COM Day 2017: ‘Together Toward Tomorrow’

By Brianna Hernandez

“Seek truth without fear or favor” were the words political journalist Christina Bellantoni closed her speech with at Thursday’s annual COM Day.

Her words spoke volumes to those at the annual COM Day, an event created and produced by the communication department and held in the Bronco Student Center, aiming to highlight the various forms and importance of communication in the professional world.

“We want students of all types of majors to come to this event, because every field of work needs communication in order to succeed in a career or job,” said Carmen Mendez, a fourth-year public relations student who worked the event.

The theme of this year’s COM Day was titled “Together Toward Tomorrow” and opened up space for conversation between professionals and students to better understand how communication brings people together and requires skill.

Speakers from different backgrounds”from graphic design, engineering, journalism, media and sports”came together to provide insight to students on how they got to their positions and the role of communication in them.

One presentation gathered five speakers on a panel to discuss the “Steps To Success After Graduation,” in which they answered questions and offered advice to students who may not be sure of the direction they want to take following graduation.

Kimberly Sumida, a presenter on the panel, explained her story of working as an insurance agent before landing a job in social media on campus as Associated Students, Inc. communication and social media coordinator.

Many graduates to-be experience a wave of anxiety leading up to their graduation if they do not have a job lined up.

The speakers at COM Day wanted to change that, offering suggestions and personal anecdotes into how students can improve their odds of getting hired by acquiring good professional communication skills.

Across the hall in Ursa Minor, students heard from Jet Propulsion Laboratory engineers Deanna Smith and Peter Xaypraseuth on new innovations at the laboratory and how their careers lead them to work in the cutting-edge industry of science.

Another part of adequate communication skills are acing interviews and having a killer resume that sets people apart from other applicants.

During this event, workshops were held to offer students a hands-on learning experience regarding their already acquired set of professional skills.

Every college student has most likely applied for a job, created a resume and been on an interview, but few have truly mastered these crucial steps to getting a job.

Cherrie Peters, a career counselor and advocate of strong resumes, gave a lecture to students on the do’s and dont’s of submitting resumes, as well as what not to do in interviews.

She stressed the importance of attentiveness, eye contact, strong verbal skills and body language to let students know that employers notice more than one would imagine.

Through the words of professionals, students learned that clear communication sets the pathway to a better career in all fields of work and is a valuable trait at all levels.

Students who won scholarships and awards at COM Day

Eviana Vergara / The Poly Post

Students who won scholarships and awards at COM Day

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