Thursday, February 17, 2011

Former Coug Comes Back

By Jenna Cook
A former Coug spoke Tuesday night to the Washington State University Public Relations Student Society of America, about how her education and passion for life has helped her throughout her career.
            “I wanted to save lives,” said Kim Papich about her job in the healthcare industry.
            Kim Papich, the public information officer for Spokane Regional Health District, and a former WSU graduate, also previously worked for several companies in the healthcare field such as Itron Inc. and TRA Medical Imaging. At WSU, Papich was taught basic writing, grammar and style rules in classes such as Journalism 305 and Communication 295. She also learned about real-world campaign planning and working with a client in Public Relations 412.
            Papich had two internships in healthcare while attending WSU. She said internships can help show what skills to focus on to be successful. Papich also said internships give great experience and an idea of what you would like to do for a career.
            Papich said she learned a lot at WSU during the three and a half years she attended she wishes she learned a lot more. “Writing is always an uphill battle,” said Papich about the need to learn more about writing. Papich also wishes she learned more about real-world situations like interviewing skills, and about various types of new technology.
            “It helped hearing from a professional what we needed to prepare ourselves for, outside of what we learn at WSU,” said Lauren A. Peak, a student who attended the meeting.
            Although Papich was not taught these things or may have missed them in class that day, she stressed the importance of education. She explained that this is the time to learn and to take advantage of every opportunity students are given. This education is only given once, so students should get the most they can out of it, she said. Papich was proud she attended WSU, and her education here helped her greatly when she entered the workplace.
            “She really taught us to learn all that we can in college because we only have one chance to take it all in before we have to apply our knowledge and experience to our future careers,” said Alyssa G. King, vice president of the WSU PRSSA.
            “Before I got out of school, a job was a paycheck. Now, it’s something that I need to be passionate about,” Papich said.
            She said in the healthcare field she gets to work and learn about various topics every day. This is what she loves about her job and her career.
            “Money is cool only if it complements your life, a job should compliment your purpose”, she said. Papich wanted to save lives, so working in healthcare is a job she values.
            “I really enjoyed how influential Kim was at telling students to slow down and enjoy every accomplishment they make,” said King. “She really put it into perspective that life moves fast and before we know it we are out of college and into the real world.”


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