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NMSU journalism student receives national multicultural award

Jessica Tarin spent part of last year backpacking across southwest Asia alone and learning four languages. This year the American Advertising Federation named Tarin one of the country’s 50 Most Promising Multicultural Students. She was selected from applicants involved in college chapters of AAF at 29 schools in 19 states across the U.S.

Woman smiling holding award
Jessica Tarin, named one of the 50 Most Promising Multi Cultural Students by the American Advertising Federation, with her award at the three-day program hosted in New York City. (Courtesy Photo)

Tarin, a New Mexico State University journalism and media studies student, is the only honoree selected from New Mexico.

Tarin was selected by a panel of marketing experts from companies including Adobe, Spotify and Target after submitting an application along with a portfolio of work and a personal tagline and hashtag.

“What was really crucial in this process was making the tagline and hashtag powerful and stand out,” said Tarin. “My tagline was ‘I believe your story has the power to inspire,’ with the hashtag, ‘blooming together.’ I believe it encompasses my purpose perfectly. We are in this world to make our dreams happen, so why not?”

In 1997, AAF created the Most Promising Multicultural Student Program as a way to connect the advertising industry with a pool of talented, multicultural college students. Since its start, more than 800 students from 220 colleges and universities have participated. This year’s class represents 29 schools from 19 states across the country. More than 160 college chapters apply for this program and this year’s applicant pool was one of the largest.

The AAF program provided Tarin and her fellow students with the opportunity to not only be recognized but also to attend a three-day program, offering networking, interviewing and industry immersion opportunities with advertising, marketing, and media professionals in New York City.

“I had this opportunity because the journalism department has this organization, Tarin said. “The organizations we have really help give us real life experience. It really opened my eyes to the world of advertising. I realized that I love to be creative and want to always try new things and experiences.”

Last year, Tarin had the opportunity to study abroad in South Korea, an experience that helped change her life and refine her purpose.

“I failed a lot, a lot but I learned to adapt. Learning different ways to do things helped me with my personal growth and now I feel more confident because I learned to do things in different ways, not only my own way.

As a way to incorporate her passion for diversity and social advertising, Tarin is the creative strategist for the Success Through Technology Education (STTE) Foundation in El Paso.

“I create programs to foster youth entrepreneurship in STEAM. I manage all the social media accounts, Tarin said.“To me, diversity is creativity, collaboration and innovation. For example, STEAM education, every industry collaborating together to create, inspire and innovate.”

Tarin has had the opportunity to experience different roles in the Journalism and Media Studies Department in the College of Arts and Sciences. “What is great about this program is that I was able to explore so many different pathways, like broadcasting, print, public relations, and advertising before being able to find my passion.”

After graduation this May, Tarin hopes she can return to Asia and continue to reach beyond her comfort zone and expand her creativity using all the tools she has gained as a student at NMSU.

“My time at NMSU summed up is the journalism tagline – my passion into action. I really believe that during my time here I was able to put my passions into action.”