Christina Harisiadis

Along with her strategic communication major, Christina is minoring in leadership, sociology, and Spanish.
Graduation year
Arlington Heights, Illinois
Strategic Communication


What is your major and what made you decide to pursue it?

I originally began in journalism on my high school newspaper, which I loved. However, I knew I didn’t want to pursue it as a profession. I tried taking other classes my first semester, but kept returning to journalism. While exploring the Hubbard School website, I found the strategic communication track and the rest is history. 

What has been your favorite part of your experience at the Hubbard School?

The professors. They are absolutely amazing at engaging students. I hear about boring professors and I cannot relate. I swear they could make watching grass grow interesting. 

What class or professor has had the biggest impact on you?

Media Ethics, for sure. It was the first class in which I truly participated. Chris Ison has this way of finding never-ending new angles on just about anything. He would constantly challenge us to consider another angle and then act. Also, I cannot answer this question without mentioning my high school newspaper advisor, Stefanie McCleish (nee Pehr). She taught me the hard and soft skills necessary to be in this field. Even though I didn’t continue with professional journalism, she introduced me to the field and helped me grow into it as well. 

What minors, internships, or activities are you pursuing outside of your major? How do you think these enhance your major or your future career plans?

Outside of journalism, I’m minoring in leadership, sociology, and Spanish. I dance with the Dance Collective and also serve as an honors ambassador and mentor. I also volunteer at the YWCA with Girls Inc. I would say my extra involvements have heavily shaped what I want to do with my degree in the future. I would love to reshape and reform narrative surrounding art or underserved communities, working with both would be a bonus.

What course would you recommend for other students in your major?

Crisis Communication with Amy O’Connor changed my life. Communicating in crisis is the most delicate form of communication. You need to consider all elements in a consolidated period of time, and the stakes run high. I feel like once you’ve practiced communicating at that level, other forms of communication seem less daunting. Also, you learn to look out for the precursors to a crisis and how to act proactively.

What is your dream job?

It isn’t a specific position, but I want to make art more accessible to all communities. I don’t want financial or physical barriers to prevent people from being able to express themselves. Art can allow people to make personal breakthroughs and find new passions, whatever the medium may be, and everyone should be able to do that no matter what. 

What advice do you have for future Hubbard School students?

Trust in your abilities. I felt like I didn’t know what I was doing for a while, but just last semester I worked on a group project that got selected to be used by a local business. Trust your professors, trust what you learn, and trust yourself. 

What is one aspect of your major that surprised you?

I don’t think I ever realized how connected strategic communication is to the other Hubbard School majors [journalism, mass communication]. You can just focus on your specific major, but it serves well to understand the others. You will work with them in the future, and the J-school does a great job including their elements throughout the curricula.

What do you wish you had known about your career path before now?

You can literally do whatever you want with your degree. This could technically be said for any major, but I feel like it’s a little different in the J-school. The majors in the J-school don’t just apply to journalism. I think for a long time I thought I could only use my degree in a conventionally journalistic field, but there really is no such thing. Report on what you want. Advertise what or for who you want. Do PR for who you want. You are never actually confined to one field and I think that’s the beauty of it.  

Christina Harisiadis