Graduation Spotlight: Jeannine Akamba

Saturday, May 18, 2024 - 1:30pm

Advertising and public relations class of 2024 graduate Jeannine Akamba had a number of transformational experiences during her four years at the CoJMC. From attending a national conference to making professional connections and gaining an internship opportunity, Akamba was so impacted by her time at Nebraska that she's staying another couple of years to further her education in international relations.

What does graduating from Nebraska mean to you?

Graduating from Nebraska means a tremendous amount to me. It represents years of hard work, dedication, and perseverance. It's not just about receiving a diploma; it's about the experiences I've had, the knowledge I've gained, and the relationships I've built along the way. Nebraska has been my home away from home, and graduating from here fills me with a sense of pride and accomplishment. It's a milestone that marks the beginning of a new chapter in my life, and I'm excited to see where my Nebraska education takes me.

As you think about graduating from Nebraska, please share any transformational moments that helped to shape who you are or what you will do going forward:

Attending the IRE/NICAR conference in 2023, thanks to the generous support of CoJMC donors, was a game-changer for me. The networking opportunities there were phenomenal—I connected with professionals and fellow students from all walks of life. These connections not only broadened my professional network but also provided me with invaluable mentorship and collaboration opportunities that enhanced my learning experience in CoJMC classes. Engaging with practitioners in the field gave me a firsthand look at industry best practices and kept me up-to-date with the latest developments in journalism and media.

Meeting Jane Olson was a pivotal moment for me. She's not just a professional contact; she has become a mentor figure, guiding me through the twists and turns of my career journey. Our one-on-one meeting was an incredible opportunity to glean wisdom from someone with vast experience in the field of Human Rights and Humanitarian. Jane's insights and advice have been invaluable, offering me perspectives that I wouldn't have gained elsewhere.

From sharing her own experiences to providing practical tips for success, Jane has been a constant source of inspiration and support. Her mentorship continues to help me navigate challenges and seize opportunities with confidence. Through her guidance, I've gained a deeper understanding of the industry and developed the skills needed to thrive in it.

But more than just professional advice, Jane has also been a source of encouragement and motivation. Her belief in my abilities has fueled my determination to push boundaries and strive for excellence. I'm incredibly grateful for Jane's mentorship and the impact she has had on my journey. With her by my side, I feel empowered to pursue my goals and make a meaningful impact in the world of Human Rights.

My year-long internship at the Nebraska Tourism Commission was a highlight of my college experience. It was a hands-on opportunity to apply what I learned in the classroom to real-world marketing and communication projects. Working at Though challenging, was incredibly rewarding. It pushed me out of my comfort zone and helped me develop invaluable skills in advertising and tourism marketing.

What were you involved in at CoJMC and UNL?

Member of African People Union (APU)

What are your plans for after graduation?

After graduation, I plan to stay here in Lincoln, Nebraska, seeking hands-on professional opportunities through internships or jobs while continuing my education. My immediate goal is to gain valuable experience in the field, whether through internships or entry-level positions, that will complement my academic background in journalism and mass communications.

In addition to gaining practical experience, I'm also preparing to pursue further education. In the spring of 2025, I intend to enroll in graduate school Political Science at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, specializing in International relations, with a focus on Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs. This program aligns with my passion for advocating for social justice and global issues, and I'm eager to delve deeper into this field of study.

By balancing hands-on professional experience with continued education, I aim to build a strong foundation for a successful career in the intersection of public relations, political science, and advocacy. Staying in Lincoln allows me to leverage the resources and opportunities available at the university while contributing to the local community.

After graduation, what are you most looking forward to?

After graduation, I am most looking forward to embarking on a journey of personal and professional growth, seizing new opportunities, and making a meaningful impact in the world.

Who helped you throughout your time as a Husker that you'd like to thank?

I would like to express my sincerest thanks to my godfather, Alain Bourguignon, in Metz, France.Your unwavering support has been a guiding light for me throughout my time as a Husker. Thank you for being the support system; you have always been that voice saying I can do it, even when I questioned myself.  You have also been the voice of caution, saying don't do it, when necessary. Despite the distance, you have always been there to offer encouragement, provide moral and mental strength, and lend a listening ear whenever I needed someone to share my experiences with. Your belief in me, even when I doubted myself, has been a constant source of motivation. Thank you for always helping me strive for EXCELLENCE!!!

Alain, you have been the voice of reason, the voice of encouragement, and the pillar of support that has helped me overcome obstacles and rise to challenges. I owe much of my success to your guidance and unwavering belief in my abilities. My gratitude for your support knows no bounds, and I can never thank you enough for everything you have done for me. You have been a pivotal figure in my journey, and I am forever grateful for your presence in my life.

Additionally, I would like to extend my sincerest thanks to CoJMC Jill Martin. Dear Jill Martin, I wanted to take a moment to express my heartfelt gratitude for your instrumental role in connecting me with Jane Olson. Your kindness and support have truly made a difference in my journey as a Husker. Without your help, the invaluable meeting with Jane would not have been possible. I am deeply grateful for your efforts and for being the bridge that facilitated this meaningful connection.

What is the best thing about being a Husker?

The best thing about being a Husker is the sense of community and pride that comes with being part of something bigger than yourself.

Advertising and public relations major Jeannine Akamba from Yaounde, Cameroon
Advertising and public relations major Jeannine Akamba from Yaounde, Cameroon