Through IAS’s Mentor Chats program, alumni Martin Corpus and Candice Plendl connected with students in Jennifer Atkinson’s BIS 499 Capstone Portfolio course to share their career paths and experiences navigating the professional world as new graduates.
Mentor Chats are designed to assist students and recent grads with career exploration, networking, and learning about a range of professional trajectories. Both Corpus and Plendl were happy to share how they’ve translated their education and continued to grow in their careers.
Martin Corpus graduated in Media & Communication Studies in 2017. He is a freelance, multi-discipline creative media and art specialist who recently earned a Master of Creative Industries degree from Macquarie University in New South Wales, Australia. Corpus offered students these key takeaways:
- Pacing yourself in transitioning between "life focuses" is paramount. Rushing into "what's next" could lead to missing important steps.
- Reflection is everything. No artist can move forward without remembering where they've been. Part of my artist identity is sharing my work and encouraging my audience to look at me to see my potential within the creative world rather than allow their perceptions to falsely define it.
- Graduate school gave me a platform to figure myself out and work on my core practices
- For interview prep, take the time to build answers for questions you don't have an answer for yet. Don't over script your answers but have an idea in mind.
Candice Plendl is a 2018 graduate of the Environmental Science - Earth System Science program and is an Associate at EnviroIssues where she supports various multimodal transportation efforts. Plendl offered this salient wisdom:
- Connect with your peers, professors, faculty, and staff. Lean on them for support when needed. These lead to networking opportunities, mentorship, and even friendships.
- Utilize the resources offered to you (that your tuition pays for). Again, the Career Center is available for free up to three (3) years after graduating.
- Do your research and come prepared - but be authentic. Interviews are a two-way street. You are also interviewing the company/graduate program/client to see if they are a right fit for you. Ask questions.
- Negotiate your pay. Know your worth.
- Saying "yes" does not mean it is set in stone. You can always change your path.
IAS is grateful to Corpus and Plendl for sharing their stories and supporting students’ development. Learn about other alumni mentors who’ve connected with students between 2015-2020.