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What Can You Do With a Communication and Media Degree?

An Interview with Chloe Leuthaeuser (CMN '17)

​​​​You're no doubt passionate about what you're studying, but have you ever felt the pressure of what comes next? Perhaps that pressure comes from creating a plan to ensure you achieve your professional goals. Maybe you're still wondering what career paths are open to you in order to pursue a job that truly excites you. Either way, the alumni of the College of Communication are here to help you! This series of alumni interviews will showcase various careers you might want to pursue after graduation.

Let these alumni experiences guide you in using your ambitions and DePaul education to achieve success in the working world. 

The following is our interview with Chloe Leuthaeuser: 

Chloe Leuthaeuser

I am a senior account supervisor in Edelman's corporate advisory services department on the corporate brand team where I bring strategic solutions to clients and implement high-quality, sustainable programs. With a focus on executive visibility and thought leadership, sustainability and purpose, I have worked with clients across a variety of industries including CPG, healthcare, energy, transportation and food.

I began at Edelman as an immersion associate in a prestigious rotational leadership program where I rotated through seven of Edelman's largest departments. In my nearly five-year tenure at Edelman, I've worked with SC Johnson, Hologic, Beyond Meat, DIRECTV, UnitedHealth Group, GE Renewable Energy, Nike, Conagra, Eli Lilly & Company and many others.

With a passion for non-profit work, I have supported several of Edelman's pro-bono clients including Project H.O.O.D., Youth Guidance and HACE. Outside work, I serve as president of the Make-A-Wish Illinois Associate Board.

A winter 2017 graduate of DePaul University, I earned a bachelor's degree, magna cum laude, in communication and media​ with minors in Spanish ​and marketing.​ I'm a member of the inaugural Young Advisory Board​ for DePaul's College of Communication. I'm originally from Boulder, Colorado, and enjoy adventuring as much as possible—skiing in the winter and hiking in the summer.

Who is your current employer, and what is your current position?

Edelman,  Senior Account Supervisor, Corporate Brand and Reputation.

What was your journey to your current employment?

While I was a senior at DePaul, one of my professors (the one and only Don Ingle) nominated me to attend a networking mixer at Edelman Chicago for their 18-month rotational leadership program. After attending the event and meeting people in the program and leadership, I knew that this was the opportunity I was searching for. I put everything into preparing for the interview process and was fortunate enough to be selected as one of the eight immersion associates (out of nearly 2,000 applicants) in the 2017 class.

What does a typical day of work look like for you?

I'm sure you hear this from everyone, but every day is different! On any given day I could be writing messaging, securing a speaking engagement for a CEO, coordinating major media partnerships for clients, working with influencers, developing years-long strategies, trend spotting to see where a client executive can comment, drafting LinkedIn posts and articles for the C-suite, coordinating projects with our internal teams and so much more. I love the high-paced nature and that I'm working on three-plus clients at any given time — it keeps things fresh and exciting!

What is the most fulfilling part of your current position?

Being able to work on meaningful and purposeful work. I have the opportunity to work on numerous projects and clients that I am personally passionate about — projects that I feel are making the world a better place, and that has been incredibly fulfilling.

What are the most valuable things you gained from your education with the College of Communication? How have they helped you get to where you are now?

The best things I learned from the College of Communication were the real-world skills and experience we learned in and out of the classroom. 

In our courses, our professors (who were leaders at the firms we aspired to work for) taught us skills and techniques that are critical to succeeding in the communications and PR world. Classes such as PR Campaigns gave students the opportunity to have hands-on exposure to working on real client briefs.

Is there a College of Communication instructor or professor who left an impact on you? If so, what did you learn from them?

I learned so much from all of my professors, but I have to say Don Ingle​ had the biggest impact on my life and future career. Don taught me everything from the fundamentals of PR, the importance of being a strong writer, to how to effectively network (which landed me my dream job at Edelman after school). Don has given me so much so it's my honor to be able to give back to him and his students by guest lecturing and connecting with students for informational interviews.

Is there a specific experience at DePaul as a whole that left a lasting impression on you?

We were set up for success from day one at DePaul because our education was from the classroom to the city. 

DePaul's focus on equipping students to begin internships as early as sophomore year truly gives students a leg up for the post-college job search. Being able to take what we were learning in the classroom and apply it to jobs in real time was incredibly helpful and prepared me immensely for a fast-paced agency job directly out of college. 

What words of advice do you have for current students?

Your path doesn't need to look like your peers. It's so easy to compare yourself to others, but it's important to trust that you are on the right journey for you. 

I remember worrying I didn't have enough internships, or start early enough, or didn't have Ivy League experience, but when I got to the interview process, I forgot all of that and made sure to show them how and why I was beyond capable for the role. 

You (and only you) are in charge of your career so take it into your own hands!

You can connect with Chloe on LinkedIn.