On October 3, University of Miami Media Management alumna Marissa Condello visited the campus to speak to Media Management Association members about her professional journey from the classroom to Walt Disney, where she works as a senior pricing analyst. Because she took many of the same classes that media management students in the audience did or will take, the discussion was engaging and highly relevant for the students.

Throughout her talk, Condello highlighted the importance of finding your passion. As a student at UM, Condello began her academic career on the pre-med track with a focus on chemistry. She quickly decided that this area was not her passion, and chose to follow her love for theater and pursue a Media Management major in the School of Communication.

For Condello, studying at UM meant more than just showing up for class. She encouraged students to find and seize any and all opportunities for leadership on campus. She herself did so through the President’s 100 program, as well as in the Panhellenic community, during her time in Miami. In stressing the importance of expanding leadership capabilities, Condello reminded students that  “We’re all leaders every day: in class, with friends, in organizations, all the time.”

Condello had plenty to share with students about her first internship experience at NBCUniversal during the summer preceding her senior year. Though the process was long, she was eventually accepted into the business development internship program in New York City. In her time at NBCUniversal, Condello garnered invaluable learning experience that she attributes to her preparedness by the Media Management program at UM. Her hands-on internship tasks were “totally relatable to media management. [She] was able to apply what we learned in class into [her] internship every day.” Condello also noted that the relationships students create at any company can become the most valuable addition to their professional future.

As part of her previous responsibilities at Disney, Condello screened out many internship applications and résumés. She fielded many questions from the audience about the internship application process and offered tips to make a résumé stand out against the competition. Condello reassured students that the most valuable experience they can highlight in their résumés is leadership. She recommended turning group projects or community service time into leadership experiences.

Having completed a Master of Business Administration program at Stetson University with a focus on leadership, Condello ended her presentation by emphasizing the importance of leadership in the workplace. She urged the audience to reflect on such questions as “What type of leader do I want to be?”, How can I connect with people?”, and How can I talk to people so that we know we are partners?”