I'm a Proud Communication Student

Let's Talk About Being a Communications Student

We get a lot of grief about our "low work-load" and easy classes, but let's get the stereotypes out of the way.

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Everyone and their mother have opinions about different college majors, which ones are easy and those that are more difficult. Going into communications, more specifically public relations (PR), was a simple choice for me. I have loved to read and write since a young age, and have developed more skills in presenting and public speaking. After choosing my major I got a lot of questions about what exactly public relations is and what types of jobs it would offer.

That the number one problem when people assume things about communications majors is that they don't really know what each major entails or the work and skills it requires.

I have heard many different guesses about what PR careers are, varying from Olivia Pope on Scandal to C.J. from West Wing. The truth is you can't really believe what you see on TV when thinking about any profession. Take Grey's Anatomy into consideration, there are so many articles and videos explaining how the show really doesn't show the life of a surgeon at all. Which is kind of the point, these shows aren't documentaries or supposed to depict real life. They are centered around drama and romance, with intense scenarios to keep the viewers hooked. So long story short, what you see on TV for any profession isn't a version of reality for anyone.

Another large issue about stereotypes for communications students is that we don't do any difficult or 'real' academic work and breeze by the college.

My god, this one of the most irritating assumptions of all. Being a communications student doesn't mean we have fluff work or do things with hallow meanings. We have work, from 12 page papers to 20 minute presentations. Things like this aren't easy, and if you assume they are you haven't done them to a communications standard. When we write a paper every single point and sentence is closely looked at for grammatical errors and accuracy. We don't get to fill our papers by citing academic research and call it a day. (I am in no way saying doing papers like this is easy. But in reality they are in a completely different ball park from what we are expected of in the communications school.) There are few majors outside of communications that require the dedication and detail to such specific things.

Every class is easy and our professors really only teach us things the common person would know.

If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me what I actually learn in class I would have a good lump-sum. People think communications is simply writing, reading and talking, and how far from the truth they are. Currently I take a class on persuasion, where just today we learned the techniques cult leaders use to 'persuade' members to join. (Just to be clear, while what cult leaders do can be considered persuasion, since it takes away free will and choice researchers consider it more mind control.) While in my international advertising and pr class we are focusing on different countries and how companies must chose how they promote a product depending on different cultures. In sports promotions we have had speakers from the Golden State Warriors, Green Bay Packers, ESPN Milwaukee, Milwaukee Brewers, and the Chicago Cubs. All of which have given us an insight to the communication world within sports. PR strategies has us focusing on different companies who have had recent controversy and creating a case study on the aftermath and response to public opinion. Explain to me how a psychology or bioengineer would do in those classes. That doesn't mean I think either of those majors are easy, I would probably fail an upper level psychology course and would drop out the first day of any bioscience class. But I don't claim either of those major are easy, so why do people get to do it to mine?

We don't have to worry about getting a job after graduation because there are so many in our field.

This one is just a big fat lie. I don't know a single communications student that isn't worried about getting a job after graduation after their sophomore year. We all do internships in the hopes the company will higher us on after we graduate or recommend us to another company who will. The thing with communication jobs is that it's all about who you know and the connections you make. Just take a look at our LinkedIn profiles, they can be pretty intense. Jobs are hard to come by, despite almost every company needing a communications department or person. Getting a job in the field you prefer while heading in the direction you want is really difficult. So let's stop downplaying the job search for communication students, we have it just as rough as you do.

In the real world, anyone can do what we do.

One of the hardest parts about being a communications major is constantly being told that anyone can do what you do, basically making your major and work in school useless. For some reason, everyone outside of the communications school thinks they can read and write just as well, so that means they can do everything we do. I'm not trying to be cocky, but they can't. A history major can't write an advertising campaign for a company or give a speech on persuading people to give them money for a nonprofit organization. Let's be real, you can't do what we do, because it DOES require hard work and effort to learn how to succeed in it.

To wrap things up, it would be great if everyone could give communication majors a break. Yeah, we joke and laugh when you rag on our majors and our work load, but that doesn't mean we're okay with it. You discrediting the field we are paying money to study and want to work in feels like shit. At the end of the day, you don't have the right to say we have an easy work load because you don't actually know what our workload is like. You don't know what goes on behind the scenes at the communication school or the work and dedication it takes to be a communications student.

From, a proud communications student

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Why Nursing School Is Different Than Any Other Major

Because most other majors can't kill someone accidentally by adding wrong.
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College is hard. Between studying for numerous amounts of tests and balancing eating, working out, maintaining a social life, and somehow not breaking your bank account, it’s no wonder a common conversation among students is “how many mental breakdowns did you have this week?” Every major will pose its own challenges; that’s truth. Nursing school, however, is a special kind of tough that only other nursing majors can understand.

SEE ALSO: Quit Bashing Radford University

Nurses are the backbone and unsung hero of healthcare. Their job is to advocate for the patient, collaborate care among all other healthcare team members, carry out physician orders, recognize and report patient progress (or lack thereof), run interference for the patient with any unwanted visitors, research and validate evidence based practice, all while maintaining a certain aurora of confidence for patients and their loved ones that “everything will be okay” and “I’ve got this under control”. If that sounds like a lot; that’s because it is. The majority of skills that we learn that make good nurses cannot actually be taught in theory classes. It’s the hours of actual practice and a certain knack for caring for people- all people- that makes a good nurse great. The countless, unrelenting hours that are spent on the floor in clinical humble us, we know that we’re not great yet, but we’re trying.

Our professors expect us to be humble as well. Nurses do not seek gold stars for their actions, instead the precedence that is set for us to that we “do the right thing because it is the right thing to do”. Most nursing programs grading scales are different. To us, a failing grade isn’t actually getting a 69 or lower, it’s an 80. And that makes sense; no one would want a nurse who only understand 70% of what is happening in the body. We have to understand the normal body response, what happens when things go wrong, why it happens the way it does, and how to properly intervene. We want to learn, it interests us, and we know that the long theory classes and the hard days on the floor are just to make us better. However, any triumph, anytime you do well, whatever small victory that may feel like for you, it just what is supposed to happen- it’s what is expected, and we still have much to learn.

I look back on my decision to take on nursing school, and I often find myself questioning: why? There are so many other majors out there that offer job security, or that help people, or would challenge me just as much. But, when I think of being a nurse- it’s what fulfills me. There’s something that the title holds that makes me feel complete (and that same fact is going to resonate with anyone who wants to love their job). I wouldn’t change the decision I made for anything, I love what I am learning to do and I feel that it’s part of what makes me who I am. The other students who I have met through nursing school are some of the most amazing people I have ever come into contact with, and the professors have helped me understand so much more about myself than I thought possible.

Nursing is treating and understanding the human response. Meaning that it’s not just the disease process, or the action of the medication, or the care that we provide, but that nurses treat the way in which people deal, react, feel, and cope with good news, bad news, terrible procedures, hospital stays and being completely dependent on other people. And the fact of the matter is that all people are different. There is no one magic treatment that will always work for every patient. In addition to course work, the clinical hours, the passion and drive to want to be a nurse, and the difficulty that comes with any medical profession, we have to understand each individual patient, as people and not their illness. And, in order to do that so much self discovery goes on each day to recognize where you are and how you are coping with everything coming your way.

What is taught in nursing school goes far beyond just textbook information or step by step procedures. We have to learn, and quickly, how to help and connect with people on a level which most struggle to accomplish in a lifetime. It's a different kind of instruction, and it either takes place quickly or not at all. The quality of nurse you become depends on it. Nursing school is different, not harder or better than any other school, just different.

SEE ALSO: Stop Putting Down Radford University



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Body Image Lessons That I Didn't Learn From A Professor

What I realized about body image my freshman year of college

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Girls usually struggle with self image in general. But the game changes when it's time to go to college. When you are constantly surrounded by your peers, you begin to compare all of the little things they do to you. You compare their bodies to yours. You try to figure out what they are doing that you're not. Or vice versa, why they don't have to do anything to look the way they do. But by the end of my first year, I realized that I would never be happy with myself if I kept thinking this way. So I recorded some realizations I had throughout the year that helped me to improve my body image.

My body is, and never will be the same as any other girl... and that's okay

Different sized and shaped strawberries

https://picjumbo.com/strawberries-with-yellow-background/

It can be so easy in college to compare your body to the girls that surround you. Like the one's live with and you see on a daily basis. There is no point in comparing apples to oranges, so why would you compare your body to a girl who was made completely different? So what you can't fit into her party pants, you can rock another pair just as well.

What works for her, might not work for me

Daily Planner

https://kaboompics.com/photo/9447/planners-organizers-in-bed-women-s-home-office

With different body types, comes different food and exercise needs. Some girls don't need to work out or eat healthy to keep a slim frame. Some girls are naturally muscular. Your routine needs to be catered to you, and there is no need to analyze what someone else eats or does to try to attain their stature. You have to do what feels right for YOUR body to have a good self image.

Don't spend too much time on istagram

https://stocksnap.io/photo/JUC6R3PPLE

Obviously social media effects our body image because of how easily and frequently photos are edited and then presented for the most likes. So if there is a certain account that always makes you feel bad when you see their content, unfollow, and take that aspect out of your life. However, because social media is unavoidable you can't completely escape all the provoking images. So when scrolling, think positively about those who's pictures you see, don't compare, and be aware of the previous lessons.

It's okay for your body to fluctuate

https://pixabay.com/photos/scale-diet-fat-health-tape-weight-403585/

The weight and look of your body can easily fluctuate, It's just natural. And in the same way your life fluctuates, your body may follow along and thats not a big deal! In exam season, there might not be enough time to go to the gym everyday. Or during the holidays there might be an increase of indulgence in treats. But its all okay as long as your getting things done or enjoying life. The only time it becomes an issue if the fluctuations turn unhealthy.

Cut out the negativity

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If a friend is constantly complaining to you about their body, it can trigger distress in you, and set you back. So if someone else's body image issues are interfering with you mentally, you need to call them out on their B.S. or stop allowing them say those things in front of you.

Wear clothes that you feel comfortable in

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If you wear things that you feel comfortable in, then you wont constantly be thinking about how your stomach, legs, or arms look throughout the day. Wear something that you are confident in, even if it means wearing leggings every day of the week!

I'm not a little kid anymore, therefore my body is not going to look like one

https://unsplash.com/photos/sGSBkfK1hJU

Curves and changes that come after high school can take anyone by surprise, but it's supposed to happen. You can't really be mad at biology...you can only find the beauty in it.

Everyone has their own insecurities

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Even if someone has your ideal body, odds are they still despise theirs. I have met friends in college that are stick skinny, yet are self conscious about it. I know curvy girls that are very insecure. And even an "average" body type has a thousand things that they nit-pick about themselves. No one has their dream body and never will, which is why I had to learn to love the little things about mine.

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