The Class of 2019: Riahnna Whitely

Hometown: Fort Worth, Texas

Majors: Strategic Communication and Film, Television and Digital Media

What made you decide to come to TCU?
I’m from the area so I always knew about TCU. Everyone has so much school spirit and it’s such a positive environment. Additionally, my sister attended TCU, so it was kind of a no-brainer.

What drew you to the Strategic Communication program?
I didn’t know much about the Bob Schieffer College of Communication, but I knew I wanted to major in strategic communication and film, television and digital media. Strategic communication was a major draw for me because it’s so versatile. I like the security of knowing I have several options for my career. I could find work in nonprofit, agency, entertainment, etc. Communication is needed in every profession, so the opportunities are endless.

Why did you pick your second major?
I like watching movies and television so I thought the classes would be interesting. A lot of things I learn in my classes often correlate as well. It’s also so nice having all my classes in one building.

What was your favorite strategic communication class and why?
Public Relations and Strategic Writing. Both professors I had didn’t just teach directly out of a textbook but brought in their real-life experience. It made the class much more interesting and entertaining!

What was the most memorable experience you had at TCU?
Studying abroad in London was my most memorable experience I’ve had at TCU. Although I wasn’t at TCU, I was with TCU students, the majority of whom I hadn’t met before. We had the most amazing experience being away and traveling together. Many of the people I studied abroad with are now my closest friends. If I hadn’t done study abroad, I never would have met them, so I’m thankful that TCU allowed me to have that opportunity. 

If you could, what advice would you give your first-year self?
Use your pass/no credit (this is TCU’s option to take two of your classes, as pass/no credit instead of for a letter grade). I could have used both pass/no credits my first year, but I thought it was too early. However, I finished the TCU core by my sophomore year, and ended up not using it at all, since you can’t use it on major or minor classes. It definitely would’ve relieved some of the pressure of my first year.