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Carly Pippin

Carly Pippin studying in the garden of the Chapel of Memories

Hometown: Carthage, MS

Major: Undeclared

Carly felt pulled to Mississippi State, but not a specific major.

“I looked at interior design, engineering, political science. Nothing felt right.”

Meanwhile, Carly started joining organizations.

“Getting involved forced me to meet people, hear their stories and discover career paths I hadn’t thought of before.”

Another bonus?

“Every organization I’ve joined, I had to interview for, so now I have great interview skills. I’ve also learned how to work in a team with all types of people: people who are nothing like me — and exactly like me!”

With time, she found her major, too: Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations and a minor in English.

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Hugo Garcia

Hugo Garcia at a computer with camera equiptment

Hometown: Senatobia, MS

Major: Marketing

Hugo’s entrepreneurial streak comes from his parents, who didn’t get to go to college.

“I’ve seen them work wonders. I thought, if I put that same work into my education, how far could I go?”

The college search was new for Hugo's family, but they soon discovered Mississippi State — and its dazzling e-Center.

“I hadn’t seen anything like that at any other college. That’s when I realized MSU could help me not just learn about business, but actually start a business.”

Make that two (so far): A DJ service and a videography studio. Still, Hugo makes time to give back. Last summer, he helped multicultural families like his fully understand what Mississippi State offers — in Spanish.

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Jake Hartzburg

Jake Hartzburg working on a project in engineering lab

Hometown: Fox Lake, IL

Major: Electrical Engineering

Jake is part of a group of researchers at MSU's Bagley College of Engineering developing autonomous robots to safely clean up radioactive materials. The best part?

“We get to use equipment in our lab that people in the industry actually use.” 

Even as a junior, Jake's résumé boasts real engineering experience, thanks to a full-time internship in his field. And his phone?

"It's filled with names of industry executives I met through different organizations and clubs for engineering students."

One day soon, contacts like these will help Jake land his dream job. For new students, Jake has this advice:

“Join a club in your major. It’s a good way to network and figure out if this career is right for you.”

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Kelsey Duncan

Kelsey Duncan studying at Griffis Hall

Hometown: Marietta, GA

Major: Communication

Kelsey’s childhood revolved around football. Her dad coached, and her brother always said she’d make a great sportscaster. Now, she dreams of returning to MSU one day to cover a sporting event as a broadcaster for a major network.

“I help film and edit videos of all MSU athletics through Hail State Productions.” 

Also on her résumé?

“I’ve served as a resident advisor and in leadership programs like Day One, so future employers will see I’m willing to help out.”

This sports fan always had her heart set on an SEC school. But which one?

“Since MSU is the most diverse school in the SEC, I figured I could feel at home, learn about different cultures and try new things. The warm welcome was really what got me.”

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Khalil Cain

Khalil Cain going through paperwork

Hometown: Eupora, MS

Major: Business Technology Education

Khalil grew up coming to Mississippi State for games and couldn't wait to be a student.

"It was even better than I imagined."

The intimidating lecture halls he saw in the movies were nothing like his small classes with professors he could actually talk to. Like many students, Khalil discovered a passion for something other than his original major.

"When I changed my major, the College of Education welcomed me with open arms.”

So much so, he now serves as a College of Education ambassador, encouraging otherstudents to follow in his footsteps.

“Now that I know what it feels like to find the right major, I can help otherstudents do the same.”

His favorite part?

“When I see their faces light up."

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Nada Aziz

Nada Aziz in Architecture studio

Hometown: Greenwood, MS

Major: Architecture

In high school, Nada created a giant parade float, theater sets and a storefront for her community through a local arts nonprofit. That experience sparked her passion for community-engaged design, which led her to MSU’s College
of Architecture, Art and Design.

“We do planning for small towns. We have the Carl Small Town Center and the Gulf Coast Community Design Studio, where I did an externship on rebuilding after hurricanes.” 

That kind of hands-on experience leads to stunning portfolios that are landing MSU graduates jobs at firms like Perkins+Will and HOK.

"Our studio is project-based. Through projects, we discover how to create with the principles of design.”

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Samantha Seamon

Samantha Seamon measuring tree growth

Hometown: Prattville, AL

Major: Forestry

Sam grew up hunting, fishing and being in the woods.

“When I heard about the career paths available through MSU's College of Forest Resources, it lined up with everything I enjoy and everything I want to preserve.”

"I feel like I already have a job in place. The amount of business cards in my wallet is amazing to me.”

Sam's department has taken her around the nation to meet professional foresters. That is, when they aren't coming to her.

“Just this past year, we had 17 companies hold interviews at MSU—that’s 17 opportunities to network for internships, professional experience and full-time jobs.”

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Taylor Bocage

Taylor Bocage portrait next to bully statue in the Junction

Hometown: New Orleans, LA

Major: Fashion Design and Merchandising

Watching Project Runway as a kid, Taylor dreamed of joining the fashion industry. She looked at specialized design schools but felt MSU had more to offer. By her first year, Taylor was networking with fashion execs in New York
and even snagged an interview.

“My professors coached me on everything from what to wear to what questions to ask if I got a job offer." 

But her world is bigger than fashion.

“You only go to college once. I wanted the whole experience. Now, I’m in an amazing program — and I also get to go to SEC football games!”