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University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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What I learned during my time as a student ambassador

Arianna


by Arianna

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When I first started this job, I wasn’t sure I’d be able to handle all of the responsibilities that came with it. During the school year, there are typically 7 student ambassadors working at the same time. However, in the summer there is only one. I felt apprehensive going into this job but after a few weeks of work, I was pleasantly surprised with how comfortable I was in this position. For my last blog as the summer student ambassador, I thought I’d let any prospective student ambassadors know how this job helped me with my personal growth and what the position entails!

Information Sessions
One of the first tasks I had was hosting an information session for the Entry-Level OTD program with Dr. Anvarizadeh. I ended up doing 6 info sessions throughout the summer! At these info sessions, I presented a few slides and answered questions in the chat. Speaking about a program that doesn’t exist was a little intimidating, but Dr. Anvarizadeh, Dr, Nxumalo, and Dr. Bennett set great examples and their positive feedback helped me overcome any lingering feelings of imposter syndrome!

These information sessions helped me develop my public speaking skills and after a few info sessions, I noticed that I sounded more natural. Being completely honest, I did have notes that I referred to as I spoke, but doing info sessions taught me how to sound like I wasn’t reading a script. Eventually, I was able to host a BS-OTD info session by myself and I didn’t have to use any notes! To be fair, the BS-OTD program is extremely similar to the BS-MA program so most of the information was easy for me to explain.

Social Media
If you weren’t aware, I have been managing the social media accounts for the past 13 weeks. I enjoyed this responsibility because it allowed me to express my creative side! I also want to say a quick thank you to all the students who sent me pictures to post on our accounts. From your arts and crafts to Neuro PJ Day, the photos you’ve shared added so much vibrancy to our accounts! Managing social media accounts involves deciding what to post and when, designing the graphics for each post, and reposting all the wonderful posts we’re tagged in!

Handling the social media accounts taught me how to analyze trends! I noticed that our most popular posts celebrate the joys and accomplishments of the USC Chan Family. I hope that we continue to share these events with you all and I’m sure there will be an abundance of occasions to post about in the upcoming school year!

Meeting with prospective students
Out of all the different responsibilities I had, this one was my favorite. Meeting with prospective students involves setting up a one-to-one Zoom meeting and answering any questions one may have.

This aspect of my job was my favorite because I got to be an advocate for our program and I was able to share my experiences with potential future Trojans. I think this was the one task that I didn’t learn a whole lot from, which is not a bad thing! The meetings I had with prospective students flowed so naturally. I didn’t get nervous when I talked to them, and there was never any awkward silence because I can talk about Chan for hours and hours!

Admissions Projects
Working on projects for the admissions team was probably the area I was most inexperienced in. These projects involved collecting and organizing data so that our admissions team could use it in the future.

The most obvious skill I gained from working on admissions projects was how to use spreadsheets. I had almost no experience with spreadsheets when I started my job as a student ambassador. However, after 13 weeks of admissions projects, I’ve learned many tricks that I hope to use in the future!

Blogging
Last but not least, blogging was part of my job as a summer student ambassador. The student ambassadors have full control over what they write about, which makes it more of a therapeutic activity instead of work. We can give advice to students, talk about our favorite occupations, and even document a vacation (which I did)!

Blogging taught me how to write in different styles. The first blog I wrote was written with a slightly formal tone. However, I quickly realized that blogs are supposed to be fun to read! The audience does not want to feel like they are reading out of a textbook. Therefore, I let down all my walls and started writing with a more personal voice. Doing this made the writing process so much easier. I just let the words flow straight from my mind to the computer without worrying about how professional I sounded.

Well I guess this is the end of my blogging series! I enjoyed testing out my writing skills over these past 13 weeks and I hope some of the advice I wrote was helpful to many! Thank you all for reading and if there are any prospective student ambassadors reading this, I hope you learned a little more about the position!

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