Graduation Reflection

Graduation reflection.

Have you really accomplished what you set out to do? Did you pick the right major? Do you have any regrets? While of course you have your doubts and your insecurities, these last four years have been the most eye-opening.

Here are a few of my personal greatest lessons:

  1. Pick a major you LOVE. I started out as a Biology major, I didn’t love biology but since being a doctor runs in the family I assumed this was my natural choice. I cannot be happier that I changed my mind to Communications and eventually, Public Relations as well. When you’re waking up everyday hating going to class this is NOT a good sign and you are doing school completely wrong. Find your passion, whether it be your major or job, and go for it!
  2. Make a balance! Sure it’d be easy to lock yourself in the Fondren dungeon with blinders on to the world. OR be that “guy/girl” that is out every night. It’s all about finding that balance.
  3. Your body loses its high school metabolism quite rapidly in college. Between Greenville Pizza and Jimmy John’s late-night delivery it’s not hard to imagine why. Get in a workout routine. Now is when it starts to matter. You’ll appreciate it at your high school reunion.
  4. Go on a group trip with your friends. Going on a trip with your friends pulls you out of the SMU bubble and bonds you in a new way. Whether it be Vegas, Cabo, or a trip to New Oreleans or Austin. Do it! Make memories.
  5. Join a group. I’m not saying you have to be in a sorority or fraternity. (though I loved mine with all my heart) Join a group and meet people. Become something bigger than yourself!
  6. Give back. There are a million ways to give back to your community. Do it! Whether its Habitat for Humanity or Relay for Life.
  7. Study Abroad. This is the most amazing and pivotal change you can give yourself in college. When I studied in Spain for a semester. I not only made/met incredible people and saw incredible things but, I feel in love with a whole new culture. Leave that comfort zone.
  8. Aspire to find a true mentor. While at SMU I had professors who I will remember until I die and professors I couldn’t even recall their class if my life depended on it. I was lucky enough to have been blessed with three amazing professors, Dr. Duhe (who I aspire to be), Professor Lee (who showed me your job and passion can be the same thing), and lastly Professor Salinas (who showed me humor is key). Though keep in mind your mentor does not have to be a professor!


My four years at SMU have had ups and downs and everything in-between. However, I would not trade this experience in for anything.


Google Gives Back Privacy

Google  (Mashable)


Google gives back privacy to students.

Google claims they have stopped scanning students’ emails following a lawsuit filed by California students last year. The legal battle began this March and came to a speedy conclusion. After claiming that Google violated federal and state privacy laws, which was tied to FERPA, they have lost the battle. Google rep claims that,

“…the company scans and indexes emails from all Apps for Education users. The company uses the data for potential advertising, among other purposes.”

In addition to the FERPA argument many advocacy groups point out is, “that even if Gmail users agree to Google’s terms, that doesn’t mean that non-subscribers who email with them do.” These arguments and general fuss has resulted in Google ending their data mining. It will be interested to see if they take this to a higher court or if the civil class action lawsuit have any monetary payouts. If so Mashable claims that, “If successful, that could lead to a payment to millions of Gmail users.” 

What do you think about Google’s data mining policy for those under 18? How do you feel about your email being used for data mining? Do you think that your privacy is at risk?

Read more on the initial lawsuit here

Racist Comments Lead to Losing Sponsors

Racist Comments Lead to Losing Sponsors for the Clippers.

Allegedly the owner of the NBA Clippers team, Donald Sterling, was caught saying some horrendous and racist comments. This has lead to numerous companies ending their sponsorship or suspending it. Personally, I think racism is deplorable however, a man of Sterling’s position has no excuse. It has been incredible how social media has literally blown up over this hot topic.

Even the players have reacted to these comments , the players warmed-up with their practice jerseys inside out to show their solidarity against the statements that were made. Also, as they ran out of the tunnel for Game 4 of the first-round playoffs they wore black wristbands or armbands.  As Clippers star guard could be heard shouting to his teammates on the way out,

“It’s just us, only us. We’re all we got.”


Here is the following list of lost/ suspended sponsors:

  • Yokohama Tire Corp: Suspended
  • Anheuser-Bush: Publicly supporting NBA’s investigation
  • Lumber Liquidators: Suspended
  • Amtrak: Determining if they will extended regular season sponsorship
  • LoanMart: Suspended
  • StateFarm: Suspended, continue campaigns with players
  • Sprint: Suspended
  • Kia: Suspended
  • Virgin America: Terminated
  • AQUAhydrate: Suspended
  • CarMax: Terminated
  • RedBull: Suspended, continue campaigns with players


Read more here


Mary Barra a Crisis Game Changer

Mary Barra a crisis game changer during General Motors current recall. Encase your are not up-to-date on the motor world news, General Motors has had a massive recall that has affected Upon reading a great article on Forbes on Barra I must admit, she is a game changer in the crisis world. The demand for transparency and two-way communication is not longer an option but, a requirement in our world today.

New Crisis Playbook

Facing the challenge of a recall would be daunting for any CEO, imagine being a brand-new, first female CEO in your industry and dealing with it. So far she has approached this crisis as a seasoned veteran. By promising to get to the bottom of what happened, engaging with the public on the General Motors Facebook, and handling herself in front of Congress, Barra has proven she can handle a massive crisis. She has utilized all facets of social media to reach her audience especially, when the target audience for your car in your recall is that of young adult age. It will be interesting to see how Barra will carry General Motors through this recall.

Check out Barra’s recall update here.

Obama on Between Two Ferns

Obama on Between Two Ferns for Zach Galifianakis’s Funny or Die show to promote enrollment of Affordable Care Act.

Funny or Die Images

Funny or Die Images

A surprisingly witty and snarky Obama kept Galifianakis on his toes throughout the interview. An example of their dry humor was when Galifianakis said, it must “stink” that Obama couldn’t run for a third term. He quickly rebutted with,

“If I ran a third time, it would be like doing a third Hangover movie…didn’t really work out very well did it.”

These sharp and comedic zingers weren’t the only points to come out of the show. Obama strategically and effectively communicated the Affordable Care Act to an audience he has been desperate to reach. Approaching the Millennials through an age appropriate, popular online platform like famous Funny or Die, is genius.

Like Obama on Between Two Ferns, to achieve your target audience you must:

  • Research and then do more research
  • Knowing your audience inside and out
  • Target them through the correct and applicable platforms
  • Don’t be afraid to standout from the norm

These steps are crucial. The success of these steps was proven when following Obama’s appearance, there was a healthy bump in the number of those who enrolled in the Affordable Care Act.


Social Media and Customer Loyalty

supplied from Getty Image

Social media and customer loyalty go hand-in-hand. I know many claim that our generation is one that lacks customer loyalty. That out loyalty resembles more of a gold fish that quickly forgets one company and moves onto another. This is not true.

Many companies assume that it is the consumers fault that the loyalty is not there, I would argue that to a certain extent it is the company’s fault. If a company isn’t with the times and utilizing social media to its fullest potential then, the young adult consumer is not willing to grow with the company. People want to stay connected with the products/companies they use.

The top three motivations of public social engagement are:

  1. Remuneration: seeking rewards and economic incentives, such as coupons giveaways, and job-related opportunities
  2. Entertainment: the relaxation, enjoyment and emotional attachment
  3. Information: the newest up-dates on the company or product

Even celebrities understand this, a great example is Alicia Keys who allowed her followers to hear her new album on her social media outlets. You can even vote for your the best celeb on social media for the Shorty Awards here. Forbes dived a little deeper into this in an awesome article.

Through liking the same page followers can engage with other followers to discuss the product. Essentially love creating more love for the product/company. Our generation does not have blind love and loyalty companies now have to earn it and I believe that is the big difference between the older generations.

Adreian Payne Basketball’s Gentleman

Adreian Payne is the gentleman sports was missing in a scandal ridden industry.

Very few of the “this restored my faith in humanity” videos ever truly achieves such a bold statement however, Michigan State Power Forward Adreian Payne did just that. Payne, a 6’9″ senior on the Spartans men’s basketball team is an unlikely companion for “Princess” Lacey Holsworth, an eight-year-old battling neuroblastoma. By an act of kismet, the two met when Payne was visiting the hospital she was undergoing treatment at. The friendship was instant and as you can see in the video below life changing:

As you can plainly see in the video this relationship is not a publicity stunt but one of mutual respect and love. Princess Lacey accompanied Payne on to the court during his senior night, he attended her fundraising party, and Payne even gave her the honor of helping him cut down the net after Michigan State won the Big Ten.


“She’s a special firend,” Payne told the Big Ten Network, “and she’s like a sister to me.” 

The coverage on this extraordinary friendship has even caught the attention of heavy weights like ESPN sports analyst, Jay Bilas.

The sports industry is frequently riddled with scandals ranging from drugs, DUI’s, animal abuse, and even murder. It is a breath of fresh air to see a gentlemen, like Payne, hopefully coming down the pipes to an exceptional pro career. This is the type of man and role model that hopefully companies will endorse and stand behind in the future.