Many members of SUNY Oswego’s Class of 2013, preparing for Commencement activities on Saturday, May 18, have spent the past few years linking to their future.
Cydni Williams, a double major in graphic design and marketing, will move to Ann Arbor, Mich., to become a full-time account manager for Google. Her job will entail working with a large number of clients in small- and medium-size businesses to help them optimize their ad space and use of media.
She had two summer internships with Google that led to this position, and said her ability to solve problems with graphic design made her stand out during this work. Williams advises students to dream big and “don’t be afraid that things may be out of your reach.”
Williams said being the assistant director of Oswego’s Student Association Programming Board her sophomore year gave her translatable organizational and people skills. “Student organizations are a very diverse bunch, which sort of reflects the diversity of Google because it’s such a big company and it’s always evolving,” she explained.
Tyler Edic’s new job will keep him on the SUNY Oswego campus as associate director of communication for alumni and development. He will put his broadcasting and mass communication degree to work creating video and multimedia content, while maintaining and expanding the operation’s social media and web presence.
“I learned so much in classes about video production and public speaking, through getting involved with the college TV station WTOP and the Lewis B. O’Donnell Media Summit, and interning at ‘Late Night with David Letterman,'” Edic said. He advises current and future students to “do as much as you can, as fast as you can. Find something that interests you.”
Learning to lead
Bradley Frate’s long-term plans involve medical school, but first he will spend a year as an operating room surgical technician at Rochester General Hospital. His experiences include two international research opportunities through Oswego’s Global Laboratory program: performing cancer research at Universidad de Iberoamerica medical school in Costa Rica and helping conduct an ecological survey of Brazil’s vast Pantanal region.
Frate also earned many awards and leadership roles among campus organizations. “I have learned through the leadership positions that I have held and currently hold at SUNY Oswego that leadership is not a genetic gift or family legacy,” he said. “Becoming a leader is an intentional process of growth that must be lived out through life experiences.”
Communication and social interaction major Kyle Jones is starting his professional sales career working for SmartWatt Energy. He credits the college’s student success center, the Compass, with making him more proactive in his job search, helping develop his resume and showing how to work a career fair — where he came away with four interested companies and two job offers.
“Inside the classroom, I credit the presentations I have done. I prepared for them like it was ‘game day’ and I always wanted to perform my best,” Jones said. “Outside of the classroom I credit snowboard instructing, which taught me how to believe in what I am saying. A successful salesman is confident, assertive and truly believes in the product they sell.”
Lindsay Martell’s combined MBA/bachelor’s in accounting will take her in front of a classroom this summer — teaching two courses in intermediate accounting at her alma mater — then to a job with KPMG in Syracuse as an audit associate this fall.
Martell said Oswego professors who do “a superior job” helped prepare her for the next steps.
“Not only do they provide an enjoyable and valuable classroom experience, but they have gone above and beyond outside the classroom to prepare me for a successful educational and professional career,” she said.
For Kyle Powlina, graduating with a history major and museum studies minor, his future will involve bringing the past to life. He landed a coveted summer internship at the National Archives in Washington, D.C., as a reference archivist, “mainly helping the public, people who come in researching their genealogy and other projects,” he said.
Next is graduate school, where he committed to the University of Maryland for a dual degree in history and library science.
“They stress internships, hands-on work, and that’s one of the things I like about it, as well as being so close to D.C. where there are so many opportunities,” Powlina said.
Internships and classes during his Oswego years prepared him by providing many research and writing opportunities, he added.
Ebony Howard and Wendy Ruiz hope to translate their graduate education degrees into teaching in high-need schools in New York City after working and learning in city classrooms under the college’s Oswego Residency Initiative for Teacher Excellence program for the past year.
“Every child should have access to and be provided with a high-quality education regardless of their socioeconomic status or where they live,” said New York City native Howard, adding a need for high-quality, passionate teachers is a key part of the equation.
“Every day I have new stories and ideas that I share with my friends and family,” said Ruiz, who comes from Fulton and also earned a bachelor’s degree in biology from Oswego. “Although I grew up in a very different environment than most of the students I have encountered, I believe that I have a lot to offer for that reason. I want to teach them not only how to be successful in an academic setting but to show them how to become lifelong learners.”
For Oswego’s May Commencement, graduates of the School of Business and School of Education will participate in the morning ceremony, starting at 9 a.m. in the Campus Center arena.
The afternoon Commencement, beginning at 1:30 p.m., will honor graduates of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the School of Communication, Media and the Arts.
More than 1,650 students, including more than 1,400 undergraduates, are eligible to take part in the dual ceremonies.
A live webcast will stream from a link on the www.oswego.edu home page, with a live broadcast airing on Time Warner Cable Channel 96.