Get to know some of our College of Media students! Sumer Hazeen is a Class of 2024 advertising major.
What made you decide to major in advertising?
When I came to the University of Illinois, I was in a different major at first. During my freshman year, I happened to take Advertising 150 with Steve Hall. It was then I realized I needed to major in advertising. I had felt so lost in my previous major but transferring to the College of Media made me feel like I had found my place.
What student organizations are you involved in?
I am currently the Chief Communications Officer for our American Advertising Federation’s (AAF) Illinois chapter. I became a member in my sophomore year. I became part of the executive board for the 2022-2023 school year. I primarily focus on sending debrief emails to members of upcoming events and speakers. I am also involved in Alpha Phi Omega, a service fraternity, and Illini Mentor Program, a mentorship program where I mentor children at a local elementary school. I serve on the social media committee for both these groups, making sure everyone stays informed.
What are your future career goals?
I would like to work in data analytics with social media engagement. My friends recommended I take Advertising 305: Advertising Technology and the Digital World, and I’m enjoying the mixture of advertising and technology. I’d like to start at a smaller company, probably a startup. The ultimate goal is to hopefully get into a bigger corporation and live in a big city. Recently, I was able to learn more about being a data analyst and trading analyst from a speaker who AAF brought from The Trade Desk, a digital marketing company. I feel a degree in advertising can be very diverse and learning from them and taking ADV 305 made me sure I want to work in data analytics in the future.
What advice would you give to other College of Media students?
It can be difficult, but it is important to reach out and learn from others. If you have questions, the faculty in the College of Media is so helpful. Making connections and networking is so important in advertising, so I recommend networking with professors and other classmates. I’ve found that AAF is a great way to network with clients. I’ve known people who have worked with a client and then were offered a position because they held on to that connection. It’s necessary to make these connections and then strengthen them throughout college.
—Interview by Sophia Cepeda, New Voices Intern