Nashareé Thomas

Nashareé Thomas

August 3, 2021

Nashareé Thomas (2021)

Nashareé Thomas originally moved the United States from Jamaica in 2013. After graduating from Truman, she briefly moved to New Jersey before returning to rural Missouri. Since graduation, Nashareé has worked in several industries and currently, serves as an Analyst at Charter Spectrum Communications in St. Louis, MO. Nashareé recently took her first solo trip, in May 2021, to Mexico where she traveled across the state of Yucatán and plans to continue working on her travel bucket list.

What year did you graduate and what was your concentration?

I graduated from Truman in December 2016 with a concentration in Journalism.

What extra-/co-curricular activities did you do?

While at Truman I was always involved in one activity or another. The first co-curricular activity I was news reporting for TMN-TV (originally News36 when I started. Editor’s note: and now KTRM Studios). After much hard work I was giving the opportunity produce the online news broadcast. I was also a member of the African Students Association (ASA). The aim of the organization is to serve as a resource for diversity and cultural awareness of topics regarding the various countries on the African continent. During my sophomore year, I served as a ResLife Apartment Manager at Campbell Apartments. As a junior I became an International Student Ambassador to help foreign students adjust to life in the United States, specifically in Missouri.

Nashareé (far left) and the “GRAP” (Grim and the Apartments) student advisors and apartment managers (2014).

Did you go to grad school? If so, where?  Was it immediately after you left Truman or did you wait?  Why?

I am currently enrolled at Fort Hays State University, where I’m pursuing a Masters in Organizational Leadership. I waited a few years to attend graduate school because my interests had changed since leaving Truman and I also wanted to obtain a degree that aligned with my corporate experiences and career goals.

What was your first job after graduation?

My first job after graduating from Truman was at Clarkson Eyecare as a Patient Care Specialist and Trainer. During that time, I served as a liaison between patients and internal/external health care providers. Additionally, I created training and development material for junior employees.

Nashareé at the San Antonio de Padua Convent in Izamal, Mexico (2021).

What work do you do/What are you doing now?

Currently I’m a level two Analyst at the national telecommunication and mass media company, Charter Spectrum Communications. My job tasks are centered around auditing, reporting, and data correction. During the spike of the pandemic, I had the opportunity to work on a project helping to provided state funded internet to students in southern states to ensure access to virtual learning opportunities.

How has your Liberal Arts/COMM education helped you?

Since graduating Truman, I have worked in a few different field/industries and I believe that I have been able to transition well and be flexible because of my Liberal Arts education. While the majority of my classes were centered around my major, I had the opportunity to take other classes that broadened my scope. This made me more appealing in the job market once I graduated. Even within the Communication Department, there was a wide variety of classes offered, so I was able to mix and match courses to have a well-rounded schedule. From mandatory classes such as Public Speaking to courses such as  Communication Law and Communication and Democracy, both of which I found to be two most interesting non-journalism classes offered by the department, the options were numerous.

What was your greatest accomplishment at Truman?

I strongly believe my greatest accomplishment at Truman was graduating. While at Truman I faced several unforeseen financial difficulties that almost resulted in me having to discontinue my education. Yet, through hard work, dedication, and a combination of grants and scholarships I was able to graduate. Special thank you to the Office of Advancement, the Financial Aid Office, and the Registrar’s Office. 😊

Nashareé as featured in The Index for one of her student research presentations (2016). Another accomplishment she should be proud of.

Why is Truman a good place for a student to study?

Truman is unique in its approach to education. Theory is always important, but for visual and tactile learners like myself, the teachings at Truman are second to none. As a Communication major, my classes blended both the theoretical and the practical, providing fantastic experiences. Despite not recognizing it at first, Truman’s location is ideal for focusing on one’s studying. The small town and campus organizations offer plenty of activities to engage with on the weekends and during down time, but not so much that I found it distracting from my studies. Most of my professors were genuinely interested in my success and played an active role in the educational lives of their students.

What would you say a COMM student should absolutely do while at Truman?

Every COMM student should definitely get involved in the Truman Media Network, whether it’s with the TV, newspaper, or the radio. Its great to have those professional experiences and the memories from the interactions will last a lifetime. Even if your concentration isn’t journalism, working at TMN offers students a change to experience an agile work environment, with the room for error and learning, before embarking into the work force.

Nashareé (3rd fr left) & her TMN-TV cohort at the National College Television Workshop (2014).

What advice would you give someone who wants to go into the same line of work as you?

My advice is be open! Do not limit yourself to just the classes in your major. Register for classes with a purpose. Learn as much as you can in your electives. Branch out. Some of the skills I use at work have nothing to with my major, but my electives played a big role in learning and enhancing them.

What do you miss most about campus/Kirksville?

That’s easy, the Greek Corner Gyros downtown and all the events on the Quad (there was always something taking place, free food and goodies, concerts, fairs, awareness campaigns, etc.  You name it, it probably took place on the Quad).

What tag line would you create for the COMM department at Truman?

The Truman State Communication Department:  “Come for the degree, stay for the knowledge and experience, leave with marketable skills.”

If you could come back to Truman and teach a class for a semester, what would be its title and what would it be about?

Nashareé celebrating graduating from Truman (2016).

Great question.  Driven by my current educational pursuit, if I could come back to Truman to teach, I would teach a class on Communication and Leadership Development. The objectives of the class would be for students to understand:

  • The foundations of leadership
  • Leadership styles
  • Role of communication in leadership development
  • Communication and leadership in collaborative teams and organizational environment

I do believe leadership courses would be a great addition to the COMM Department course list, perhaps as an introductory course alongside Public Speaking.

If you would like to learn more of Nashareé’s story, or you want to learn more about the Department of Communication, contact us!