COM Alumni Spotlight

Jenna Curry

Matt Harris
Jenna (right) Receiving Wilma Magazine's Women to Watch Award
Photo by Wilma Magazine

Name:

Jenna Curry

Graduation Date: May 2008
Position Title:

1. Partner, Director of Marketing

2. Founder, Administrator

Company:

1. Little Wing Marketing

2. Port City Young Professionals

Current Location: Wilmington, NC

What was your favorite class in the COM Department? Why?
Advanced Public Relations with Jennifer Chin. This was my first experience working with a "real client" to be able to have "hands-on real world" experience. We were assigned to create a fully implementable public relations campaign for a local non-profit. We competed against other groups in our class and had to present our campaign in front of the non-profit. Our group's presentation won and I was able to gain a lot of experience, confidence, as well as some great artifacts for my portfolio. I also loved Storytelling in the Community with Carole Tallant.

What organizations/groups were you involved in while you were a student?
Communication Studies Society, Alpha Gamma Delta and Women's Golf Team

Did you complete a departmental internship? If so, please list your internship agency.
Public Relations & Events Intern at Cape Fear Community College Foundation. I had an amazing experience there.

How are you using the skills/concepts learned from your COM degree in your life?
I am able to apply the skills and concepts I learned as a COM major every day in how I run my business --bringing in new clients, project management, managing team members, and in developing and executing an effective marketing plan.

Frequent public speaking engagements, being able to clearly and effectively convey ideas and messages in meetings, presentations, and marketing campaigns, and the ability to work as part of a team on projects are valuable skills I learned that are a testament to my success so far as a business owner and recognized community member.

Research Methods with Dr. Olsen gave me a strong foundation in research, surveys, and analysis. A large part of what we do at Little Wing involves optimizing and evaluating "user experience" where the user is a current or prospective customer on your website. We utilize surveys and third party research to constantly test, measure, evaluate and iterate the effectiveness of our marketing strategies.

What are your proudest accomplishments since graduating from UNCW?
Winning "Wilma Magazine's Woman to Watch" Award in the Rising Star Category, 2014

Becoming a Coach, Speaker, and ​Trainer for UNCW's​ Quality Enhancement for Non Profit Organizations (QENO), 2014​
Founding the Port City Young Professionals networking group in 2009 and growing it to over 1,000 members, 2009-present
Starting an internet marketing business (Little Wing Marketing) 2012-present
Becoming the Communication Studies Alumni Chapter President 2012-present

Communication is. . .
a leadership skill. A way to grow that skill is to practice more ​two-way communication. By asking​ more questions and seeking​ feedback more often, you will have a deeper understanding of those you seek to influence and the tools you'll need to best influence them.

What advice would you give current COM majors?
Start your own blog about something you are interested in either personally or professionally. Use the blog to showcase your passion and understanding of the topic(s). When you learn something new, write about it--you haven't really learned something until you can teach it to someone else. A blog is a platform to position yourself as an "expert" and can also be used to get your foot in the door to meet and interview people in your desired field. A blog is digital proof of your interest and passion in a particular subject or field and instant credibility for your next employer or your first client.

Start networking and building relationships now. You don't have to wait until you graduate! You are always welcome to attend the Port City Young Professionals networking events.

Want to see more from Jenna? Check out her interview with Wilma Magazine here: Women to Watch Award in Rising Star

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