Bruno Reinert, ’20, secured a job interview and offer shortly after graduation.
He did not have to send a creative cover letter, nor did he have to send a TikTok video resume. Mr. Reinert got hired because of Compass Advantage.
Compass Advantage is an initiative in the College of Sciences and Humanities at Ball State that helps humanities students navigate college-to-career, providing them with alumni connections, visible post-college career pathways, curriculum, events, and workshops.
“Liberal arts/humanities students aren’t on a path to one particular kind of job or industry,” said Cathy Day, founder and director of Compass Advantage and professor of English. “Instead, we give them a compass that allows them to navigate anywhere, no matter what happens to the economy, no matter if their goals change. And in this volatile job market, that’s an advantage.”
Compass Advantage’s multi-faceted approach involves alumni speakers and mentors, faculty-lead workshops, and student employment opportunities.
In the role of student project manager, student employees within Compass Advantage gain experience and exposure working as writers, designers, and marketers for Ball State humanities departments. They function as a micro-marketing agency within the College of Sciences and Humanities, with the various departments serving as their exclusive clients.
A former student project manager, Mr. Reinert says he owes his professional development to Compass Advantage. Before working on the Compass team, he says his portfolio was “anemic.” But by the time he graduated, Mr. Reinert had a robust portfolio of blog posts, data analytics reports, and websites to show to potential employers.
As it turned out, Mr. Reinert only had to show his portfolio to one employer: Intersection, a full-service marketing and branding agency located in downtown Muncie.
Months after networking with an Intersection employee at a Compass speaker series on campus, Intersection invited Mr. Reinert to apply for the position of Digital Marketing Specialist. Though this would be his first full-time professional position, Mr. Reinert wasn’t nervous for the interview: “The student project manager position instilled in me the confidence that I could do this job. I felt that my sea-legs were ready,” he said. “Once I joined Intersection, all I had to do was learn their workflow and apply what I had already learned in Compass, because I had a good foundation to build on.”
Compass Advantage is a one-of-its-kind initiative at Ball State, and it’s one of the reasons why enrollment within Ball State’s English department remains strong year after year. Because of the Compass Advantage, Ball State humanities—its students and departments—are navigating towards excellence.