Learning the digital marketing ropes can help you build a brand — and get a job!

By Sara Kirkpatrick ’17, Advertising and Marketing major

When I graduate, I aspire to work in digital marketing. However, like many students, I didn’t always know what I wanted to do after college.

At Portland Community College, I excelled in business coursework but struggled with math. I transferred to PSU to study communications, but three terms before graduation I decided to say goodbye to my communication degree and apply for the SBA program (even if it does require an additional 2 1/2 years of coursework!).

I started my business coursework and became focused on digital marketing. I used resources like Google, Meetup and LinkedIn to network with others in the field and start learning skills. Since then, I have designed and launched a personal e-portfolio, attended community workshops and digital conferences, and have completed a digital marketing certificate through PSU. To practice my skills in the art of Instagram’s quirkiness, I created an account for my French bulldog, Diesel.

My enthusiasm and interest for digital marketing is driven by my passion to inspire others. As a newly hired SBA student blogger, I plan to use this platform to spread awareness of the importance and value of social media for students in today’s job market.


In future blog posts, I’ll share insight on how to build a professional online presence, including:

•   Why an online resume is more effective than a written one

•   How to leverage Pinterest for careers

•   How to become an expert in your major using Facebook groups

•   Why you should consider making LinkedIn your primary blog

•   A student’s guide to keeping it professional on Twitter

By the end of the year, I hope to arm readers with the digital skills needed to land your dream job right after college!

~Sara Kirkpatrick ’17, Fearless Senior

Did you know SBA has a Pinterest page where you can find hundreds of job search tips? Check it out and get started pinning your way to a job!

img_6388Sara Kirkpatrick is a senior majoring in Advertising and Marketing with a minor in Communications. She is working as a digital strategist for FIR, the student-run advertising agency. She also blogs for PSU Chronicles.

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Learn how to get scholarship money from PSU!

Shelbie Butler, ’18, Human Resource Management and Management and Leadership


scholarshipDid you know that the School of Business alone gives away $200,000 in scholarships each year? Portland State University offers many scholarships opportunities for all students. While applying for scholarships, here are a few very important things to remember:

– For the PSU scholarship application, you’ll need at least​ two letters of recommendation. Even though the application isn’t due until February 1st, you should start asking professors and mentors now! This will give them plenty of time to write a quality letter.

– Read all of the instructions very carefully and make sure that the application is filled out completely!

– Fill out the FAFSA! This year the form opened up on October 1st. This is your first step when seeking scholarships. The sooner you submit your FAFSA, the better!

To find out more about PSU scholarships, changes in the FAFSA process, and tips from professionals to help you find success in your quest for scholarships, come to my workshop: Scholarships! How to Find and Get Them! On Tuesday, November 1st from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm in SMSU 298. I’ll see you there!

Turning passions into a career

By Edwin Garcia ’17, Advertising and Marketing major

The Monday after Ranier Evans graduated from PSU’s SBA this past June, he started an e-commerce internship at Columbia Sportswear. His internship turned into a full-time job, and now he gets paid to tell the story of a brand deeply rooted in Pacific Northwest adventure — something he’s passionate about.

How did he do it? I sat down with him over some Rogue Hall tots and water (it’s too early in the term for midweek beers!) to find out.

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When Ranier started at PSU, he was a film major. He became a lifeguard at the Rec Center, a swim coach, logrolling instructor (yep, just like it sounds), served on the Rec Center advisory board, and enjoyed hiking the great Northwest.

Through his involvement around campus, he realized his passion wasn’t in the editing room — it was outdoors. He joined the School of Business Administration and signed up for an Athletic and Outdoor Industry class, taught by a Senior Global Manager at Columbia. Rainier also joined A&O Connect, a student group.

“Seeing all the hard work and passion in one group of like-minded students” let him know he was in the right place and kept him going in the program. Ranier said the support of other students and the opportunity to gain experience and develop connections was a critical part of landing such a great job right out of school.

He graduated in June with a degree in Marketing and certificates in Digital Marketing Strategies and the Athletic and Outdoor Industry. The certificates helped differentiate his resume.

He said his success doesn’t boil down to one or two things, but a major factor in helping him find his passion and become successful was his involvement on campus in activities and clubs. It helped him develop leadership skills, communication, and grow a network of both peers and professionals — while having fun.

“I did what I loved,” he said of his time at PSU. “Or at least I went in that direction!”

~Edwin Garcia ’17, Fearless Senior

If you want to get involved on campus, check out Student Activities and Leadership Programs or find a list of active SBA student groups to join.



Edwin Garcia is a senior majoring in Advertising and Marketing with an Athletics and Outdoor Industry certificate. He is co-president of A&O Connect and an Account Executive at FIR NW.