From a Recent Graduate to Current Senior
Advice from a recent BU Alumni.
This week, we’re featuring Sydney Narvaez, who graduated in May 2019 from COM with a B.A. in Public Relations. Narvaez provides some insight into what her professional life is like seven months post-grad and what advice she has for current seniors who are in the shoes she once was in, and what she did in college to get to where she is at now.
Tell us about what you were involved with at BU:
I was involved with the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, BUTV10, BU PRSSA, and I was also a COM and BU Admissions ambassador. I also participated in the BULA program and had 2 internships from that. I joined PRSSA in my sophomore year and junior year fall I was the programming coordinator, where I was in charge of scheduling speakers.
Can you describe what your current job role entails?
I work in the Entertainment industry, as a Talent Publicity Assistant in the talent department at Slate PR. We are personal publicists for actors and directors on the talent side, and also have an events team that handles the PR for entertainment-related events. I handle press inquiries for our clients, schedule photoshoots, and attend red carpet among many other responsibilities.
What was it like transitioning to a full-time job?
It was definitely a big adjustment. You go from having different class schedules to working full-time and it’s something you adapt to in your own way. Some have a different adaptation than others, but BU does prepare you. For me, this was being involved in clubs. I was always out of my dorm room and that prepared me to always be doing something.
When should seniors start looking for a full-time job?
I’d say seniors studying PR should look towards the end of April in the Spring semester. Careers in PR have pretty quick turnovers, especially in the entertainment industry, should it be of interest. I interviewed for my current job the day after graduation, received the job offer the next day, and officially started working about three weeks later.
Is it too late to get involved senior year?
Definitely not! Being involved looks good on your resume. Having leadership positions in clubs is helpful. You can apply for an internship for the spring semester, and use those connections to help you obtain a full-time role. You can highlight certain skills that can be transferable to other roles.
What advice do you have for students who weren’t super involved in extracurriculars in college?
People who haven’t done a lot: You should be focusing on using your connections, whether it's PRSSA and the speakers every week who are locally based in Boston. Meet with them on the weekends, later in the day, ask for coffee and see what advice they have after working in the industry for so long and what they look for in a potential candidate.
Did PRSSA prepare you for life after graduation?
I didn’t know much about PR when I joined, but hearing from speakers actually taught me about the PR field more than in classes. I got to hear from people who actually worked in the field. The regional conference and national conferences also teach you a lot. From my role as a programming coordinator, it’s applicable to my job responsibilities now.
What networking advice do you have?
Stay in touch with people from your past internships because they could help with references when applying for jobs and finding more connections. Work with the BU Career Center because they have a huge alumni network. Meet with alumni - even if it's just meeting for coffee and learning about their job. Go through the BU Alumni Network and COM Alumni Center. Use your connections that BU offers or your own from past experiences. Make sure to maintain those strong connections.
What general advice do you have for seniors?
Just enjoy your time on campus and what you have left. When I was a senior, everyone was stressed about jobs. I kept trying to live in the moment because it is the last few months you have on campus. Having graduated I miss that community and environment. It’ll all work out!
Feel free to email Sydney here for any tips + advice.