MSU StratCom student Carly Watson just landed a new job. Congratulations, Carly!
We heard you have some good news, what happened?
After nearly 10 years serving as the Project and Events Coordinator for the MSU Debate Team, I was named the Director of Debate at the start of February.
What are you most excited about with this new opportunity?
I’ve been a part of MSU Debate for a long time – I actually debated for MSU when I was an undergraduate student from 2006 to 2010. I’ve been an MSU Debate employee then since 2011. Over my time with the team, I’ve been able to see first-hand how much the team means to people and be a part of the legacy of the team’s success. I’m excited that I’ll be able to continue those traditions in my new leadership position. In particular, the debate community has been thrust into the world of online debate competitions and instruction in the wake of COVID-19. The intersection of debate and online delivery is something I’m excited to tackle with MSU Debate even after the travel restrictions are lifted. I see a lot of potential in using online debate to reduce barriers to access going forward.
Do you feel like your MSU StratCom experience helped in any way?
My StratCom experience was essential in feeling as if I was a good fit for this position. I developed so many practical and marketable skills (e.g. social media content design or strategic storytelling) but, more importantly, it taught me a way of approaching challenges that was invaluable. I was lucky enough to be going through the job application process while I was taking CAS 837 (Catalyst Thinking in the C-Suite) and that class crystallized my approach to leadership and gave me the vocabulary to be able to explain it to the hiring committee.
What advice do you have for other MSU StratCom students looking to advance in their careers?
It can feel challenging to make connections in the online space, but they’re so important to getting the most out of the program. I found a support network in the students in my cohort, but also in the instructional staff. The program is great at providing resources if you’re willing to use them. It was definitely out of my comfort zone, but being able to build relationships with the instructors and other students really helped me advance.