Murrow senior, student leader looks to future in California

JOEL KEMEGUE, Evergreen mint editor

In her time at WSU, Ariana Andrade has served as president of the Association of Women in Communications, worked as Murrow Ambassador for two years straight, and has worked to improve the Murrow College and WSU community.

Andrade transferred to WSU two years ago from Cypress College in Cypress, California and said she convinced her parents to visit WSU on their anniversary weekend. After talking with Murrow ambassadors and seeing all the involvement and study abroad opportunities, she was convinced. Andrade said she fell in love with Murrow before she fell in love with WSU.

“I transferred over and that’s when I picked my major and knew what I wanted to major in [public relations] because the way they explained it I was like ‘that’s what I want to do,’” Andrade said. “They finally put what I wanted to do into words.”

Andrade chose communication, she said, because she knew she liked to talk to people and help people, and WSU’s communication degree offered more options like public relations and advertising, rather than the broad definition of communication she was used to.

“Being back from California, when people talk about a communication degree it’s just the general degree,” Andrade said. “My knowledge of what was available and what you could do with it was a little minimal.”

Andrade said it was a little intimidating coming out of state in her junior year, so to offset the fear she got involved in as much as she could.

“I told myself ‘I want to make sure I take advantage of the experience I have here,’” Andrade said. “I was really just trying to be as actively involved as I could, just to make sure I wasn’t missing out on anything.”

That ended up getting her an Orientation Counselor position, an advertisement representative sale position at The Daily Evergreen, a Murrow College Ambassador position and vice president of the Association of Women in Communications during her junior year.

By her senior year, Andrade was maintaining her ambassador position, became president of AWC and was interning in the Carson College of Business.

She said she joined AWC after finding them at a Murrow Involvement Fair.

Roberta Kelly, a Clinical Professor of communication, first met Andrade in COM 300 and got to work with her more in-depth while advising for AWC. She said Andrade would stop by her office every week to discuss AWC and Andrade was active and organized.

“She brought a lot of practical experience, leadership experience to the position and she had been very active in the group,” Kelly said. “We thought that she would be the best fit for [president], and she was.”

Junior public relations major Katie Duncan first met Andrade at an AWC meeting. She said Andrade was welcoming and took the time to get to know her. Andrade eventually invited her to join the board, Duncan said, where she got the chance to work with her as a Murrow Ambassador.

Duncan said Andrade has been a mentor and friend, and has taught her how to lead and work in a team.

“She is such a team player and is willing to hear ideas and talk about ideas,” Duncan said. “She really just pushes everyone to be better and she’s made me better as well.”

Andrade said once she graduates she’ll move back to California, and hopes to work either for a public relations agency or a nonprofit. She said she wants to stay in public relations but also wants to gain experience and make connections instead of jumping in and immediately making a career.

For current students, Andrade said find what you love doing, and take advantage of as much as you can.

“One of the greatest things I’ve found during my time here is being able to share that experience and make connections and hopefully that impacted someone along the way.” Andrade said. “What you do for someone may impact them in the long run, and if I was able to do that for someone during their experience … I’m glad I was able to be a part of that.”