Rachel Auerbach graduated in May 2018 with a journalism/strategic communications degree with a minor in Italian. She grew up in Calabasas, California, and went to high school with the Kardashians. She made her way across the country to KU and the J-School after encouragement from family and friends. She is now marketing coordinator for ZipfWorks in Santa Monica, California.
My dad told me to apply and I said, “No. I'm not going to go to Kansas. I'm from California. I'm not moving to the Midwest.” My parents didn’t go to KU, but we ended up coming to tour it, and I loved Lawrence. I loved how homey it felt. It just felt like home even though I didn't really know anything about it.
Coming here it was definitely a lot different.
I figured that if I went to college knowing people, then I wouldn't probably do as well because I just stick to playing it safe. But going somewhere where I didn't know anybody and by doing all these new experiences opened up the doors to really make a new life and home here.
Honestly, adjusting was not that hard except for the first day when I got on the bus on the wrong side of the street and ended up at Target instead of GSP.
I studied in Florence, Italy, last spring and it was so much fun. I always tell people that they should try to do study abroad even if it's just for winter break or a couple of weeks over summer break. It's having that experience in a different country and learning in a different country I think, too, because you are able to learn the way that other countries think.
Go to class.
Also, raise your hand because then the professors will remember you, and they'll be more likely to help you if you need it.
Taking a class with Dr. Yvonnes Chen gave me so many different pieces of life advice. She is a big believer in giving everything your all. Before I took that class, I thought I was a good student. I thought I worked hard, but then she saw what I was doing and knew I could push myself harder and because she knew it, it made me want to achieve that to make her proud of the work that I did.
Believe in yourself, because especially growing up, you don't necessarily know all the different things you can achieve, so believe that you can do more than you think that you can and you probably can achieve that.
Mara Kubicki graduated in May 2018 with degrees in strategic communication and news and information, with a minor in business. She plans on living in Kansas City and hopes to pursue a career in public relations.