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Campus Celebrity: Marissa Ericson

This week I was fortunate enough to see my dear friend, and role-model, Marissa Ericson, a former Her Campus columnist, and Emerson RA. I was able to get a quick interview with her to find out where she is now, what life after Emerson is like, and to see if she had any advice for some fellow Emerson colliegettes. So if you’re a senior looking forward to the real world, or a freshman wondering where to start you’ll definitely want to here what this inspiring woman has been up to.

Here’s what she said:

What was your major at Emerson?
“Writing, Literature, Publishing / Minor in Photography”

What was your overall experience at Emerson?
“Emerson was my dream school! I transferred in as a junior, and immediately tried to get as overly involved as possible. As a transfer student who is living off-campus, it can be hard to feel as though you are apart of the school’s community. So I found it imperative to attend as many extracurriculars and events as I could, which definitely meant reaching out of my comfort zone! While this lead to very long days and little sleep, I am so glad I put myself out there and tried everything that I did. Not only did I make some amazing friendships, but I tried new things and clubs I probably wouldn’t have otherwise tried–like playing Quidditch or writing for Her Campus!”

What was your favorite thing you were involved in on campus?
“My senior year I was offered the opportunity to be one of two RAs for the STAR (Students Taking Active Roles) Floor. It was a floor that only Freshmen residents could apply to live on. I truly LOVED my role. I gained some amazing relationships and learned so much about life, responsibility, college, wisdom, and the benefits of a strong community.”

What was your favorite thing you wrote for Her Campus Emerson?
“I was given the opportunity to write a bimonthly fitness & nutrition column for Her Campus Emerson. Nutrition and fitness had become a very big part of my life during the preceding year, so it was wonderful to share what I had learned, plus research new tips and facts. College years are a filled with self-growth and experience, so if you’re able to incorporate fitness & nutrition into the mix of what you’re learning, I think it can be beneficial for your overall happiness and balance in life!”

What are you up to now?
“I’m living my NYC dream! I always knew NYC was where I wanted to be, so to be here doing it and living it has been an incredible growing and motivating experience. Professionally, I work as an associate rep at Glasshouse Assignment, an agency that represents a roster of seven photographers. In my position, I help promote our photographers’ work, and work with magazines, advertising agencies, and clients to help produce photo shoots. It’s been a great experience, and I love continually learning about the exciting photography industry!

In addition to my position at Glasshouse, I love the variety of other opportunities that NYC has offered for me. I now bike to work daily!; I love hosting dinner parties for new & old friends (and trying new creative recipes!–like Roasted Grapes and Brussel Sprouts with Whole Wheat Pasta in White Wine Sauce, inspired by this recipe on Pinterest); I love running the Brooklyn Bridge with the running organization Back On My Feet; I go to literary readings; I have found a great church community at Hillsong NYC; and I love just walking the city. It certainly wasn’t an easy transition, but it has been an amazing experience!“

How is life after Emerson so far?
“Life has been a whirlwind since graduation! I got to visit Boston last weekend for the first time since leaving, and thinking of all that has happened since May was almost overwhelming, haha. It was great to go back to visit though, and it made me realize how much of my Emerson experience made me the independent person I am today.”

Any advice for fellow colleigettes at Emerson?
“First of all, embrace the moments at Emerson! Learn all that you can each day, and remind yourself that this college education is an incredible opportunity. (Which will hopefully provide you with the driving motivation to succeed!)

I also suggest starting to network now. Contact professionals in different industries that you’re interested in. And not just any professional, but professionals that have done things that are inspiring to you! Email them and tell them that their career endeavors are inspiring to you, and ask them if they have some time to speak to you about their career path and experiences. The thing is, everyone loves to share their story, and everyone wants to be honored by the work that they’ve done. In my experience, about 1 out of every 5 people I’ve contacted will respond. To me, this is a pretty good percentage! And know that if they don’t respond, its more than likely that they’re really busy—so don’t take it personally. And if they don’t respond, at least you know you tried. What these informational interviews will do for you is: a) offer insight into different careers, giving you an idea of whether it’s something you would love to do long-term; b) give you a contact in the industry; c) help you to figure out what skills/experience would be most beneficial to learn now that will prepare you for that career. And Emerson has a great alumni network, so that might be a great place to start your search for contacts!”

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