Courtney Abrams is a senior Information Management and Technology major. She is from Boston, MA.
Why did you choose the Syracuse University iSchool?
I toured Syracuse University as a junior in high school. My tour guide pointed out the iSchool and showed me around. Both of my parents are involved in technology.
I decided to come to the iSchool and I really connected with my peer advisors; I went to them for advice. Through them, I knew I wanted to get involved on campus and show leadership in those organizations.
How did you get involved in information technology?
I honestly had no idea what I wanted to do, but I had somewhat of a tech background. I liked coding, but also knew that I wanted to have the face-to-face interaction with each other people. There is a need in the industry for more than just knowing the technological aspects.
What’s the internship process like?
I had a local job in high school. After I finished my freshman year, they had a need for a technology intern, so I returned. It was cool to see my change from answering phone calls one summer, to helping them implement a new system my next.
I had a marketing internship at an engineering firm my sophomore year. My junior year I started applying early and I ended up at JP Morgan – I fell in love with the culture. That’s where I will be after I graduate. I’ll be working at a technology analyst program in New York City.
How do you transition from college to career?
There are tons of resources out there in order to help you figure out all the tiny things you wouldn’t think about. You have to take advantage of these chances to make the process easier. My parents, too, are a great resource with them being from big cities.
It’s actually insane. You never think that these four years are going to creep up on you, and then all of a sudden you have a salary and a different set of responsibilities. I don’t know where the time went.
What are some skills you have obtained at the iSchool?
I think coming in freshman year, looking back, I was so shy. I really believe the iSchool helped me break out of my shell.
The school gave me the skills of how to communicate with other people in a clear way. You are also exposed to so many topics here: web design, networking, and presentation skills. They allow to get a solid background in lots of topics, and then you can decide where you want to focus.
Looking back, would you change anything?
I really don’t have that many regrets when I look back. Maybe though I would have started to talk with more people early on. I would want to go up and talk to the people who I did not initially such as career professionals and those who are there to help you grow.
Do you have any advice for incoming Syracuse University students?
Network with the students, the professors, with everyone. Talk to them right now, it really is never too early!
Do you have a favorite moments from the iSchool?
I would say by far, the MLB challenge was my favorite moment in the iSchool. I was with a group this past year with three other students who had never participated before.
The challenge made you think quickly. Looking back, the prompts throughout the years were similar, but my ideas evolved. It’s cool to see how you come up with nothing and see your idea evolve over time. It teaches you to think fast and be adaptable. You start to see how people have different skillsets, and we all worked together to come up with a solution.
I love to sing, so my a cappella group (Editor’s Note: Courtney is a member of Oy Cappella) has really shaped me. The big shows at the end of the semester, and seeing how the group changes over the years, it makes me happy to see where it has come from and where it will go.
One last question! Do you have a secret talent?
That’s a tough question … I beat-box!