Tiafan Chen ’16, Staff Writer
Last Monday, November 4th Mike Romanella and Ashley Costa two graduates of the college paid a visit to Merrimack to talk about life after college. Both are said to be some of the best and brightest Mass Communication students who have attended the school. They took time out of their busy schedules to come back to Merrimack to give advice to current Mass communication students and share their success stories. Both students graduated last year as Mass Communication majors both achieving high GPAs.
Romanella currently works for an Advertising agency whose target market is people interested in buying new cars, his job is to edit and produce advertising for the company. While visiting he shared stories of his experiences while he was a student college. He always knew he wanted to end up in this field and was interested in video production from the time was in high school. Romanella took every communication production class at Merrimack and developed his skills further while experimenting all kinds of video making software. Final Cut Pro, iMovie, Photoshop and Adobe
were among the programs Romanella learned how to operate while he was at Merrimack. Having knowledge of these programs earned him a huge advantage over other candidates applying for the same jobs that was he and helped him earn the job he desired.
Costa is a video producer, editor and web designer at Everett Community Television. She previously worked at Boston’s Jam’n 94.5 Radio Station as an information designer. Unlike Romanella, Costa didn’t know she was interested in video production until her senior year when she made a film about Macbeth. Taking all kinds of classes while she was a student here really helped her true passion.
Both Costa and Romanella stressed how important internships are. Romanella had a great opportunity and got his first internship his freshmen year with ESPN. He also had internships and worked through his entire college career. He wrote for The Beacon, our school newspaper, for 3 years and became this Sports Editor his senior year. Costa started her first internship in a local media company during her sophomore year. Costa and Romanella highly recommend going out and searching for internship opportunities early in your college career. Work experience will make your résumé more eye-catching and stand out against competitor.
A Digital Portfolio is another important essential that a Communication major graduate should have. Both graduates strongly recommend saving all the work you have done both in and out of the classroom. Video clips, audio files, articles and blogs are all good materials for a digital portfolio. With an extensive résumé and digital portfolio, the chances of you getting a job after you graduate will increase. “When you are applying for jobs, don’t hesitate–apply, apply, and apply,” says Romanella. His advice is not to second guess yourself while applying and that applying for more gives you the opportunity to keep your options open.
At the end of their speeches, they remind us that you shouldn’t let opportunities slip out of your hand. To seize advantage of any opportunity, take many classes, try to find internships and get work experience as soon as possible. “One of the reasons that they’re successful is because of how driven and self motivated they were. They never said no,” says Mass Communication Professor Jacob Turner, who invited Romanella and Costa to speak. Mike Romanella and Ashley Costa’s speeches were enlightening and inspiring. We wish these two members of our Merrimack Family the best of luck in the future!