students sitting on wall

Meet Annika Roe '22, communication studies

From shy speaker to center stage

When it came time for Annika Roe '22 to choose a college, she didn't have to look far from her Minneapolis home. With Hamline right next door, she found a top-tier education where she could have close relationships with her professors.

"I knew I would do better in a small class setting so I could have good relationships with my professors, I would know who they were, and if I was having trouble, I could ask them for help," said Roe, a communication studies major.

She quickly developed close relationships with her professors, particularly her faculty advisor, Suda Ishida. "I don't even think my parents believe in me as much as my advisor does," Roe laughed. "She tells me I should be president."

My student job gave me a lot of problem-solving skills that I didn't have before. I feel really capable now of applying to other careers and very confident in interviews, and if I hadn't had that experience of getting into the nitty gritty details of an office environment, I wouldn't have learned that."

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Annika Roes

As she dove into her studies, Roe became well versed in the art of communication.

"It's like getting a degree in persuasion," she said. "It's so satisfying getting people to agree with what you're saying. That transfers over into advertising, where I'm going after graduation, where you're trying to prove to people why they should choose your product over a different one."

Roe wasn't always a smooth communicator; her persuasive speaking is the product of hard work.

"At first I was really scared of public speaking. In high school, my face would always turn red," Roe recalled. "Now I cope with it better. I still get nervous, but I learned that everybody is nervous, and I figured out how to be comfortable in front of a crowd."

A moment of vindication came when Roe presented before a philosophy class, which required audience members to give feedback on just three presentations out of over twenty presenters.

"I decided to put what I know into that class, and it paid off," Roe said. "I got 15 reviews, and they were all very positive. It was a little triumph for me."

As Roe transitions from studying communications to working in advertising, she's bringing the experience of working in Hamline's own marketing department with her.

"That job gave me a lot of problem-solving skills that I didn't have before," Roe reflected. "My student job gave me a lot of problem-solving skills that I didn't have before. I feel really capable now of applying to other careers and very confident in interviews, and if I hadn't had that experience of getting into the nitty gritty details of an office environment, I wouldn't have learned that."

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