Name: Jessica Cookson
Hometown: Brockton, MA
Graduation Year: 2009
Her Campus Bentley (HCB): What did you major in here at Bentley?
Jessica Cookson (JC): I was a double major in Marketing and Media Arts & Society and I also minored in Finance.
HCB: What was your favorite internship during your undergraduate career?
JC: I worked for a majority of my college career at Citizens Bank as a banker. But my favorite internship was at In Touch Weekly in New York City! I spent the summer going into my senior year in NYC in one of the most well-known areas to any fashionista, Bryant Park. In Touch and Life & Style Weekly were owned by the same parent company so I actually had an opportunity to split my weeks and work for both! If you have ever interned or worked in NY, you can imagine that my life was similar to 'Devil Wears Prada.' But I also had the opportunity to get a taste of what the advertising world was like and even designed an ad of my own that was published. I always pictured myself living in NYC but now that I look back, I saw first-hand what it was like to interact with clients on a daily basis which is exactly what I am doing now. I learned a lot about myself living on my own at the age of 21 in a big city I barely knew. Being an unpaid intern was challenging but the experiences are priceless and I have In Touch and Life & Style Weekly to thank for much of my success.
HCB: Describe yourself in three words.
JC: Persistent, charismatic, dedicated
HCB: If you had a pick a favorite moment out of your 4 years here, what would it be?
JC: I loved every single moment that I spent at Bentley and it's hard to pinpoint a certain one. My entire senior year was amazing - from road trips on the long weekends with friends to the class trip to the Bahamas... I am incredibly blessed to have spent 4 years at Bentley. I wish I could've stayed 8.
HCB: What do you miss most about Bentley?
JC: My friends! Although we stay in touch, seeing them is not as easy as it used to be and I can no longer walk across the Green Space to hang! And although post-graduation is incredible and rewarding, those 4 years fly by way too fast and the real world is certainly not college.
HCB: What have you been doing since graduation?
JC: I spent some time trying to decide where I wanted to be and in what industry. I found my match about 18 months ago and I am currently a National Account Manager for IST Management Services. I love going to work every day and have an amazingly dedicated, loyal, and supportive team that I work with daily. Sales is the most rewarding career and I find myself to be truly fortunate.
HCB: What are some of your interests when you aren’t being a super sales woman?
JC: I spend a great amount of time volunteering whenever possible. I am actively involved in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and have been for years. Giving to those in need and paying it forward is so important to me.
HCB: Do you have any fun plans for the holiday season?
JC: On a professional front, the holidays are a fun time to spoil all of my clients! On a personal front, family is the most important thing during the holiday season. This year, I have a brother who believes in Santa, a sister who will be home from college, a sister & my new brother-in-law, a superhero-like mom, and an amazing boyfriend to share the season with. It's going to be nothing short of fun and I am one lucky gal.
HCB: If you could give underclassman some advice about balancing school, work and a social life, what would you tell them?
JC: Balance is a MUST here. College is over in a blink of an eye so make some time for your friends and enjoy the college experience. Don't fall behind in classes and create a schedule for yourself to manage your time in the best way possible. I also worked throughout my career at Bentley and I think students should have that experience prior to graduation. But don't overcommit and lose sight of what you're there for -- your education. At the end of the day, you will walk away with a degree, experiences, friends, & memories and all of those are life changing.