Advertising Doctoral Candidate Jodi Smith

Jodi SmithThis past semester, I was fortunate to be selected to be an IE Pre-Doctoral Mentor for a master's candidate at Texas State University who was considering pursuing a Ph.D. I truly believe the process was a learning experience for both of us and I feel extremely grateful for the opportunity.

I have been a teaching assistant for several years and one of my favorite parts of the job is the time I am able to spend one to one with the students. The IE mentoring experience gave me the chance to do this with one special student all semester long.

We met regularly for coffee and had many discussions over the telephone and email. Together we devised a plan of action for her to follow through the semester so that she would be able to be closer to making a decision regarding her education. By the end of the semester, my student: had revived her interest in advertising by reading several current industry books and attending guest lectures; became more plugged into the advertising community by volunteering with the Austin Advertising Federation; and identified additional research areas of interest within the field.

Our meetings allowed me to articulate my journey through the doctoral program and to give her words of guidance as she contemplated applying to Ph.D. programs. As a mentor, I didn't want to persuade or discourage my student to obtain a Ph.D., but instead provide her with the most accurate account of what she should expect within a doctoral program. I wanted to communicate the high level of commitment required but also share with her the many enjoyable aspects of studying at the doctoral level. It was helpful for my student to hear a first-hand account of my experiences, but it was equally beneficial for me to have the chance to share with her what have I learned, the struggles I have faced, and the excitement I have for the future. I am sincerely thankful for having such a rewarding and enriching opportunity.