Texas State University Advertising Master's Candidate Irene Kosela

Irene KoselaI wanted to be a part of the IE Texas State Pre-Doctoral Mentorship program for the experience of working with an Advertising PhD student. I did not know anyone who was pursuing a PhD, so meeting Jodi has been a very enriching experience for my mind and spirit. I have also gained a better understanding of what a person can do once they have earned a PhD. Jodi and I met throughout the semester to discuss our classes and the projects we were working on. We talked a lot about the world of academia and what it means to have a PhD. We also discussed different paths to choose from when pursuing higher education.

What I learned

Before this semester, I thought the only path to getting a PhD required writing a thesis. Now I understand that programs differ, and not every school or field requires a thesis. I researched online to find different PhD programs and requirements for admission. Jodi, my mentor, taught me about her experience and how she made her decision to get her PhD. She very generously shared all of her knowledge with me, including how she deals with the day-to-day life of a PhD student. I know that earning a PhD involves hard work, but to actually hear Jodi's experience added a personal dimension that made the situation very real for me. I think one of the most important things I learned from Jodi is that I need to continue to remind myself why I enjoy advertising. There is so much to be excited about in the field, and it is important to get involved with opportunities that will keep me in touch with the latest developments. Through the reading, I was taken on a trip through the history of advertising. I really enjoyed going back to my undergraduate days and more importantly, to the roots of adverting. It was fun to explore new research areas and think more deeply about the subjects that interest me.

How it will help me

After taking time to reflect on what this experience has meant to me, I am able to appreciate the value it has added to my academic career. I have held a full time accounting job since I started graduate school, and it has been very stressful. I think this semester with Jodi has breathed life back into my excitement for the field of advertising. This experience has helped me to realize that earning a PhD is made up of hard work, dedication and focus. I have a great deal of respect for the process and feel very privileged that Jodi took the time to get to know and help me. This semester, I have been able to take more time to explore research areas, which has helped me to get excited about what the future holds for me.