SJMC Ambassadors Spotlight
Brooke Larsen (B.A journalism and mass communications, Spanish ‘19) started at the University of Iowa as a pre- business major and a Spanish minor. Her business career started and ended all thanks to a class called math for business.
It wasn’t until she met with her freshman year advisor she learned business was not her passion.
“I told him I wanted my creativity and natural energy to be challenged and appreciated,” Brooke says. “He encouraged me to look into the School of Journalism and Mass Communications and one week later I declared it as my major.”
Iowa’s journalism school requires students to have a second area of study. Because of this unique requirement, Brooke was able to focus 24 semester hours on Spanish, while also having time to get a certificate in event planning.
Before Brooke started school at Iowa, she knew she wanted to study abroad a semester. During her Spring semester of 2018, she had the opportunity to study in Seville, Spain for five months.
“Studying in Spain was the best thing I could have done, not just as a Spanish student, but as a college student,” Brooke says. “I encourage all students to study abroad if they can. Traveling is so important because it pushes you outside your comfort zone and allows you to see the world from a different perspective.”
The opportunities Iowa’s school of journalism have given her are endless. Currently, Brooke works for the University of Iowa College of Education in the Office of Strategic Communications. She is the writing, social media and events intern and wouldn’t have had this opportunity if it wasn’t for the connections she has made being a journalism major.
Her favorite memory as a journalism major was traveling to New York City and interviewing University of Iowa Journalism alumni for a marketing project. She worked on this project with four other students, a SJMC faculty member and the CEO of EGR International, an engagement agency in New York City.
“Working on this project helped me discovery my passion for marketing. I gained real life experience in what it takes to create a brand from scratch and make into something that motivates people to act and engage.”
To future students in Iowa’s journalism program Brooke says “Don’t be afraid of your professors. Their job is to help you and your job is to learn from them. You only have four years of undergrad and coming from a fourth-year student, it will be over before you know it. Get to know your professors and let them help and lead you in the direction of discovery and success.”
If any part of Brooke’s story has resonated with you, feel free to reach out to her with any questions you might have at firstname.lastname@example.org