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Life After Cal Lutheran University – Dublin High School’s Rebecca Bomfim on Entering the “Real World”

August 1, 2017

bomfim 2DUBLIN, CA–We’ve spoken with Dublin High School Class of 2012 and California Lutheran University Class of 2016 graduate Rebecca Bomfim twice during her college journey, the first time after she completed her first year at Cal Lutheran and again after she studied abroad in Florence, Italy. These Life in College profiles go full circle now with a Life After College profile with Rebecca now a college graduate and officially in the “real world”, with a full-time marketing job at an electronics manufacturer in Southern California. What did it feel like to walk across the stage to get your diploma, if it’s even possible to remember since it happens so fast.

Rebecca Bomfim: “It’s hard because I feel like I blacked out in the moment! It’s an amazing experience because all the hard work you’ve done is wrapped into a ten second walk across the stage.” For students trying to figure out what subject to major in, break down what it means to major in communications.

Bomfim: “Communications is a broad major that can take you into many different careers including marketing, advertising, PR, events, journalism and other fields. If you have an interest in any of those careers a communications major might be right for you. I knew I was interested in communications while attending Dublin High School, where I really enjoyed my English classes and planning events through student government. The communications classes I took in college were my favorite classes.”; What skills did you acquire in your upper year classes that were most impactful?

Bomfim: “It helps as a communications major to choose an emphasis, which for me was PR and advertising. Classes that stood out were focused on public speaking, how to pitch a concept, and how to write a press release; skills that set you up for a career.” What role did internships play in your college experience?

Bomfim: “Internships played a huge role. Having multiple internships helped me figure out what I liked and didn’t like, what I was good at and where I needed to improve. Going into communications I didn’t think I’d be interested in marketing, but after my first internship I learned what marketing really was and loved it, and decided to pursue marketing as a career. Communications is a broad discipline so internships are invaluable to learning what career track you should take.” What was your strategy for lining up internships ever summer?

Bomfim: “Cal Lutheran has a Career Services Center that lists at least forty different jobs and internships every single day. I actually worked at the Career Services Center while at Cal Lutheran. Cal Lutheran posts relevant listing from multiple sites, and local companies will post directly. Career Services gives students an edge to see a job posting before anyone else.

“Being prepared early is important. I was researching internship opportunities before the semester even started. My goal was to get internships in different industries, small companies and big companies, and a mixture of marketing, events and social media. I thought about building my resume and learning what I excelled in.” What were your strategies for staying on track and graduating on time?

Bomfim: “Planning, planning, planning! Starting in freshman year I had a mentor who gave me lots of advice on what classes to take and when I should take them. From the first semester of my freshman year I planned out all four years. I also looked at how to spread out my harder classes so that they wouldn’t land all at once. Planning also helped me work in electives and a semester to study abroad.” Looking back at Cal Lutheran, what is your sales pitch as a proud graduate?

Bomfim: “Cal Lutheran has so much to offer. I fell in love with the campus and atmosphere during the initial tour. It’s a small campus which gives you the opportunity to enjoy small class sizes and to get to know other students and professors. Professors know your name and they’ll go to lunch with you. The people really do make the school. And you can’t beat Southern California as a location!” What advice do you have for students to get the most out of their upper year classes?

Bomfim: “Remember that you – or more likely your parents – are paying for your college experience. I always kept that in the back of my mind. I was going to go to my classes, pay attention, and learn because I’m paying for this and it will be beneficial for me and my career. You have to be committed. Your GPA, especially in your last two years of college, can play a big role in where you work.

“I loved the communications classes in my junior and senior years which really helped me stay focused. A marketing course I took in my senior year stood out – we had guest speakers, we created our own company and marketing plan – I was able to see the creative side of marketing.” What advice do you have for high school students who are struggling to understand the point of the classes they are taking?

Bomfim: “Everything that you learn in high school is going to help prepare you for college. Take advantage of Dublin High School classes and teachers because those teachers are there for you. Get excited for college – it’s an amazing opportunity and an experience that’s like no other. The four years of college are going to fly by.”

bomfim When the ‘real world’ started to approach what went through your mind?

Bomfim: “It was scary and intimidating because there is no structure in the real world. In college you have classes and a well-defined schedule. You have a plan. In the real world you figure out your plan as you go which is scary. My advice is to not put too much pressure on yourself, you don’t need to have everything figured out when you graduate.” If you could go back in time to your senior year of high school, what advice would you give to yourself?

Bomfim: “Embrace all the little moments, the senior events, your friends and your teachers. I remember in my freshman year when I was lonely and felt lost in a new place all by myself I would call my high school friends and feel a lot better. College is going to be an amazing experience, but high school can be amazing too!”

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