I was worried at first about becoming just another number lost in the crowd. I would soon realize that this was far from the case.

UNCW proved to be the perfect place to learn and grow

Not only did I feel right at home here, but my belief that the education I was going to receive would be superior, was confirmed.

As a transfer student going from already being a COM major, to PCOM, and forced to take public speaking, I was not exactly thrilled about my decision to attend UNCW my first semester.

Those initial feelings of doubt could not be farther from how I feel now.

After getting through the gateway courses, I started to realize how much being a COM major at UNCW had to offer. Taking courses outside of my focus such as interracial communication and political communication, combined with courses such as IMC I and Advertising II, helped me gain a broader perspective of the world and a better understanding of how everything is connected.

In addition to providing me with this broader and better understanding of the world, it also made me think more critically about it.

Everything is not always as it appears and it is important to understand how to think for yourself. Every course I have taken here has addressed this mindset, and is something that UNCW and the COM department should take great pride in.

Not every university prepares students equally

As a-soon-to be graduate from UNCW, I am more prepared to start my career than I could have ever imagined. I will be forever grateful for this, but I am more grateful for how prepared I will be to better myself in all aspects of my life.

My eyes are now open, and I will do my best to understand all I see.

Brian Clifford ’17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s to Being Thankful My Plan A Sucked.

My last blog post on here, wow. I can’t believe it’s over.

Alright, here we go-

I didn’t plan on going to UNCW; it just wasn’t my ‘Plan A’.

I didn’t plan on anything happening the way it did. But you know, life is funny like that.

My whole life, I had always lived by the beach. But my freshmen year of college at ECU made me feel completely landlocked, lost, and not at all satisfied with tailgates and purple/gold color coordination. The pirate’s life was in fact not for me. I was miserable, and sooo not into skipping class for football.

I didn’t have a Plan B, so I just went for it, and followed my way back to the coast and transferred.

I never really found my fit in the land of purple and gold. But when I came to UNCW, it felt like home. And the funniest thing about it? I’m here because my ‘Plan A’ failed miserably. I fell in love with my school, my major, and my new found home. And I was completely okay with skipping class for the beach.

I’ve taken in all that I can from the journey that has been the past 3 years. And I learned so much. I learned what a COM major at UNCW should learn, but I also learned 2 crucial life lessons from my college experience:

  1. Your plans will potentially suck and fail.
  2. Your failed plans will bring you to exactly where you need to be.

So here I am, right where I need to be, forever thankful that my ‘Plan A’ sucked.

UNCW will be my alma mater, and Wilmington will continue to be the place I call home. My personal and academic life plans failed for the better, and it all worked out just fine. I wish I could hug the whole university and all its’ students, faculty, and buildings because I will truly miss the Dub Life.

I hope those of you reading this take your time at UNCW and in Wilmington. It’s a beautiful little place in a wonderful city. I hope you don’t get discouraged when your plans fail you. Actually, you should plan for all of your plans to fail, even the most secure ones. And if your plan fails? Just ride the wave of it until you reach the shore you’re destined to land at.

It’ll be a hell of a ride, I promise.

Kayla Millie ’17