Dana Jennings is finishing up her senior year at Texas Tech University. Originally
a biology major, Jennings has found a home in the College of Media & Communication
where she is studying public relations.
“Ever since I was a child, I was always focused on communication,” said Jennings,
whose hometown is Arlington, Texas. “Whenever I had a conversation with someone, I
wanted to understand their point of view and I wanted them to know mine.”
Jennings joined Outpost social media lab last fall after taking a content development
class from Professor Lisa Low. It was Low who suggested to Jennings that she might
be great addition to the organization.
“Social media has become the new way to do business. However, it changes one day to
the next,” Jennings said. “Being in Outpost gives you the tools and experience you
need to anticipate changes in the professional environment. Having this knowledge
gives your company the professional edge, allowing them to advance faster than any
During her time at Outpost, Jennings helped refresh the lab.
“I got the opportunity to rebrand and revitalize the Outpost with my own creative
control,” she said.
In addition to working at Outpost, Jennings previously worked as an intern with Primitive
Social, a local inbound marketing agency. Jennings says that during her brief internship
she has learned a lot about how a marketing agency functions.
Her advice to any student is to always ask questions and don’t be afraid to speak
up, but to also listen.
“Every person to enter a room knows something you don’t,” she said. “Find out what
you can learn from everyone, and find the value in their knowledge. What all CoMC
professors will tell you is that there is always something to learn.”
As she prepares to move on to the next phase of her life and career, Jennings said
she is grateful for her time in CoMC and the support she has received in her journey.
“No one here is going to let you fail as long as you are trying. Someone is always
around to pick you back up. Everyone in the CoMC genuinely cares about your wellbeing
and success academically and emotionally as well,” Jennings said.
Low said she believes Jennings will be a great addition to a communication team based
on her efforts at Outpost and her great work ethic. She also notes that Jennings is
an excellent critical thinker.
“Dana is the type of student that always had something to say. That is every professor’s
dream: to ask a question and have your students give insightful answers. She didn’t
hesitate to speak her mind and express her different point of views in a positive
manner making her a natural at PR,” Low said.
A Texas Tech alumnus, Dr. Justin Keene finished his degree in electronic media and
communication in 2007 and completed his master’s in 2009. After leaving to earn his
Ph.D. from the University of Indiana in 2014, Keene returned to the College of Media
& Communication at Texas Tech to make an impact through teaching. Keene currently
teaches Principles of Photography, Introduction to Web Design and Multimedia Development.
Keene wanted to be in Lubbock and was excited to come back.
“From here, I knew what to expect. I knew what I was getting with the culture, the
students and the town,” he said.
Keene said he was inspired as an undergrad student. One of his professors, Dr. Ed
Youngblood, spoke with him after class one day. After noticing that Keene asked a
lot of why questions, Youngblood asked Keene if he had ever considered graduate school.
“That interaction with Ed completely changed my life,” Keene said. As he moved on
to graduate school, Keene knew he had found his niche. “This is perfect; this is what
I want to do,” he thought.
Over the years he has seen the CoMC grow.
“What’s different about our college than other communication programs I’ve been a
part of is that we genuinely care about our students. When they win, we win, and when
they lose, we lose,” said Keene.
The advice Keene has for any student is to participate and be present. He said, “go
to class, go to class, go to class! You are setting yourself up for a life of success.”
“The HUB is an online student publication. The best part about being online is that
you are really able to tell a story how you think it should be told without being
limited. We do a little bit of everything here from investigative in-depth news stories,
to the more lighthearted BuzzFeed type,” said Sarah Self-Walbrick, the HUB’s Graduate
Executive Director from Lubbock, Texas.
The HUB@TTU is a student run organization that allows students to publish their work both off
and on the clock. “In October of 2012, the HUB was founded to serve as an outlet for
journalism students…to get their class work published,” said Self-Walbrick.
With eight paid positions and numerous volunteer opportunities, the HUB has become
a great collaborative outlet for students of any major within the College of Media
& Communication. Self-Walbrick said “[In] the higher-up journalism classes, we work
with directly to make sure their content gets seen somewhere. The whole point of journalism
is to get published so we are here for the students to get published, that’s always
been our goal.”
The HUB’s paid positions include writing intensive positions for the various columns
as well as photography and video positions. Getting involved at the HUB is as simple
as introducing yourself. Their early volunteers will start in shadowing positions
to get a feel for what goes on in the HUB and to find what interests them.
“I always encourage incoming students to get involved as soon as possible to make
friends and start building those connections early on,” said Self-Walbrick.
How did you become an ambassador for the college of Media & Communication? I applied last May after seeing all of the great work ambassadors complete around
the college. Helping represent the college seemed like a privilege, so I made sure
What do you like best about the College of Media & Communication? I love that I can apply myself in multiple programs with ease. Advertising is my
focus, but I can try on public relations courses or electronic media skills if I would
like to grow.
What has your experience been like as an ambassador? My experience has been so rewarding! I love talking to prospective students, parents,
and donors to share my experience in the CoMC. The position comes with responsibility,
but it is terrific.
What are your future career goals? In the future I would love to work for an international advertising agency or a global
brand. The challenge of adapting to cultures around the world intrigues me. Also,
a career that lets me travel would be ideal.
What is your advice for prospective students? Try out everything! If you think you may be interested in something, go to that meeting,
get to that event, or reach out to someone. I would not have discovered advertising
if I hadn’t explored. Who knows what you could find?