Alumni

Savinee Dancs

Associate Program Manager

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Wesley Davenport

DodgerVision Crew Member

Los Angeles Dodgers

Wesley Davenport is living the career he only could have dreamed of. Wesley is currently an employee for the Los Angeles Dodgers working with the video production crew. Davenport graduated from CSUSB in the spring of 2013 with a B.A. in Mass Communication as well as a minor in Film studies. When asked about how he got his current position he noted that video production was something he did for fun but decided once at CSUSB to jump into the field. "I started doing video production as a hobby, and when I got here I just decided to go all in," Wesley noted.

When asked if he has met any Dodger celebrities, he has noted several. "Yea I have like Vin Scully all of the time always saying hello," he added. He noted that while most see them as super-human people, folks like Vin Scully are just as normal as any regular person. "We share the same dining hall and restrooms. They stand in line for lunch just like you and me." When asked about how his experience is at Dodger Stadium with that organization, he summed it up with one word: "wonderful." "The day I was interviewed there was really intimidating, but the people have welcomed me with open arms. I'm living a dream."

He has some guidance and advice for any person that has a goal of a career in the Communication field. "You don't have to go far for internships. KOLA-FM, The 66ers in minor league baseball, minor league hockey all have great internship programs. You don't need to be in Los Angeles if you can't afford to go far. The important thing is you just have to go for it." Wesley Davenport is currently in his second season with the Los Angeles Dodgers and hopes to continue with them in the foreseeable future.


Paul Dudley

Promotions Director

KOLA 99.9

Our very own Coyote, Paul Dudley tells CSUSB students at the Symposium what he loves about his career, and how he has applied his degree in the field of Communication. Dudley graduated from CSUSB in 2011 with a Bachelor's in Mass Communication. He is now working full time for the Radio Station KOLA 99.9 FM, as their Promotions and Marketing Director, and works part time as a radio personality for 96.7 KCAL.

When asked about how he landed his career, he mentioned he was very fortunate. He was MC'ing an event for his fraternity and he was introduced to the General Manager (GM) who is now his boss. The GM invited Dudley to do an internship with him just three months before graduation. Dudley's current project in marketing with KOLA is working on a big annual promotion that is focused on women ages 25-55.

All summer long his team's main goal is to get people out of their office and into theme parks. Their focus is on fun in the sun and getting paid for qualifying people for a chance to win a brand new Chevrolet. "CSUSB is unique in the fact that it's not like other schools that just teaches you the theory of your field. Here at Cal State you really get a feel for the real world prior to graduation and you're immediately able to apply the skills you learn," mentions Dudley. Rod Metts, Lacey Kendall, and Jim Smart are among the list of professors who give the students a feel for the field. "Lacey Kendal, Radio Manager for Coyote Radio was one who really stood out to me because she assured me that you didn't need to be a junior or a senior to be on air," says Dudley. When asked about what advice he would like to give students, Dudley said, "The biggest thing is don't rely on these job websites, like Career Builder and Access. You need to go out there and get internships, meet people, and work from the bottom up." Professors here at CSUSB truly do care for their students and are willing to supply them with all the skills needed to succeed in the field of Communication. So what are you waiting for - come here, go anywhere.


Melanie Hunter

Account Manager (Publicist)

CLD PR and Chic Little Devil Style House

In attendance for the 2014 Communication Studies Symposium was alumnus Melanie Hunter. Since graduating a short time ago Ms. Hunter has already climbed her way up the ladder and landed the dream job she only fantasized of while attending CSUSB. Ms. Hunter currently works as an Entertainment/Fashion publicist in the Los Angeles area and continues to expand her interests in the field of entertainment.

Melanie began her college career at CSUSB as an English major, simply enjoying the bliss of writing. In her sophomore year she developed a curiosity for other majors, fixed on discovering where her hidden passion lay. After her classes with Professor Smart, in which she jokingly stated to the students in the Public Relations panels, "he ripped my papers apart." She explained that without his rigorous teachings she would not have the talent she has today.

Hunter made the final decision to change her major to Mass Communication and began interning early to gain as much experience in the field as she could, while simultaneously working at Radio Disney and retail stores. When asked what her favorite aspect of being a Communication Major was she replied, "I just liked the idea of talking about relevant things, yes there are textbooks, but its all very relatable to what is happening now, and it kept me interested in my classes." With so much experience, knowledge, and talent Melanie was offered a job at a Communications firm just days after graduating. Her time here was unforgettable and she owes much of her success to CSUSB and the amazing faculty she still keeps in contact with today.


Katelyn Eaton

DodgerVision Crew Member, Los Angeles Dodgers and Game Day Director

Ontario Reign Hockey

Katelyn Eaton recently graduated from CSUSB and explains that she enjoyed getting a Communications Degree, "I got involved in the school and on campus, I worked for Local Matters and the video department. I feel that this helped to build real world experience. I had a really great time."

After graduation Katelyn explains succeeding in her chosen career was a little difficult but ended up with great benefits. "I was willing to take any job that I could get and that helped me because I was able to just get experience and that's what employers are looking for, people who have experience." She gives this advice to current CSUSB students, "find the programs that are offered, get involved, and take the classes that offer specific skills."

Looking back on her experience here at CSUSB, Katelyn happily remembers two of her communication professors. "I took as many classes as I could with Professor Charles Metts and it was the most amazing experience. He is eccentric and is willing to teach you real stuff, real things you need to know in the real world. Mike Wichman also taught me so many things I never thought I would need to know. Both of them made my experience here the best," said Katelyn.


Kelly Koehler

Account Executive, Westbound Communications (waiting for confirmation today)

The Communication Studies Department welcomed Kelly Koehler to the annual Symposium to tell our students about the opportunities in the field. Koehler graduated from CSUSB with a bachelor's degree in Mass Communication. She now works for Westbound Communications, as an Account Executive and as an Intern Program Coordinator. Koehler said, "For students it sometimes seems hectic not knowing what to do in the field since it's so broad but its fine because that's how I felt."

Her advice to students is to "embrace it, take every single opportunity that comes your way, even if it may not be directly connected to what you think you want to do, it can always open the door for you." For Koehler her ideal job was to become a journalist, but "journalism" is not what it once was because the field in itself has evolved. So instead of journalism, Koehler does Public Relations because it allows her "to act as a journalist" for her company and it's a secure job.

She mentions to those interested in an internship to email her a resume and formally apply. The website is www.WestboundCommunications.com, there you can easily apply for an internship. The internships are year round (every quarter) and Westbound is currently accepting resumes to fill positions for the summer. When asked what professors stood out to her she mentioned Jim Smart, because he not only taught her what she knows, but also helped her write a letter of recommendation.

Koehler is still in touch with current professors and mentioned how important it was to maintain that connection with people in your career, especially because they can help you in the long run. In fact, Kendall Lacey is going to MC an event for Koehler. Talk about connections in the field.


Sean Mason

Producer & Video Editor

Lucas Oil Products

Since graduating in 2012, Sean Mason has already had the success that many Communication graduates can only dream of. In the short time between earning his B.A. and now, Sean has worked on commercials, features, on set, and much more.

Sean started his college academic career in Computer Science solely for his interest in computers, then ventured into becoming an English major where he thought that developing writing skills would help him with his comedic hobby. It wasn't until he enrolled in a video production class with Professor Metts for fun that he realized Communication was where his passion lies. Eventually changing majors and pursuing his newfound interest full force, he took on a position with our very own television broadcasting station here on campus, Local Matters. The experience gained in Local Matters was such a positive one; he continued with the program and eventually took on a position working for the station.

When asked what he considered to be the most vital experience from his time at CSUSB he confidently replied, "The thing that I learned the most for sure is just the concepts of video production, which never changes." Sean talked very highly of the academic excellence within his major and believes that without the hands-on and encouraging faculty at CSUSB, his knowledge and preparation for his field it would not be where it is today.

Sean currently works as a Video Editor for Lucas Oil and continues to maintain close relationships with his former professors here at CSUSB.


Carmen Murillo-Moyeda

Public Affairs Marketing Specialist

CSUSB

Mrs. Carmen Murillo- Moyeda chose to enter the Undergraduate program in Communication Studies at CSUSB. She focused on this major because she knew this area of study would provide her with an abundance of skills and knowledge that could apply to various aspects of her future careers. Once she entered the Graduate Program Carmen had a 'Glowing Experience' working with wonderful department faculty and staff. Carmen commended various Professors that mentored her through the Graduate program for their support and guidance. A few of her Professors that dedicated their time to assisting her through the program successfully were Dr. Brian Heisterkamp, Dr. Risa Dickson and Dr. Mary Fong.

Carmen's experience of getting into the job market was different then most students. She was already successfully employed at CSUSB. Her dilema was, how am I going to make my new degree fit into my current line of work? She then realized her new degree and her previous work experience had a perfect applicability in Human Resources. After working in that department for several years she transitioned into the Public Affairs Department. Carmen strongly believes it is up to us to determine our own success. She emphasized "Things do not come to us, we have to go out and make it happen."

Carmen recommends students take the time to research the companies they want to work for. By doing so, this can create a potential bond between the company's philosophy and the prospective employee's principals. She also emphasized that, although students attend college to get a degree to make money, money is not everything. Carmen's advice to CSUSB Public Relations students is to research Fortune 500 companies that have quality Public Relations Departments. Once students have done their research they should be prepared for interviews with both good resumes and business cards. In addition, Carmen states that persistence is a key factor in making oneself known to the prospective employer, but she also warned of the significance of knowing the difference between persistence and annoyance. From her past experience in Human Resources, Carmen stressed the importance of making sure the first contact letter to the prospective employer is correctly formatted and is crisp in its content. Lastly, she recommends sending a follow-up letter to prospective employers about a week and a half later. Doing so keeps the lines of communication open for future contact.

Carmen truly believes the CSUSB faculty is dedicated and invested in helping their students succeed. She believes the professors care about students regardless of whether they are in the Undergraduate or Graduate Programs. She feels the professors in the Communication Studies Department made themselves available to students for extra help with flexible office hours and prompt return of both emails and phone messages.


Brian Nettles

Producer

Fox Sports West


Ginger Ontiveros

Executive Director

Victor Valley College Foundation

Alumni Ginger Ontiveros attended Victor Valley College and transferred to CSUSB. She describes her experience obtaining a Communication Degree as an easy process. By following a carefully arranged academic plan Ginger was able to easily navigate through classes while leaving open opportunities for different areas of interest should they change. Initially a Broadcast major, Ginger discovered that a Public Relations concentration was ideal for her.

While in school she worked for the Victorville Chamber of Commerce. After graduation she began working at the Barstow Chamber of Commerce. She was later recruited to work as a general manager for Tanger Outlets, and was later promoted to the National Director of Tourism and Marketing. She currently works as the Executive Director of Victor Valley College.

With her many years of experience Ginger provided great advice for CSUSB students. "Be careful about what order you take classes in, leave options open till the end so you don't take extra classes and leave options for different areas of interest," said Ginger. But she couldn't stress more that students need to get experience. " Find a way to get experience and make sure it's as close as where you want to go because that will accelerate your career and provide you with some networking contacts that can help you when you graduate," said Ginger.


Jacob Poore

Marketing/Communication Specialist

CSUSB