Email a Professor Today

I’m made the 5 hour trek back to my Alma mater, Miami University, Thursday after work to lead a few Entrepreneurial Marketing classes taught by my favorite college professor.  This professor, Mark Lacker, has impacted the way I think.

I’m not sure exactly how we reconnected.  I know I wrote him an email at some point after graduation and, to this day, I’m very curious what that email said.  Whatever the case I’m really glad I sent that email.

It has been 5 years since I sat in the same class that I led last week.  Mark’s class is one of those classes that just clicked with me.  The kind you never forget.  I still have the books from the class and refer to them often (because he assigned us real life, applicable books rather than text books) and still think about the speakers he brought in.  Mark taught me what a blog is, what guerrilla marketing is, how to bootstrap and Mark was the first person who suggested to me that interactive marketing was on the rise.  If I hadn’t been in his class, I would never have started this blog.

More importantly, Mark and I have continued our mentor/mentee relationship.  As my career changes and grows, Mark is always there to listen and coach me along the way.  And now, five years later, I’m going to his classes to talk to them about interactive marketing, social media and blogging. Neat!

Although I covered lessons about using Twitter for business and branding yourself online, I think what the students will value the most is getting a preview of life after college. Hopefully I gave them a sense that life after college isn’t so bad and that networking is crucial.  And that, regardless of what job you accept after graduation, you should never stop pursuing your passions outside of your job.

The point of this post isn’t pure nostalgia though.  I’d like to give you a challenge.

Do you still keep in contact with your favorite professor from college?  Have you ever emailed professors after graduation just to say hello and see what they’ve been up to?

This week, email a professor.

Yes, even if you have been out of college for five years.  Even if you think they don’t remember you.  They probably do remember you, and, if not, they are probably very excited to hear from a former student.

Professors don’t choose their profession because it pays big money.  They become professors because they truly care about the success and welfare of their students.  Those who go beyond just attending the class, will get a LOT out of staying in touch with their professors.  I am a testament to this.  I know that the rewards of staying in touch with Mark have just begun and that we will have a lifelong friendship.

College definitely changed the course of my life.  I’m so glad that I can give back a little something to the school that means so much to me.  Thanks to the Mark and his students for having me.  And please feel free to use me as a resource on your journey!

Nicole Emerick

Nicole Emerick founded Ms. Career Girl in 2008 to help other ambitious young professional women thrive in a career they love. Ironically, growing MsCareerGirl helped Nicole transition her own career from commercial banker to digital marketer. Today Nicole leads the social media team at a large advertising agency in Chicago. Nicole also served as an adjunct professor at DePaul University where she helped develop the careers of PR, Advertising and Communications students. Tweet with Nicole @_NicoleEmerick.

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