Determination and hard work helped Yessenia Nunez become the first member of her family to go to college-- and upon graduation in December her hard work will materialize. Upon transferring to Illinois State University last year from Illinois Valley Community College, Nunez continued learning all she could about public relations and joined the ISU Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. Nunez says that being a public relations major has taught her the importance of not procrastinating and staying organized. Nunez said, “I like that I have options, and I have always imagined myself in the busy world of public relations.”
Nunez also remarked on the benefits of joining PRSSA. “ISU PRSSA has so many opportunities, and I really enjoy the times we all laugh together and can relax. It is nice to be able to have a laugh and meet new people.” Nunez went on to say that the most important thing she has learned from ISU PRSSA and attending ISU has been to not compare herself to others, but rather to always work at her own pace and be proud of what she can do.
When she is not doing school work or participating in ISU PRSSA, Nunez takes it upon herself to explore opportunities outside of ISU’s campus, such as volunteering at the Humane Society of Central Illinois, which she visits once a week. “I do whatever they ask me to do. I clean, do laundry, and walk the dogs. Some jobs are not so glamorous, like cleaning the kitten room, but I do get to play with the animals afterward.”
Nunez says that her biggest motivation to keep an open mind and take on all the opportunities presented to her is her family. “I am the first person in my entire family to graduate from college, so that is really exciting for us. I have three younger brothers who have been my ultimate motivation.” When asked about what she hopes to accomplish in the field of public relations, Nunez said, “I hope to do something with event planning, so I can take my excellent organizations skills to any job I land.”
Even with the life-changing event of graduation approaching quickly, Nunez stays grounded. When asked to describe herself in three words, Nunez simply said, “Hardworking, goofy, and an old-soul.” She then explained, “Hardworking: I’m the first of my family to go to college, and I take it very seriously. I go to school full time, work part time, volunteer, and then there are the endless hours of homework. Goofy: I love making people laugh and getting a reaction so I will do anything and probably wear anything to make others laugh. I worked at an ice cream parlor for seven years, and three summers in a row I dressed up as an ice cream cone and danced outside with a dancing chocolate sundae and a banana.” And lastly, “Old-Soul: I’m not the average 21-year-old. I love everything antique, and when I hang out with my friends, staying in is my favorite.”
Interview by Chloe Kasper
PRecisely PR is the blog of the Illinois State University Chapter of the PRSSA. We write about Chapter events, the public relations industry, member profiles, and more.