Student-Soldier Puts Communication Arts Skills to Work


Communication Arts student Ariela Nijamkin put her studies on hold to return to her native Israel to complete her two-year compulsory military service beginning this month and found her communication skills are paying off.  Army testing revealed her high level of communication knowledge and expertise, which led to her being assigned to a position in the Education Corps as an Education Non-Commissioned Officer.  In this role, she will travel around giving lectures and presentations to soldiers on a variety of topics related to international relations, current events, history, and military strategy.  Via email, Ariela said she is “beyond excited” with her new role and credits her communication arts courses with helping her achieve this position.  In particular, she credits Communication Arts faculty member Nathan Kurland and his Public Speaking course with helping her improve her skills and sparking her interest in becoming a better communicator.  With a push from Professor Kurland, Ariela entered the Department’s annual “Speak Off” competition in 2012 and went on to win first place!  Her talk compared the rhetoric of Adolf Hitler and Dr. M.L. King Sr. and was presented at the Spring 2012 Communication Arts Forum before a large audience of students, faculty, university administrators and community leaders.

Born to an Argentinean family in Israel and moving to the United States at the age of seven, Ariela grew up with strong international and cross-cultural influences. Currently a junior, she is focused on learning how communication is employed in the international arena, as well as how different communication strategies are used in diplomacy. Following her military service, Ariela will return to complete her double major in communication arts and international relations before attending law school.  She hopes to one day practice international law.


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