Maggie Whittemore ’17
How did you find yourself where you are now? What led you to your current profession?
I really like traveling and trying out new places. I knew I wanted to live somewhere warmer than New England but I still wanted to have seasons. So I settled with North Carolina and gave Raleigh a try! My profession is actually a funny story; my boss found my profile on Indeed (always keep your LinkedIn and Indeed profiles up-to-date!) and asked me to apply and interview for the job. After reading the description of the position I currently have now, I knew I would love it and luckily enough I got the job. It’s been an amazing experience and I’ve gotten to do so much with the organization I work for.
What is your favorite thing about your current profession?
It’s a tie between the people I work with and all of the traveling I get to do. I work in a small office (four of us including me), so I’ve been able to grow close with my coworkers and they’ve become a second family to me, which is really helpful when you live 900 miles from your home and real family. I also love that I get to travel not only all over the state of North Carolina, but to many other states in our region and across the country. Getting to see new places and meet new people is a huge perk of my job.
Was there a person, faculty or staff member that has a particular influence on you during your time at St. Mike’s?
The ladies on the second floor of the Admissions Office! I worked in the admission office all four years I was at St. Mike’s for my work study job, and these women taught me everything about being an adult. From how to fill out a direct deposit form to putting salt on my apples to make them taste better, I learned so much and was so cared for by Shirley, Carol, Kathy, Kari, and Sue! Thank you all for making me feel so at home and making work-study fun.
How does what you learned at St. Mike’s apply to your post-graduate life and what you are doing now?
Every class I took in my major has played a part in my job. I use my Adobe program skills daily to edit photos and create social media postings, my graphic design lessons help me create images for promotions, I use my writing courses when I have to create a PR piece for one of our award winners, and the list goes on and on. There isn’t a day that goes by where I am not using a skill that one of the Media studies, Journalism and Digital Arts professors at St. Mike’s taught me.
Is there anything you learned during your St. Mike’s experience, in an academic setting or otherwise, that had a particular impact or influence on you?
Every action has an impact, whether it be positive or negative. As a tour guide, it was my job to be the voice of St. Mike’s for prospective students. Getting to see the prospective turn into the enrolled year after year was so exciting. Knowing that I was making a difference and impacting these fellow Knights in such a positive way that they wanted to share my love of St. Mike’s was the best part of my job. Always try to make a positive impact.
Do you have any advice for current students?
Make mistakes, and don’t put yourself down for one bad grade or wrong answer. Life is all about making mistakes and learning from them. College is the best place to do that, and to learn as much as you can using all of the resources you have at your fingertips (take advantage of everything you have offered to you! That includes Career Services, the Library, the free gym, and more). Make a mistake, learn from it, and use that knowledge to further yourself as a person.
Also, try new things. This is the only chance you really have in life to try anything new that you’d like to try. St. Mike’s has so many different clubs and activities (all for free) that you can explore, and maybe find something new you love! I had never played Water Polo before coming to St. Mike’s, but fell in love with it my freshman year and cherish so many memories from it. Push yourself out of your comfort zone and you’ll find something you love.
What was your favorite thing about St. Mike’s?
It’s so hard to narrow it down to one thing, but I’d have to say the people. St. Mike’s is such a tight-knit and close community, and that really made a difference in my four years there. From students to staff and faculty, everyone supports each other and cares about each other. I don’t know anybody else who can say that about their college.
What was it like adjusting to the ‘real world’ after graduating?
I’m still adjusting! “Adulting” doesn’t just happen overnight. When I graduated, I had no idea what I wanted to do or who I wanted to be, and that’s OKAY! You don’t have to have everything figured out to manage the real world. Most people you meet who have been tackling the “real world” for years still don’t have it all figured out. I think the best way to adjust to the real world is to be honest with who you are, do the things you like to do, and always take time for yourself. If you can check those boxes off each day, adjusting to being on your own and being an adult is just a bit easier.