Meet the Marshal: IST student marshal, Erica Davis

IST student marshal, Erica Davis

Erica Davis

Credit: Morgan Sewack

DUNMORE, Pa. – Penn State Scranton is shining a spotlight on the campus’ student marshals who will be leading their fellow graduates during the campus’ 56th commencement ceremony procession on May 4 at The Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple. In this series, we’ll feature students who have been selected as student marshals for their respective academic programs. Join us as we delve into their academic journeys, insights, and advice for future students.

Student Marshal:  Erica Davis

Major:  Information Sciences and Technology, B.S. 

Scranton: What are your post-grad plans?

Davis: My post-grad plans are to find a job doing something with web development, ideally with WordPress, so I can develop my skills and build my portfolio. I would then like to start my own consulting business and start building websites for clients on my own.

Scranton: What was your favorite memory at Penn State Scranton?

Davis: My favorite memory at Penn State Scranton was participating in the Undergraduate Research Fair two years in a row. Both of these times I entered with a group, and I really enjoyed getting to create a poster and demonstrate our knowledge of IT with them. I think it’s great that Penn State Scranton offers students a way to showcase their skills and knowledge.

Scranton: What was your favorite learning experience?

Davis: My favorite learning experience was the entirety of IST 331 (Human Centered Design). This class taught me a lot of new concepts and skills I never heard before, such as usability testing, wireframing, and design principles. This class really helped me learn that I love designing websites and creating mockup designs. I also got to work with some great classmates for a semester long project, edit a video for a project, work with a local business startup, and learn from a professional graphic designer.

Scranton: What experience prepared you the most for what is next?

Davis: The experiences that prepared me for what is next were IST 440W and my internship. Both the class and my internship have led to me experiencing what clients are like in the real-world. They both had their ups and downs but taught me a lot. I learned that clients can be difficult to work with at times and not everything is going to live up to your standards or go your way, but if you see the experience through, give it your all, and work with your client, then things can turn around and be a worthwhile experience.

Scranton: Who at Penn State Scranton has supported you and how?

Davis: My top supporters through my time here at Penn State Scranton have been Dr. Debra Smarkusky and Mr. Fred Aebli. Both of them provided a welcoming environment and meaningful learning experience. Through my many semesters with Dr. Deb and Mr. Fred, they have always encouraged me to strive for my best. Both of them taught me so much about the many sides of IT, provided insight into what it’s like in industry and working with real clients, gave me the knowledge and environment to develop my skills, and recognized my strengths, potential, and growth. Dr. Deb and Mr. Fred are two of the greatest professors I’ve ever had, and I’ll forever be grateful for choosing to major in IST here at Penn State Scranton and getting to learn from them.

Scranton: Do you have any advice for incoming students beginning their Penn State journey?

Davis: My advice for incoming students is to start searching for an internship as soon as possible. Finding an internship is not easy, so take every opportunity in the process seriously; attend career fairs, practice interviewing, have your resume formally reviewed, and apply to internships even if you think you aren’t qualified. Being prepared and starting early will put you in a better position when your senior year rolls around.

Meet the Marshal series

Stay tuned as we continue to highlight our student marshals for their outstanding accomplishments. Each individual represents the dedication, talent and spirit of excellence that define the Penn State Scranton community.