“As my days at LMU start to dwindle, I think the thing I’ll miss the most is the incredible faculty that work at this school. Everyone at this University wants you to succeed, and I believe that’s one of the most valuable things about LMU.”
With graduation upon us, we spoke to some of CFA’s talented #LMU19 graduates as they gear up to leave LMU and take on the world. In our We Love Our Grads series, we asked a graduating student from each of our departments to share some words about their time here, as well as their plans for the future.
Talin Hakopyan ’19
Major: Communication Studies
Next step: Law School
How did you decide to become a Communication Studies major?
Human connection has always been something I’ve been intrigued by and have always wanted to explore. Before transferring to LMU, I attended Mt. San Antonio Community College where I received my associate’s degree in journalism, so deciding to become communication studies major just came naturally to me. After speaking to LMU alums and doing my research on the communication studies classes LMU offered, I knew it would be a perfect fit for me, and I was right. This major allowed me to not only grow as a person but provided me with personal and professional skills that I will carry with me for the rest of my life.
Tell us a little about your time at LMU!
My two years at LMU have flown by, but I’ve created some of my favorite memories here. I am a part of the Tau Sigma National Honor Society and the Lambda Pi Eta National Honor Society for Communication Studies. I became a peer advisor during the start of my senior year, and it was incredibly fulfilling to welcome a new student to LMU, just as my peer adviser graciously did for me. While juggling coursework, internships, and volunteering, I was extremely dedicated to achieving academic excellence. As a first-generation college student, I made it my goal to maintain a 4.0, which I’m proud to say I was able to do. Due to my academic achievements, I received the 2019 Program Scholar award for the Communication Studies major and the College Scholar award for the College of Communication and Fine Arts.
What are your post-graduation plans?
After graduating from LMU, the next year of my life will consist of studying for and taking the LSAT, then applying to law schools. Before attending LMU, I had the thought of attending law school in the back of my mind, but I wasn’t quite sure if it was something that I’d go through with. I love to learn and am such an academic at heart, so I don’t want my educational journey to end at LMU. I’ve always been passionate about law, so attending law school is a challenge that I’m excited to take. Through the courses I’ve taken at LMU, my love and desire for the law increased almost immediately. Communication Studies is such a dynamic major that can lead you towards many different career paths, so I’m excited to take the knowledge I’ve acquired at LMU and apply it to my future studies in law.
I’ve always wanted to combine my passion for the arts and the law but was unsure about how I would be able to do so. I was introduced to the field of intellectual and artistic property while researching my first-year theory course. Songwriters, producers and audio engineers are just some of the people who are severely underpaid and unrecognized for their artistic property. I aspire to join the fight in securing artists’ and creatives’ rights to their intellectual property.
Did you have a particular experience that led you to this path?
There wasn’t one particular experience that led to this path, but I did meet and work closely with several of my professors and advisers to talk about my future. I was so fortunate to have people like faculty members Allison Soeller, Abhik Roy, Meng Li, Pat Oliver, and Kathy Norris believe in me and reassure me that a bright future was ahead for me. I’ve experienced nothing but love and support at LMU, and I am eternally thankful for that.
How do you feel you experience at LMU prepared you for this next step?
While my time at LMU was incredible, there were times that I felt overwhelmed and defeated. During these times, I grew as a person and understood the importance of working hard, time-management and giving yourself time to breathe. Law school isn’t going to be easy, but I’m positive I’ll be able to do well because I’m coming out of LMU a better person than when I arrived.
What is your favorite thing about LMU?
As my days at LMU start to dwindle, I think the thing I’ll miss the most is the incredible faculty that work at this school. I’ve never met a faculty member that wasn’t willing to help me with whatever I needed. The Communications Studies department feels like a family. I’m going to miss walking up the stairs in Foley and visiting my past and present professors in their offices. Whether it was to ask for clarification on an assignment, vent about the uncertainty of life post-graduation, or to catch up on each other’s lives, their doors were always open. Everyone at this University wants you to succeed, and I believe that’s one of the most valuable things about LMU.
What advice do you have for underclassmen?
My advice to underclassmen is that you must take advantage of all the resources LMU offers. Whether it be getting involved in service organizations, meeting with the advisers at the Career and Professional Development Center, or joining an honor society, there are like-minded people everywhere. At some point, everyone is intimidated, frustrated or filled with uncertainty, but you’re not alone. Find your tribe and flourish.
Pictured Above: Talin poses with her two awards. Photo Courtesy of Talin Hakopyan.