Name: Aida Zepeda-Torres
Degree: Strategic Communications
Year of graduation: 2013
Company: SquareTrade

Aida Zepeda-Torres never thought she would be leading a communications program at a multinational company after graduation.

 Aida spent her first three years at Oklahoma State University as a microbiology major. She made the big switch when she realized she loved to write and research. Strategic communications was the major that created more intriguing opportunities for her.

After graduating, Aida decided leave Oklahoma and head to California where she was hired at a technology protection plan company. As the Public Relations Manager at SquareTrade, she has had the opportunity to manage major media campaigns across the United States and Europe. Aida enjoys taking something people aren’t interested in and finding an angle that makes people want to learn more.

“I’m really proud of how much I’ve been able to grow and learn since graduation,” Aida said. “I seized the right opportunities at the right time.”

Earning a degree from the School of Media & Strategic Communications has benefited Aida in her career. The hands-on curriculum set her up for success as she learned how to advance herself in her writing, research techniques and professionalism.

“What I learned at SMSC was very high level,” Aida said. “The degree sets a really good basis and foundation of understanding what’s expected across the board.”

Aida looks back at her time spent in SMSC and thinks about her favorite memories in the Paul Miller Building. She enjoyed using the broadcast studio for her classes. By using the studio, she was able to learn about other degree paths SMSC has to offer.

Aida advises students to explore unfamiliar subjects. She said she believes it’s important to have passion for an area of study. Aida also urges students to read the news, research, network and get as much internship experience as possible.

Aida wants graduating seniors to know that now is the time to take risks. She can’t imagine what her life would look like now if she hadn’t taken that first step. Aida said moving away from what is familiar can be a vital part of personal and professional growth.

 “Don’t be afraid to branch out to something that you don’t feel comfortable with,” Aida said. “A lot of growth and confidence comes from taking risks.”